The Step Back – Episode 8 – Transcript

Andrew Wing
Hello, and welcome to the eighth edition of The Step Back podcast. I’m Andrew

Graham Wing
and I’m Graham

Andrew Wing
and we’re just a couple of guys who love basketball. In today’s episode of the podcast we’ll discuss this past week’s games, some news from this week and talk more about the best short players in NBA history. As always, we want to let you know that we keep posting new material to the website. Visit TheStepBack.ca to listen to past episodes, leave comments and to find any links that we mention in each episode. So first off, just going to talk about this week’s games. So my Raptors did pretty well, they played the Knicks and the Bulls twice. Two teams that are not very good. So it’s a good thing that we won those games.

Graham Wing
They won them all by quite a bit.

Andrew Wing
It’s a good week. I don’t think they had Kawhi for two of the games. And yeah, they just beat teams, by like, maybe both teams by over like 20 points. Yeah, this game it was. It was a big week for them. So

Yeah.

Graham Wing
So it was it was a good week.

They were able to try some different lineups, which was good.

Andrew Wing
Yeah. And the lineups worked out.

Graham Wing
Yeah. And then the last game on Saturday against the Bulls, they had almost nobody in the lineup.

Andrew Wing
Yeah, it’s pretty much like G-League and like the 10 day contract guys that they had playing and they still scored 124 points

Graham Wing
But from what I read, I didn’t see any of the game. I don’t know if you saw any of it, the Ibaka/Gasol tandem, the two of them scored 39 points or something like that. So it seemed to be a good, a good match with the two of them out on the court at the same time. It’ll be interesting to see if they do those in the playoffs.

Andrew Wing
Probably will.

Graham Wing
The other games that we watched or were watching the results of… First off, let’s talk about the Warriors versus the Timberwolves. Did you see that last six seconds of the game?

Andrew Wing
Yes, I did.

Graham Wing
Now what did you think so just to just to recap, so with six seconds left, Durant gets fouled, supposedly, just before he gathers for the shot. The Timberwolves had a foul to give so it was out of bounds so and direct got the shot in even though he thought it was an and-one which would have been for the win it wasn’t a shot. So they inbound the ball again, get the ball to Curry who sinks the three pointer. Like, oh my goodness, they’ve got weapons everywhere. And that ties the game. And then literally on the next inbounds play with point five seconds left, Durant fouls KAT and KAT hits the free throw. So the Timberwolves win the game. So there were basically two fouls called in the last six seconds that were kind of controversial. What did you think when you first saw the game or saw the highlights?

Andrew Wing
I thought the fouls were wrong.

Graham Wing
So the first foul was

Andrew Wing
The first one that was like oh my goodness No way

Graham Wing
I don’t know who was guarding Durant but he came up to him and kind of had his hands on his hips and pushed him right when Durant was grabbing the ball to shoot. I saw it at full speed the first replay I didn’t see that the game live but I saw the replay at full speed. And I am before even knowing anything. I immediately thought it was a foul because he grabbed him just before he got his hands moving upwards he had literally

Andrew Wing
it was a foul but I it was a shooting foul.

Graham Wing
No I was in the old days that would have been I’m not sure I’m a fan of the rule. But given what the rules are, I saw it and I’m like it’s a foul. It was an absolute foul under the current rules. And they made the right call. I’m surprised they made the right call. Now Curry making the three pointer was just crazy. I was like oh my goodness. Here they go again. And then at the other end, though, when so the game is tied, I think it was 130-130 or something like that.

Andrew Wing
Yeah.

Graham Wing
And there’s half a second left. And somebody in bouncing the ball. It goes to KAT. I think he caught it right away didn’t he.

Andrew Wing
I don’t think he caught the ball was I think the ball was like throne. And as you can was running. He got pushed by during

Graham Wing
Okay. Now did you think that was a foul?

Andrew Wing
Yes. He wasn’t able to jump up

Graham Wing
He cleared to me out of the way he pushed him so he couldn’t go vertical the for the jump. I mean, it was definitely a foul. And then he made the first free throw. And then it looks like he intentionally missed the second one. I was all for it. I mean, I’m happy that the Warriors last. But to me they totally seemed like fouls. I think the refs made the right call. And then apparently from the two minute report, whatever it is that the NBA issues, they say that the right calls were made. We talked a couple of weeks ago about refs and some of the bad calls. I think they were the right calls. And apparently the NBA does too. But you don’t think you don’t think the first one was?

Andrew Wing
Nope.

Graham Wing
Well, you’re wrong. But even if he had got it in who knows what would have happened, right? I mean, though with the weird file, so who knows. But anytime the Warriors lose that’s good. Right now I think Denver actually does have first place in the West. Either they’re tied or they have first but I think maybe tiebreaker or something like that. They’re in first which is just kind of crazy. Yeah. And then even then the Warriors are in fourth place in the league.

Andrew Wing
Yeah, cuz Denver, then Milwaukee, Toronto and the Warriors

Graham Wing
Milwaukee Toronto one too. Yeah, then Denver, then Golden State. So it does not at this point, it’s close. But if they make it to the finals, it’s highly likely that’s going to be Toronto or Milwaukee. Yeah, so the Warriors will not have home court advantage. So that’s a major issue. And they’re not playing particularly well this year at home. They’re playing well enough. They’ve dominated at home before and not this year. So it’ll be it’ll be interesting to see how that affects them. The other games we were just trying to pay a bit of attention to were the Rockets. You know, it’s every day it’s the question is how many points did Harden score.

Andrew Wing
Yep.

Graham Wing
So the first game of the week was the Rockets in or against Milwaukee. And neither Giannis or Harden played very well in that one.

Andrew Wing
Yeah. No, they both scored pretty low.

Graham Wing
I think that Giannis had like 19 or just it was just under 20. Anyways, and then Harden had just over 20 it was wasn’t anything phenomenal. Chris Paul had some quote about how the game meant nothing for the MVP race, which I’m sure it didn’t. One game isn’t going to settle it. Then Harden scored 38 against the Nuggets and the Rockets beat them by quite a bit.

Andrew Wing
Yep.

Graham Wing
And then the big game was the Rockets at the Kings when Harden had his 50 point triple double. So how many games is that now he’s had 50 points this year?

Andrew Wing
Nine

Graham Wing
Nine in one season. Now Jordan? I don’t know how many he did. But I’m sure it was like a seven or eight. I’m pretty sure. If you if we don’t count Wilt who had a thousand 50 point triple or 50 point games in a season, what’s the kind of that if you want to say the modern record

Andrew Wing
10

Graham Wing
By your your man

Andrew Wing
Kobe

Graham Wing
Kobe. So he’s got six games left or whatever the number is it got a week’s worth of games, six or seven games left in the season to get one more 50 point game to tie Kobe Bryant for the most other than Wilt Chamberlain. So it’s pretty amazing. So just a quick question, then. Who’s the MVP?

Andrew Wing
Harden

Graham Wing
It’s got to be

Andrew Wing
I don’t know when people say it’s Giannis, I always ask them why they think that they never have an argument for it. They just say cuz because it’s Giannis, like they never they don’t good reasons why. Harden has reasons why. Giannis is just good

Graham Wing
Giannis is having an amazing season and he will be an MVP once or twice later on in his life. But this is not the year he’s he’s playing. He’s having an amazing year.

Andrew Wing
Seems like we said that every year.

Graham Wing
But he’s having a good a great year when another player, Harden, is having a historic year. And the his 30 points streak that he had in January, his multiple 50 point games. He’s had three 60 point games, 61, 61 and 60.

Andrew Wing
Yep,

Graham Wing
The highest average in 30 years in the NBA since Jordan is 86-87 season, I think it was.

Andrew Wing
He averaged like 37 or something

Graham Wing
You know, sure his shooting percentage isn’t amazing, because he’s taking so many shots. But it’s just it is it is stunning what he’s doing. Now, for those listeners who don’t know, there’s another basketball fan in our house, my son Matthew, Andrew,s brother. And he is adamant that it is Giannis as the MVP because he is the most valuable to his team. When Harden wasn’t playing well at the beginning of the season. And he was out for a couple of weeks. The Rockets were terrible. And then when Harden goes on his streak, they go from like 11th place to fourth place. So he’s the valuable player he and with what else he’s doing. He is the Most Valuable Player. So Matthew and I have a bet that we’re going to, it’s just for a chocolate bar. So I’m going to get Reese’s Pieces, if Harden is the MVP, so I am very confident that I’m getting my Reese’s Pieces. And I think I’ve mentioned this before, but there’s also a young man that we go to church with who is a huge Warriors fan. So he picks the Warriors, I pick everybody else and I’m very confident this year that the Warriors are not going to win. There’s enough challenge out there for them. I don’t think they’re gonna win. So I’m looking forward to come June that I’m going to have some Reese’s Pieces, and a box of Captain Crunch cereal.

Anyways, there was an article on NBC Sports, in Pro Basketball Talk that mentioned how many players have scored 30 points against every other team in the league. So do you know how many times that’s been done, Andrew?

Andrew Wing
I have no idea.

Graham Wing
Well, if you could think of one player who scored a lot who did it, who would that be?

Andrew Wing
Probably Jordan.

Graham Wing
Yes, he did do it. But who’s the big scorer all time?

Andrew Wing
Oh, Wilt

Graham Wing
Wilt Chamberlain. So of course he did it. But it’s a fascinating little chart, and we’ll put it on the website. But Wilt Chamberlain is the only player to have ever scored against every team, because he was traded mid-season

Andrew Wing
That doesn’t count.

Graham Wing
And at the time, there were only nine teams in the league. So he was able, you know, normally you would only be able to score 30 points against the other eight teams. But he got traded mid-season, so he was actually able to score against all nine teams in the league, which is kind of neat. Harden is the only person in the current setup of the NBA with the 30 teams who has scored against 29 teams.

Andrew Wing
Oh, I asked you earlier why Kobe wasn’t high up. This isn’t one season. I thought it was like throughout the career. I was like what? I understand, I understand now

Graham Wing
As Andrew mentioned, Kobe is not on it, which is interesting, because he had a year where he scored 35 points or something like that

Andrew Wing
Like, 06-07 he had like that 81 point game

Graham Wing
Yeah, but somehow, but somehow or other, he didn’t do it against every team so Harden has done it against 29 teams this year. He has two teams where he only scored 30 points. And then he’s got seven or eight teams where he scored 50 plus. So it’s just insane what he’s been able to do this year, Jordan did it as did Larry Bird. But at the time, there were only 22 teams, I think that’s what the number is there. 22 other teams that they could score against. And then it goes down from there. There’s lots of other historical people who’ve done it. Kareem Abdul Jabbar did it when he was with Milwaukee in 73-74. He did it again, a couple of times. Wilt Chamberlain did it a couple of times. But from the names that are you know, current people or recent history… James Harden did it for 29 teams. And then Jordan and Larry Bird did it against 22 teams. Jordan’s highest points of that year, we’re 61 he did that against the Pistons in 86-87. And Bird did it and 84-85. And he scored 60 against the Hawks. So obviously he had a pretty good year that year as well. Yeah. So it’s just again, another reason why Harden’s the MVP this historic season. Nobody has scored 30 points against more than 22 teams other than Harden. It’s amazing. All right. How’s your NCAA bracket?

Andrew Wing
Horrible

Graham Wing
Busted

Andrew Wing
Yep.

Graham Wing
After the first round or what?

Andrew Wing
I think it was the first game actually.

Graham Wing
I had meant to do a bracket this year and I just never did. We were down in Florida and and just just didn’t do it. But there was one guy who apparently, I don’t know, it’s hard to track these for sure. But one guy in the history of I’m not sure what the list of sites are, but it’s ESPN, Sports Illustrated, NCAA themselves and some other sites. Only one person has ever ever chosen the sweet 16. And that kind of wouldn’t you have thought somebody would have guessed it by now?

Andrew Wing
Yeah.

Graham Wing
His name is Greg Nidl. N-I-D-L. I’m not sure how you say his name. And now he’s lost because he had picked Gonzaga and he had picked Duke, who is now lost. Anything in the tournament so far that you think has been really interesting? Or that you’ve enjoyed or?

Andrew Wing
Yeah

Graham Wing
What?

Andrew Wing
Well, three, the number one seeds have been eliminated.

Graham Wing
So who’s the number one seed that’s left

Andrew Wing
Virginia still in?

Graham Wing
I don’t know.

Andrew Wing
I don’t know either.

Graham Wing
Do your research.

Andrew Wing
Sorry.

Graham Wing
So anyways, but there’s always upset so that’s, that’s what makes the tournament amazing, right? It’s a one game playoff

Andrew Wing
But Duke was like, with like there two like top three picks. There hasn’t been a team that’s like that stacked in like a long time. It’s just crazy.

Graham Wing
They’re going to have three out of the top seven, three out of the top nine.

Andrew Wing
Yeah

Graham Wing
It’s amazing.

Andrew Wing
It’s just crazy that they lost so early.

Graham Wing
I’m not sure if I mentioned this before on the podcast. But when we watched Duke and UNC play, Duke has the better player in Zion. He’s amazing.

Oh, yeah.

But UNC is a better team. Now they’ve lost now as well. But I don’t think Duke, they just didn’t flow very well. I don’t I didn’t see many of their games this season. I saw maybe four. And I just didn’t think they were a great team. Yeah. And so it doesn’t surprise me that they lost. They were they were rated high because of their record. And because they had the best player and multiple good players. But they hadn’t really gelled, I don’t think as a team, which is one of the problems with the whole one and done thing. Could you imagine if they came back next year? They would be a better team?

Andrew Wing
Oh, yeah.

Graham Wing
So think about 20 years ago, when the players were playing 2, 3, 4 years of year of college ball. Duke next year would be amazing. With all these first year players coming back having the experience becoming a real team. They’d go undefeated and win the tournament

Andrew Wing
Probably

Graham Wing
But it’s not going to happen.

Andrew Wing
Yeah.

Graham Wing
We talked about last year’s Rookie of the Year race and how neither of us felt that Simmons shouldn’t have been the rookie because he wasn’t really a rookie, even though it was his first year playing. Right. But we you know, Mitchell and Tatum got kind of ripped off. So there was an article on ESPN about the sophomores. So they’re in their second year. So just a quick question for you out of D’Aaron Fox, Mitchell, Simmons or Tatum, who do you think is the better player? This year? Um, who would you be? I guess the question was, “Which super soph (as in sophomore) would NBA execs build around?” So if you had to pick one of those for who would you pick?

Andrew Wing
I don’t know. It would definitely be between Simmons and Mitchell. But like Simmons is a great playmaker. He gets everyone around him involved. It’s just you can’t shoot. And Donnavan Mitchell can shoot and he got everyone involved around him involved. But Simmons like right now he just looks like a much more mature player than Mitchell, just at this point. So it’s it’s really hard

Graham Wing
Pick one. Before before we talked about the results. Pick one.

Andrew Wing
I’m going with Mitchell

Graham Wing
Mitchell as number one?

Andrew Wing
Yeah, sure.

Graham Wing
Well, they had this point scale, those four people and NBA executives had to rank them. Simmons was number one with 55 points. Mitchell was number two at 48. Tatum three and 43 and D’Aaron Fox at 34. So it’s probably fair. If it’s I think the playmaking abilities of Ben Simmons, we already had this argument about what makes a good point guard. Simmons is an exceptional point guard. There have been comparisons to Magic Johnson. And if he is the best point guard of all time, which I don’t think he is, but if people think he is, then Ben Simmons being like Magic Johnson that’s quite a compliment.

Andrew Wing
Yeah

Graham Wing
Mitchell at 48 that’s fine. I probably agree with you. I would pick one of those too. My heart goes with Tatum. I feel bad for him this year.

Andrew Wing
Yeah, it’s been a rough season.

Graham Wing
Yeah, I think the Celtics are a bit of a wreck. I’ve talked about Kyrie and how I think he’s poison on the team. I mentioned this to you earlier in the week. You know, you look at the Raptors and they have a starting five.

Andrew Wing
Yeah.

Graham Wing
And they have a bench.

Andrew Wing
Yeah.

Graham Wing
And you look at the Warriors and they have a starting five and they have a bench.

Andrew Wing
They all know their roles and what they’re doing

Graham Wing
The Celtics have Kyrie Irving. And then they have eight guys who could all start on their team doesn’t mean they’re superstars. But there is no real starting lineup where they know their roles, and then the bench guys who know their roles.

Andrew Wing
Yeah.

Graham Wing
Would you agree with that?

Andrew Wing
Oh, definitely

Graham Wing
Yeah, you know, so whether it’s Horford or Baynes, or Rosier or Tatum or Brown, or Gordon Hayward. You know, any of these guys could slip in and out which on the one hand is fantastic for a team to have that sort of depth.

Andrew Wing
Yep.

Graham Wing
But when you don’t know your role, and you aren’t in sync, and when you’re coming in when you’re expecting to play and that kind of thing. It’s hard on the team.

Andrew Wing
I think you said earlier this week that the Celtics, they those eight players are the nine players that they have, they all play the same, like they don’t have, like unique kind of skill set.

Graham Wing
I agree. They don’t have a dominant big man. They don’t have an amazing shooter. As I said, they’re kind of got Kyrie and everybody else.

Yeah.

And so I don’t know if that’s the fault of Danny Ainge, who’s not bringing in the right people. I don’t know if that’s Brad Stevens, who hasn’t set up the right rotations

Andrew Wing
It’s Brad Stevens.

Graham Wing
I don’t know what it is. I think that they’ve tried to appease Kyrie too much. And they’ve tried to spread the minutes around and it’s hurt them. And I think they need to pick their team. And if they need to trade some people who aren’t happy, I think we need to do that. I think they need to build their team with the support players behind them. As opposed to having this everybody plays thing. I just don’t think it’s gonna work for them. Anyways, this came up because of Tatum. I feel bad for him. He is a very good player, and he has the potential to be an amazing player. And I think with the current rotations that the Celtics are employing, it’s just not a great fit for him right now.

Andrew Wing
Nope.

Graham Wing
So it’s interesting, you know, at the beginning of the season, or even to mid season when the Celtics were still not too bad. And there was a talk about Anthony Davis. And it was, you know, Tatum I’m sure was thinking I don’t want to go anywhere. I don’t want to go to New Orleans.

Andrew Wing
Yeah.

Graham Wing
You wonder now

Andrew Wing
What’s he thinking?

Graham Wing
The team is lost four out of five or four out of six or something like that. They’re just heading into the playoffs and they’re not playing very well.

Andrew Wing
Yeah.

Graham Wing
So it’ll be interesting to see what happens with the Celtics, whether Irving stays and how they arranged the rest of their team. So anyways, that consensus from this article was that Ben Simmons is the sophomore that you’d want to build your team around. It’s pretty hard to argue that

Andrew Wing
Yeah.

Graham Wing
The last thing before we get into our main topic for the week is your boy, Devin Booker.

Andrew Wing
I love him.

Graham Wing
What a chump.

Andrew Wing
Oh be quiet.

Graham Wing
So we’ve we’ve your two favorite guys Kobe and Devin, Devin Booker. So Kobe didn’t score against all the other teams in the league. So he’s a he’s a chump. And now Devin Booker has become the youngest player in NBA history to have back to back 50 point games. Yay, Devin.

Andrew Wing
Yeah

Graham Wing
But he has also become the first person in NBA history. Not age wise. Just the first person ever to lose his first 3 50-point games.

Andrew Wing
That’s routh.

Graham Wing
That is rough. What do you think he thinks about playing in Phoenix?

Andrew Wing
Well, whenever you he gives comments about it, he always says the right thing. “Oh yeah, we have D’Andre Ayton. We have a couple of young guys like we’re a good team to build around.” But I’ve really, I don’t know, I feel like he thinks that if he stays there, and he has like a good supporting cast, like he’s going to be the star. And like it’s going to be all about him with like, maybe like one or two more all stars, but like he’s gonna be the main guy. But I know that I think he also could be thinking about like, I really need to get out of here. Because the last two seasons He’s like, I’m done with not missing the playoffs.

Graham Wing
Ayton’s got great potential.

Andrew Wing
Yep.

Graham Wing
And now you got eight and Booker. Like there really are only a couple of players short of being able to build this.

Andrew Wing
Yeah.

Graham Wing
So I hope he stays in there.

Andrew Wing
They will have another like high pick. Maybe they’ll get Cam Reddish this year at like five, six and it’ll be a good addition.

Graham Wing
Three 50-point game and you go down, like that is rough. That is rough. Well, good for him. He is a good shooter. But until he does it on a good team, when there’s other people who can shoot, I’m still not convinced of of his superstardom, or whatever. So we’ll see what happens.

All right. So this week, neither of us have a shot clock violation, or a buzzer beater. We just haven’t been in that mode since we’ve been back from vacation. But we’ll have one of those again soon. So for the remainder of the time, we wanted to take a few minutes and talk about the shortest players in NBA history and the best players in NBA history. We mentioned this previously. And listener Dave left a comment on the website, talking about how Muggsy Bogues had a long career. This came up because of our episode a couple of weeks ago about how we said Isaiah Thomas looks like he’s totally done now.

Andrew Wing
Yeah

Graham Wing
With Denver, right? So that hasn’t worked out for him. So Muggsy Bogues was five foot three, and I didn’t realize this, he played almost 900 games in his career.

Andrew Wing
Pretty good.

Graham Wing
So that’s, I’m not sure how many of those were playoff games versus regular season. But he played essentially 11 seasons, maybe it was 12 or 13, with injuries and that sort of thing. But he had a pretty long season, which is impressive. And one of the things that Wikipedia mentions, which of course, I remember seeing these photos was that he played against one of the tallest player in NBA history. Who was Manute Bol.

Andrew Wing
Oh, yeah.

Graham Wing
So seeing that there’s, there’s all if you look online, there’s all sorts of photos of Manute Bol with Muggsy Bogues beside him and there literally is two feet four inches difference between the two of them, which is just crazy.

Andrew Wing
Yeah.

Graham Wing
Now I wanted to know how many short players are in the NBA Hall of Fame, or I guess the pro Basketball Hall of Fame, the Naismith Hall of Fame. Any ideas Andrew? Any guesses?

Andrew Wing
Um, I’ll go with one, say one. Muggsy Bogues.

Graham Wing
Muggsy Bogues is not in the Hall of Fame

Andrew Wing
Then zero.

Graham Wing
I would have thought just in the history of basketball, there would have been a couple of short, exceptional players. There is only one, Calvin Murphy who played for the Houston Rockets, and he played 1000 games over a 13 year season. And he is the shortest player in NBA history in the Hall of Fame. And he is the shortest player to have appeared in at least one All Star game, or maybe was the first first short player to appear in an all star game was probably what it is. And he was five foot nine.

There is nobody else really below 5’10” of any significance. So Isaiah Thomas, compared to Muggsy Bogues, who was five-three, and play just under 900 games, Calvin Murphy, five-nine played 1000 games, Isaiah Thomas, I’m not sure if this is exactly up to date, 389 games. So he’s only played a third of the number of games as these other people, is the same height. And sure he had an amazing year or two there with Boston.

Andrew Wing
Yeah.

Graham Wing
But the phrase is a flash in the pan, just burn bright, and then just fizzled out real quick. So it’s kind of interesting to look at this list. Some of the people I’ve never heard of before. Some I have. So five, three was Muggsy Bogues. Then the next shortest is five-five Earl Boykins, Mel Hirsch, Greg Grant, Keith Jennings, Herm Klotz, Wataru Misakia, Monte Towe. Never heard of any of those people. Then we get to the next one. I’ve heard of five foot seven

Andrew Wing
Spud Webb

Graham Wing
Spud Webb pumping up his his shoes with during the dunk competition.

Andrew Wing
Yeah.

Graham Wing
And there was Charlie Criss, Dino Martin, Willie Somerset, Howie Carl, Charlie Hoefer, Lionel Malamed, Ed Melvin, then Calvin Murphy. Angelo Musi, Ralph O’brien, Nate Robinson. Yeah, the next name, but I recognize there. He was in the dunk competition a few times. Won it three times. So he had some major hops, they’re being able to dunk. It’s interesting, though, as you look through this list, and I’ll have it on the website. Some of these short players play for a lot of teams.

Andrew Wing
Yeah.

Graham Wing
So they are they’re good enough to be in the NBA. But not good enough to stick around really. So it’s always a it’s almost like a desperation move the team, well, let’s give them a try. And he stays there for a year didn’t work out. He goes to another team. Let’s give them a try. So Nate Robinson played for eight teams. Eight teams over 10 years. So barely a team a year. Yeah, and only played 574 games. over eight over 10 years is not very long.

Andrew Wing
Yeah, no.

Graham Wing
Isaiah Thomas has played for six teams and his short career. So yeah, for whatever reason, they just bounce around. So I what I said a couple weeks ago, I still stand by it, that it is very hard, if not impossible, for a truly short player in NBA terms to make it in the NBA.

Andrew Wing
Yep.

Graham Wing
Now, it doesn’t you know, the less than Wikipedia doesn’t have anybody above 510. But as soon as you get into the six foot range, that’s Isiah Thomas, the original Isiah Thomas. He was like six one or something like that. There’s lots of point. I’m not sure how tall Steve Nash was, but he was probably in that range.

Andrew Wing
Probably around six.

Graham Wing
Jason Kidd, john Stockton, I think was six or six one. So once you get up into that six foot range, you have a lot of players that are for NBA height appropriate.

Yeah

A five foot nine player on a high school basketball team who’s a good point guard might be phenomenal. But as soon as you’re Muggsy Bogues at five, three, playing against a seven, seven guy, when you’re playing against people who are a foot or more taller than you, it’s just almost impossible.

Yeah.

So thanks, listener Dave for the call out about Muggsy Bogues. Definitely, he is probably the longest tenured as the shortest person ever. He had a very good long career, but not in the Hall of Fame. And again, there’s only one if I can say short player in NBA history, who’s made it into the Hall of Fame. And he’s the only person who played a lot of games, the only person who broke the thousand game barrier, Calvin Murphy with the Houston Rockets from 1972-1983. So that was before my time I was alive for the last part of it there, but never I wasn’t, I was very young at the time, so it wasn’t really following it. Well, before your time.

Andrew Wing
Yeah.

Graham Wing
So Isaiah Thomas right now is kind of the standard for modern NBA shortness.

Andrew Wing
Yep.

Graham Wing
And again, it’s nothing against Isaiah Thomas. All the best to him. But he’s just not the guy.

Andrew Wing
Nope.

Graham Wing
Alright. Anyways, Two other quick things before we close. I forgot about these a little bit earlier. Did you see the flop?

Andrew Wing
The flop.

Graham Wing
So this was a game between Oregon and Virginia. And I’m not sure how to say his name. I’m sorry if I say it wrong. Ehab Amin was standing at the basket. Somebody had gotten a rebound and he was nose to nose against this guy. And the guy basically went up into his face but doesn’t look like he touched it at all. And there was for a split second nothing happened. And then all of a sudden, I mean, just fell to the ground.

Andrew Wing
Yeah

Graham Wing
It was one of the biggest flops I have ever seen in my entire life

Andrew Wing
Worse than Lebron’s against the Raptors?

Graham Wing
Oh, but if there’s at least if there’s touching, you know, it catches people by surprise and you can somehow justify it. But I’m it does not look like there was any contact at all. They were standing face to face. And the ref came right beside him. And all of a sudden he just he kind of looked to the side and he just felt. It was terrible.

Andrew Wing
Funny

Graham Wing
It was funny. And again, we’ll have the video on the website. And then this for sure is the last item. Manu Ginobli… GINOBLI as Charles Barkley always likes to yell out on the show. He had his number retired this week.

Andrew Wing
That’s good.

Graham Wing
It is good. Is he a Hall of Famer?

Andrew Wing
Yes.

Graham Wing
Why?

Andrew Wing
He’s got rings, got awards. He’s got points. He killed a bat. He’s gone the Hall of Fame.

Graham Wing
He is probably he may not be in the end. But at this point, probably the best international player ever. Probably maybe do Dirk’s up there. There’s going to be a few he’s right up there anyways.

Andrew Wing
Yeah.

Graham Wing
Right. For a little guy or living you know, he’s not it wasn’t super tall. Yeah, he and he won European Championships, won an Olympic gold medal, won four championships?

Yeah, cuz I missed, he missed the first

Won four championships with my Spurs. He’s amazing. It’s great. When you look back on some of the clips, we’re going to include a link on the website from ESPN that were the “20 Moments that define Manu Ginobli’s Unforgettable Career,” and it’s funny watching some of the clips where he’s got hair. He kind of pioneered the Euro step. He played in Europe for a couple of years and then made it into the NBA. He went toe to toe against LeBron, against Kobe. He came off the bench for a good part of his career because the team needed him to he was good enough to be a starter. But they needed him to come off the bench. He had 48 points in a game. He slammed over Yao Ming. The video that the article shows isn’t super clear, but it’s just anytime you can get anywhere close to a seven six guy to dunk on? And that’s pretty impressive that you mentioned the bat. Just what a random shot like he just swung his arms and somehow hit the bat down like this.

Andrew Wing
Yeah

Graham Wing
That was amazing. Some game winners in the playoffs. He won the six man award like he just he’s done it all. And I absolutely agree with you that he is a Hall of Famer without a doubt as one of the best even if it wasn’t because it was European. I think the length of his career. The championships won he’s a Hall of Famer. But because you add in his European experience, and the fact that he is kind of lead the way for the rest of these players. Yeah, definitely. He’s a Hall of Famer.

Andrew Wing
Yeah.

Graham Wing
So Duncan’s number has been retired. And Ginobli’s numbers been retired. Yeah. And Tony was there so I wonder if Tony’s watching that go up there and he’s just you know, his his numbers going up.

Andrew Wing
Oh, yeah.

Graham Wing
Without a doubt. Is Tony Parker Hall of Famer?

Andrew Wing
Yes.

Graham Wing
Why?

Andrew Wing
Same reasons as Ginobli. He’s done it all

Graham Wing
Done it all and got the got the rings

Andrew Wing
Yeah

Graham Wing
I mean, that’s what Jordan says right. It’s the rings.

Andrew Wing
LeBron.

Graham Wing
Tony has the most rings of anybody currently in the NBA.Matthew was telling us about that. So if the Warriors when this will be their fourth championship, so there’ll be several guys that tie, Tony

Andrew Wing
Yeah

Graham Wing
But Tony’s got four . My spurs are certainly going to make the playoffs again, it appears unless there’s unless they lose six in a row and somebody wins six in a row. But there this is going to be there 22nd season in a row

Andrew Wing
Crazy

Graham Wing
But then you get into this question of is it good that they make the playoffs? Are they better off

Andrew Wing
No, they are just kind of an average team and so they’re not really good where they are a championship contender and they’re not really bad where they’re getting first round picks? So are really good high picks. Yeah.

They are

Graham Wing
High, picks. That’s a bit of a tangent on that Ginobli thing. But yeah, I wonder what the Spurs what their plan is? They they have been the model franchise for 20 years. Everybody wants to create the culture that the Spurs have maybe with a more modern coach, modern instead of being so strict, but everybody wants to be the Spurs and have a winning tradition like that. And they’re not winning right now.

They are but not enough. Anyway. So is it How long can you keep being an average middle of the road team for? I don’t know. It’ll be interesting to see what happens.

Andrew Wing
If they had Kawhi Leonard they would have still kept that 50 win streak going and they probably still be a championship contender

Graham Wing
Probably. It’s all because of what’s his name? Who’s stuck his foot out?

Andrew Wing
Pachulia

Graham Wing
Oh, yes. Pachulia.

Andrew Wing
It’s all his fault. He started everything.

Graham Wing
Absolutely.

Andrew Wing
It is is completely his fault.

Graham Wing
He can take credit for the downfall of the Spurs. Anyways, any closing comments, Andrew?

Nope.

All right. Well, that’s it for this edition of The Step Back podcast. Look on the website. And we’ll have links to all of these different articles, information about these short players. The Harden story about the 30 points a game a lot of interesting stuff this week. Keep watching basketball and we’ll be talking to you again next week.

Andrew Wing
Peace

Transcribed by https://otter.ai


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