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View Full Version : Bill Russell's speed and hang time >>> any center in the league today:



CavaliersFTW
02-24-2013, 05:25 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j2AlFrOj5Mc

Celtics33
02-24-2013, 05:47 AM
Wow I had no idea Bill had that type of speed and athleticism.

Antipod
02-24-2013, 05:49 AM
wow, that`s pretty impressive

ThaDubs
02-24-2013, 05:55 AM
I always saw his speed/quickness ratings on 2K13 and was like damn if that's accurate then that's impressive.

asandhu23
02-24-2013, 06:36 AM
Big men back then were built for speed. Wilt, early Kareem, etc, etc. Nowadays, its plop down there and muscle it.

Gibby
02-24-2013, 07:45 AM
Its impressive but its not from the Ft line, it was atleast 1 or 2 feet inside ft line. Plus the speed is deceiving. Its like how babe ruth looked so fast in the old videos. It also depends how tall the guy was. I am pretty sure Javale McGee, Serge Ibaka, etc could do this. Both of them took off from further away in a dunk contest.

CavaliersFTW
02-24-2013, 07:58 AM
Its impressive but its not from the Ft line, it was atleast 1 or 2 feet inside ft line. Plus the speed is deceiving. Its like how babe ruth looked so fast in the old videos. It also depends how tall the guy was. I am pretty sure Javale McGee, Serge Ibaka, etc could do this. Both of them took off from further away in a dunk contest.

Maybe one day when your 50 and enough time passes you'll have a sudden flashback to the time you saw a highlight of Bill Russell jumping "1-2 feet behind the free throw line" (over a guy then landing less than half a foot from the out of bounds line) - off his own rebound fast-break no less... and you might just realize "gee... I never did see another player come close to duplicating that play".

That's a rare sight seeing an athlete that can accomplish such a play especially so effortlessly. Javale and Ibaka are probably not capable of dribbling full court off rebounds and leaping through the air like that, otherwise they would have done it already. Javale has actually tried similar feats, they are all part of his "dumb plays" highlights because he fails each time.

P.S. Bill's measurements are 6-9 and 5/8ths w/o shoes with a 7-4 wingspan. A comparably proportioned center currently in the league would be Dwight Howard.

tmacsc2
02-24-2013, 08:08 AM
I personally believe the MJ and Bill Russel are 1A. 1B. All time. The guy doesnt have 12 rings for no reason!

Gibby
02-24-2013, 09:08 AM
Maybe one day when your 50 and enough time passes you'll have a sudden flashback to the time you saw a highlight of Bill Russell jumping "1-2 feet behind the free throw line" (over a guy then landing less than half a foot from the out of bounds line) - off his own rebound fast-break no less... and you might just realize "gee... I never did see another player come close to duplicating that play".

That's a rare sight seeing an athlete that can accomplish such a play especially so effortlessly. Javale and Ibaka are probably not capable of dribbling full court off rebounds and leaping through the air like that, otherwise they would have done it already. Javale has actually tried similar feats, they are all part of his "dumb plays" highlights because he fails each time.

P.S. Bill's measurements are 6-9 and 5/8ths w/o shoes with a 7-4 wingspan. A comparably proportioned center currently in the league would be Dwight Howard.

i did not say it wasnt impressive. I was just saying there some big men in the league that can do that. the reason they havent done it is probably because the opportunity hasn't presented itself. I was just also comparing their leaping ability not their speed or ball handling skills.

Also the comment about the speed was just about the quality of video. That video made him seem like he was fast as tony parker or chris paul. There are idiots on youtube who thought that speed was comparable to some of the fastest point guards in the league.

I was just saying it is a remarkable play and few of the big men in league today can leap like that. I also said maybe he isnt fast as tony parker. is that so crazy to say.?

CavaliersFTW
02-24-2013, 09:17 AM
i did not say it wasnt impressive. I was just saying there some big men in the league that can do that. the reason they havent done it is probably because the opportunity hasn't presented itself. I was just also comparing their leaping ability not their speed or ball handling skills.

Also the comment about the speed was just about the quality of video. That video made him seem like he was fast as tony parker or chris paul. There are idiots on youtube who thought that speed was comparable to some of the fastest point guards in the league.

I was just saying it is a remarkable play and few of the big men in league today can leap like that. I also said maybe he isnt fast as tony parker. is that so crazy to say.?
That's because he IS running that fast - are you suggesting the video is not the correct playback speed? Because it certainly is up until the slow motion kicks in, I'm the one who uploaded it, I've got several NCAA games of Bill - he was a Track and Field athlete who ran the 400 in the 40's - and I have footage of him chasing down Jerry West from a start many steps back. He definitely was as fast as anyone who's ever played the game - he was a World class athlete. And I'm sorry, but big men in the league today can't do that otherwise they would have already - especially since now a days every single moment of every single game is well documented and there are 30 teams in the league. That play demonstrates part of what made Bill Russell special, his World class athleticism and ability to run the floor. Javale and Ibaka, and everyone else in the league today doesn't have that ability or we'd have seen it happen at least once within the last half decade.

JerseyPalahniuk
02-24-2013, 12:02 PM
He almost beat the world record at the time in the high jump.


He competed in the 440 yards (400 m) race, which he could complete in 49.6 seconds.[16] He also participated in the high jump; Track & Field News ranked him as the seventh-best high jumper in the world in 1956. That year, Russell won high jump titles at the Central California AAU meet, the Pacific AAU meet, and the West Coast Relays. One of his highest jumps occurred at the West Coast Relays, where he achieved a mark of 6 feet 91⁄4 inches (2.064 m).[17]

I ran track throughout high school. 49.6 second 400m is fast

Tom2634
02-24-2013, 12:05 PM
Alright seriously...that WAS impressive, didn't realize he was capable of that...BUT

If you honestly think there isn't at LEAST a handful of guys who are 6'9" or taller in the NBA today who couldn't do that you are 100% delusional. I've never seen someone perfectly recreate Dr. J's famous reverse in a game, but that doesn't mean there aren't quite a few people in the nba capable of it. Also, there are quite a few less 5'9" stupid white guys in the nba for people to jump over nowadays, what was that idiot thinking?

asandhu23
02-24-2013, 04:25 PM
Alright seriously...that WAS impressive, didn't realize he was capable of that...BUT

If you honestly think there isn't at LEAST a handful of guys who are 6'9" or taller in the NBA today who couldn't do that you are 100% delusional. I've never seen someone perfectly recreate Dr. J's famous reverse in a game, but that doesn't mean there aren't quite a few people in the nba capable of it. Also, there are quite a few less 5'9" stupid white guys in the nba for people to jump over nowadays, what was that idiot thinking?

Everytime anyone talks about that era, people like you pretend like that era was full of unathletic short guys. That is pure ********. There wasn't a single player on those teams who was 5-9 and there were other 7 footers in that era.

chicagocubsfan
02-24-2013, 04:28 PM
Well that settles that. Get him in the dunk contest next year. Will be 10x better than the other no names they consider.

NYC
02-24-2013, 04:35 PM
And how exactly are guys more athletic now then then? No center in their dreams could do that now.

LAcowBOMBER
02-24-2013, 04:35 PM
This one is pretty impressive from Shaq
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=br3AaISFc-A

Let's also not forget he was only 6'9". Lebron could have dominated at center back then and is faster and more explosive

Chronz
02-24-2013, 04:39 PM
Let's also not forget he was only 6'9". Lebron could have dominated at center back then and is faster and more explosive
Check out page 1 for more informative athletic specs.

Bron wouldn't anchor a defense like Russ so whats your point?

LAcowBOMBER
02-24-2013, 04:41 PM
And how exactly are guys more athletic now then then? No center in their dreams could do that now.

Guys today are way more athletic. Bill Russell was 6'9". Shaq in his early days was that athletic. Shawn Kemp was a freak of nature. No one from the past can do what Vince did in his prime. Lebron could do what Russell did athletically and then some

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=br3AaISFc-A (the video is kind of annoying, but he's one inch shorter than Russell with more mass to him)

LAcowBOMBER
02-24-2013, 04:44 PM
Check out page 1 for more informative athletic specs.

Bron wouldn't anchor a defense like Russ so whats your point?

The point of the thread is that he, Russell, is faster and more athletic than any center today. Lebron certainly could have played center is Russell's day. I'm not saying Lebron could anchor a defense like Russell did, but the fact that a 6'9" player is that fast and athletic is not shocking when you look at today's players. Today's players are more athletic and faster, which is what this thread is about

Sportfan
02-24-2013, 04:45 PM
I mean, if you look at his measurements they are similar to forwards today.
6'9 height 7'4 wingspan 215 weight

He's a lighter KD in terms of size.

Chronz
02-24-2013, 04:51 PM
The point of the thread is that he, Russell, is faster and more athletic than any center today.
I know, Im just saying, saying hes 6"9 says little about his overall athleticism compared to the specs we have in pg1.


Lebron certainly could have played center is Russell's day.
Yea but he wouldn't be as good at it as he would be if he played his natural position. The OP isnt trying to compare Russ to Bron, hes comparing Russ to CENTERS of today.


I'm not saying Lebron could anchor a defense like Russell did, but the fact that a 6'9" player is that fast and athletic is not shocking when you look at today's players. Today's players are more athletic and faster, which is what this thread is about
I dont find it shocking either, but I agree with the OP's insinuation. With Dwight's injury, Russ would have the best combination of athleticism and talent

Chronz
02-24-2013, 04:53 PM
I mean, if you look at his measurements they are similar to forwards today.
6'9 height 7'4 wingspan 215 weight

He's a lighter KD in terms of size.
Well some do say he would have played more PF in the modern era, then again he wouldn't be the only undersized center.

Also hes much heavier than KD and by similar to forwards today, do you mean on average or just Durant?

asandhu23
02-24-2013, 04:56 PM
Yeah, let's find the one of the most athletic players today and compare it with Bill Russell and make the assumption that every player from today would dominate that era.

CavaliersFTW
02-24-2013, 04:57 PM
This one is pretty impressive from Shaq
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=br3AaISFc-A

Let's also not forget he was only 6'9". Lebron could have dominated at center back then and is faster and more explosive
You keep repeating "Bill Russell is only 6-9" as if that means the same thing as guys listed heights of the past 20 or 30 years. I don't think you have a clue how big Bill Russell was relative to modern players because you don't seem to be aware that list heights are extremely inaccurate and became grossly exaggerated into the modern era, where as in Russell's era players like him were sort of billed by their rough heights then rounded DOWN.

So I'm going to let you in on a little secret. The list info that you've been familiar with your entire life, is all untrue. Go to www.draftexpress.com/measurements to find actual player measurements of players who have gone through the draft. You'll see a pattern that modern players are all over billed by generally 1-2 inches.

So here are some modern players listed as tall, or nearly as tall, or taller than Bill Russell:
6-11 Dwight Howard
6-10 Omeka Okafur
6-10 Kevin Love
6-9 Tristan Thompson <--- Bill Russell would go here based on "list info"
6-8 Tracy McGrady
6-8 Carmelo Anthony

However, here is their actual measurement data thanks to both draftexpress.com/measurements and Bill Russell's autobiographies and some sports articles that all helped reveal his measurement data.

6-9.63 w/o shoes, 7-4 wingspan Bill Russell
6-9 w/o shoes, 7-4.5 wingspan Dwight Howard (-0.63" in height)
6-8.75 w/o shoes, 7-4 wingspan Emeka Okafur (- 0.88" in height)
6-7.75 w/o shoes, 7-1.25 wingspan Tristan Thompson (- 1.88" in hieght)
6-7.75 w/o shoes, 6-11.25 wingspan Kevin Love (- 1.88" in height)
6-6.5 w/o shoes, 7-2 wingspan Tracy McGrady (- 3.13" in height)
6-6.25 w/o shoes, 7-0 wingspan Carmelo Anthony (- 3.38" in height)

Surprise! Bill Russell is taller than guys that are listed 6-11 in today's league. Bill Russell would be called nothing less than a "7 footer" in the league today. And no, 7 footers do not display that kind of athleticism in the league today - hell, that was Vince Carter like. He literally picked up his dribble 25 feet out, and didn't land off his jump until he was mere inches away from being out of bound. That is insane athleticism.

Chronz
02-24-2013, 04:58 PM
Yeah, let's find the one of the most athletic players today and compare it with Bill Russell and make the assumption that every player from today would dominate that era.

One of? Hes likely the best of his generation

asandhu23
02-24-2013, 04:59 PM
Btw, Bill Russell barely made his high school and college basketball team.


In his early years, Russell struggled to develop his skills as a basketball player. Although Russell was a good runner and jumper and had extremely large hands,[4] he simply did not understand the game and was cut from the team in junior high school. As a sophomore at McClymonds High School, Russell was almost cut again.[6] However, coach George Powles saw Russell's raw athletic potential and encouraged him to work on his fundamentals.[4] Russell, who was used to racist abuse, was delighted by the warm words of his white coach. He worked hard and used the benefits of a growth spurt to become a decent basketball player, but it was not until his junior and senior years that he began to excel.[6] Russell soon became noted for his unusual style of defense.


Russell was ignored by college recruiters and did not receive a single letter of interest until Hal DeJulio from the University of San Francisco (USF) watched him in a high school game. DeJulio was not impressed by Russell's meager scoring and "atrocious fundamentals",[9] but sensed that the young center had an extraordinary instinct for the game, especially in clutch situations.[9] When DeJulio offered Russell a scholarship, the latter eagerly accepted.[6] Sports journalist John Taylor described it as a watershed in Russell's life, because Russell realized that basketball was his one chance to escape poverty and racism; as a consequence, Russell swore to make the best of it.[4]


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_Russell

asandhu23
02-24-2013, 05:04 PM
One of? Hes likely the best of his generation

Yes, but you get my point. People here are taking the one of the fastest, strongest and biggest forwards in the game ever and saying that he would dominate as a center back then. Well, no ****.

CavaliersFTW
02-24-2013, 05:08 PM
I mean, if you look at his measurements they are similar to forwards today.
6'9 height 7'4 wingspan 215 weight

He's a lighter KD in terms of size.

No, I'll say this again and this time I'll include his playing weights since you guys don't seem to be grasping how big in stature Bill Russell was and how off/misleading modern vs past "list info" comparisons can be:

6-9 and 5/8ths w/o shoes, aka 6-9.63... not merely 6-9.
7-4 wingspan
10.5" length hands
215lbs as a rookie
222lbs-228lbs his early years
230lbs the second half of his career
240lbs his final season

And Bill, unlike Wilt, never lifted weights to increase his mass. Something he would likely do at least by 15lbs in the modern era. For comparisons sake David Robinson stepped on the scale and weighed 226lbs his rookie season. Anthony Davis weighed 222lbs. Tyson Chandler weighed 224lbs. Kevin Durant weighed 215lbs - and no, I do not believe he weighs 235 at the present time like his list weight states, I doubt he has ever weighed that much I suspect that is an exaggerated number. David Robinson was listed 235 the same season he was actually weighed in at 226 - because in addition to listed heights, listed weights are also rarely accurate and can be prone to being undervalued (mostly typical of past players prior to the 1980s) or exaggerated (1990's generation and onwards) to help inflate a players stock. Bill Russell is a big man, not a forward, he's got the body of a center. A lean and remarkably agile center to be certain, but it's definitely a centers body even by today's standards.

Gibby
02-24-2013, 05:29 PM
That's because he IS running that fast - are you suggesting the video is not the correct playback speed? Because it certainly is up until the slow motion kicks in, I'm the one who uploaded it, I've got several NCAA games of Bill - he was a Track and Field athlete who ran the 400 in the 40's - and I have footage of him chasing down Jerry West from a start many steps back. He definitely was as fast as anyone who's ever played the game - he was a World class athlete. And I'm sorry, but big men in the league today can't do that otherwise they would have already - especially since now a days every single moment of every single game is well documented and there are 30 teams in the league. That play demonstrates part of what made Bill Russell special, his World class athleticism and ability to run the floor. Javale and Ibaka, and everyone else in the league today doesn't have that ability or we'd have seen it happen at least once within the last half decade.

i mean original frame per second the game was recorded. You cant say its the same as the games we watch now.

LAcowBOMBER
02-24-2013, 05:29 PM
You keep repeating "Bill Russell is only 6-9" as if that means the same thing as guys listed heights of the past 20 or 30 years. I don't think you have a clue how big Bill Russell was relative to modern players because you don't seem to be aware that list heights are extremely inaccurate and became grossly exaggerated into the modern era, where as in Russell's era players like him were sort of billed by their rough heights then rounded DOWN.

So I'm going to let you in on a little secret. The list info that you've been familiar with your entire life, is all untrue. Go to www.draftexpress.com/measurements to find actual player measurements of players who have gone through the draft. You'll see a pattern that modern players are all over billed by generally 1-2 inches.

So here are some modern players listed as tall, or nearly as tall, or taller than Bill Russell:
6-11 Dwight Howard
6-10 Omeka Okafur
6-10 Kevin Love
6-9 Tristan Thompson <--- Bill Russell would go here based on "list info"
6-8 Tracy McGrady
6-8 Carmelo Anthony

However, here is their actual measurement data thanks to both draftexpress.com/measurements and Bill Russell's autobiographies and some sports articles that all helped reveal his measurement data.

6-9.63 w/o shoes, 7-4 wingspan Bill Russell
6-9 w/o shoes, 7-4.5 wingspan Dwight Howard (-0.63" in height)
6-8.75 w/o shoes, 7-4 wingspan Emeka Okafur (- 0.88" in height)
6-7.75 w/o shoes, 7-1.25 wingspan Tristan Thompson (- 1.88" in hieght)
6-7.75 w/o shoes, 6-11.25 wingspan Kevin Love (- 1.88" in height)
6-6.5 w/o shoes, 7-2 wingspan Tracy McGrady (- 3.13" in height)
6-6.25 w/o shoes, 7-0 wingspan Carmelo Anthony (- 3.38" in height)

Surprise! Bill Russell is taller than guys that are listed 6-11 in today's league. Bill Russell would be called nothing less than a "7 footer" in the league today. And no, 7 footers do not display that kind of athleticism in the league today - hell, that was Vince Carter like. He literally picked up his dribble 25 feet out, and didn't land off his jump until he was mere inches away from being out of bound. That is insane athleticism.

Watch the Shaq clip that I posted. He did the same kind of thing and is 7'1".

Bill Russell's heigh is accurate so I am not sure what you are complaining about. Lebron's height without shoes is 6'7.25'' so again not sure what your point is.

I'm not arguing that Russell was not athletic, but there are players in today's game that are as athletic or more athletic. If this was a thread titled "Bill Russell more athletic than most think" I would be praising it, but when OP says he is >>> better than today's centers I take issue. If Lebron played back then I'm sure he would see significant time at center. Also, not sure if OP meant today as in literally today, or the past 10 or 15 years. Shaq was pretty damn athletic when he was young.

OP also was not saying Russell was just better, but much better

Russell is great, but calling his athleticism so much better than other centers is a little ridiculous especially considering he may have been put at a 4 today and many of today's 4s would have played center back then

CavaliersFTW
02-24-2013, 05:46 PM
Watch the Shaq clip that I posted. He did the same kind of thing and is 7'1".

Bill Russell's heigh is accurate so I am not sure what you are complaining about. Lebron's height without shoes is 6'7.25'' so again not sure what your point is.

I'm not arguing that Russell was not athletic, but there are players in today's game that are as athletic or more athletic. If this was a thread titled "Bill Russell more athletic than most think" I would be praising it, but when OP says he is >>> better than today's centers I take issue. If Lebron played back then I'm sure he would see significant time at center. Also, not sure if OP meant today as in literally today, or the past 10 or 15 years. Shaq was pretty damn athletic when he was young.

OP also was not saying Russell was just better, but much better

Russell is great, but calling his athleticism so much better than other centers is a little ridiculous especially considering he may have been put at a 4 today and many of today's 4s would have played center back then
Bill Russell would play center today, and the Shaq video is no where near as athletic as Bill Russell's. Shaq doesn't even begin to pick up his dribble until he is at the free throw line. Bill Russell picked up his dribble from literally 25 feet out, and once he finished leaping he was mere inches from being out of bounds. Don't try to compare the two plays, Bill takes flight, Shaq just goes coast to coast he doesn't do any leaping close to what Bill did.

Also Bill was a World class high jumper and track and field athlete. Olympic level actually. Let me repeat that, an Olympic jumper. You find it difficult to compare him to modern athletes? Well I'm sorry to hear that. But the reality is his athleticism is superior to almost every athlete playing the game right now. Bill had some James White / Vince Carter hops in a big mans body. No big man has that athleticism today.

CavaliersFTW
02-24-2013, 05:52 PM
Watch the Shaq clip that I posted. He did the same kind of thing and is 7'1".

Bill Russell's heigh is accurate so I am not sure what you are complaining about. Lebron's height without shoes is 6'7.25'' so again not sure what your point is.

I'm not arguing that Russell was not athletic, but there are players in today's game that are as athletic or more athletic. If this was a thread titled "Bill Russell more athletic than most think" I would be praising it, but when OP says he is >>> better than today's centers I take issue. If Lebron played back then I'm sure he would see significant time at center. Also, not sure if OP meant today as in literally today, or the past 10 or 15 years. Shaq was pretty damn athletic when he was young.

OP also was not saying Russell was just better, but much better

Russell is great, but calling his athleticism so much better than other centers is a little ridiculous especially considering he may have been put at a 4 today and many of today's 4s would have played center back then
Bill Russell would play center today, and the Shaq video is no where near as athletic as Bill Russell's. Shaq doesn't even begin to pick up his dribble until he is at the free throw line. Bill Russell picked up his dribble from literally 25 feet out, and once he finished leaping he was mere inches from being out of bounds. Don't try to compare the two plays, Bill takes flight, Shaq just goes coast to coast he doesn't do any leaping close to what Bill did.

Also Bill was a World class high jumper and track and field athlete. Olympic level actually. Let me repeat that, an Olympic jumper. You find it difficult to compare him to modern athletes? Well I'm sorry to hear that. But the reality is his athleticism is superior to almost every athlete playing the game right now. Bill had some James White / Vince Carter hops in a big mans body. No big man has that athleticism today.

ChiSox219
02-24-2013, 06:25 PM
Multiple big men in the league today with that kind of athleticism and size, Lebron and KD would've dunked that though. I've seen Blake do it and he wasn't moving at full speed either

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b5f6UCsz-Gs&feature=youtu.be

iFYouSeekAmy
02-24-2013, 06:27 PM
Not to mention, Russell did all of that wearing Converse Chuck Taylors. Goes to show what players had to endure to the wear and tear of their feet back then

Lake_Show2416
02-24-2013, 07:17 PM
well Bill Russell was about the size of a modern day SF, standing at 6'9 weighing around 220lbs, so its not really surprising that he moved better than a modern day center who is almost 7 foot tall weighing around 270lbs

CavaliersFTW
02-24-2013, 07:18 PM
Multiple big men in the league today with that kind of athleticism and size, Lebron and KD would've dunked that though. I've seen Blake do it and he wasn't moving at full speed either

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b5f6UCsz-Gs&feature=youtu.be

Thanks for accidentally reinforcing my point. That shows one time that BLAKE GRIFFIN - the most athletic PF in the league was finally able to go coast to coast (even listen to the announcers, they act as if they've waited forever to see if Blake could do that). And he looks much clumsier than Bill Russell while trying it. Lebron can do it obviously but he's a 6-7 small forward - he SHOULD be running the floor like that. Durant honestly probably lacks the leaping ability - so unless you've got footage you might as well scratch him off the list of athletes today that can coast to coast and pick up their dribble from 3 point land before the stuff. Bill is in rarified territory as far as athleticism goes. In todays era, in any era. The "league" today is not as athletic as you think it is - your trying to act like the greatest athletes in the league right now represent "leaguewide athleticism", probably only 3 guys can duplicate Bill Russell's feat, and none of them are as tall as Bill and none of them play center.

CavaliersFTW
02-24-2013, 07:22 PM
well Bill Russell was about the size of a modern day SF, standing at 6'9 weighing around 220lbs, so its not really surprising that he moved better than a modern day center who is almost 7 foot tall weighing around 270lbs

Bill is a "7 footer" in modern terms, he would never be listed 6-9 today because he was taller than 6-9 w/o his shoes on. He actually measured taller than Dwight Howard. Also weighed as much as 240lbs, and had a 7-4 wingspan.

SLY WILLIAMS
02-24-2013, 09:43 PM
Bill is a "7 footer" in modern terms, he would never be listed 6-9 today because he was taller than 6-9 w/o his shoes on. He actually measured taller than Dwight Howard. Also weighed as much as 240lbs, and had a 7-4 wingspan.

I was about to say that I doubt Bill was 215 in his prime. More likely that was when he was a kid fresh from college just like Drob did not stay at 235 after entering the NBA. 6-9 and only 215 would have been a string bean trying to guard Wilt. Also Shaq was never that thin in the pros although he was a lot thinner as a rookie than later on.

bagwell368
02-24-2013, 10:06 PM
I personally believe the MJ and Bill Russel are 1A. 1B. All time. The guy doesnt have 12 rings for no reason!

It's 11 rings, and he had the #1 SRS team 9 times in his career, 3 times 2nd place, 1 time 4th. No other player ever played for such great teams, and he routinely played with 4-6 OTHER HOF players on his team, and he had the best Coach/GM as well.

bagwell368
02-24-2013, 10:10 PM
Everytime anyone talks about that era, people like you pretend like that era was full of unathletic short guys. That is pure ********. There wasn't a single player on those teams who was 5-9 and there were other 7 footers in that era.

The year before Wiilt came in the league (Russell's 4th year), Russell only had 3 other players in the league 6' 8" or taller to battle.

Russell didn't dominate offensively at any point, and by the time the crop of 6' 10" and above Centers was complete in 1965 along with the 16' wide lane (to combat Wilt) Russell's offense was done.

bagwell368
02-24-2013, 10:11 PM
Thanks for accidentally reinforcing my point. That shows one time that BLAKE GRIFFIN - the most athletic PF in the league was finally able to go coast to coast (even listen to the announcers, they act as if they've waited forever to see if Blake could do that). And he looks much clumsier than Bill Russell while trying it. Lebron can do it obviously but he's a 6-7 small forward - he SHOULD be running the floor like that. Durant honestly probably lacks the leaping ability - so unless you've got footage you might as well scratch him off the list of athletes today that can coast to coast and pick up their dribble from 3 point land before the stuff. Bill is in rarified territory as far as athleticism goes. In todays era, in any era. The "league" today is not as athletic as you think it is - your trying to act like the greatest athletes in the league right now represent "leaguewide athleticism", probably only 3 guys can duplicate Bill Russell's feat, and none of them are as tall as Bill and none of them play center.

Bill could jump for sure. He could pass well too, but generally his dribbling was poor and the touch in his hands was grim by even 1985 standards - look at his FT% and FG% and consider 80% of his offense came within 5' of the hoop.

Hawkeye15
02-24-2013, 10:14 PM
Russell is overrated to me. Fringe top 10 ever, but my god, he was gifted such unreal help, his team accomplishments distort his individual ranking big time to me.

bagwell368
02-24-2013, 10:14 PM
Guys today are way more athletic. Bill Russell was 6'9". Shaq in his early days was that athletic. Shawn Kemp was a freak of nature. No one from the past can do what Vince did in his prime. Lebron could do what Russell did athletically and then some

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=br3AaISFc-A (the video is kind of annoying, but he's one inch shorter than Russell with more mass to him)

Shaq was never as athletic as Russell if to you athleticism means running and jumping. Shaq was much stronger than Bill and much more dominant a scorer. both couldn't shoot FT very well.

Hakeem bests both of them with ease in terms of all time around athlete and player.

Mile High Champ
02-24-2013, 10:17 PM
Russell for me will always be one of the most overrated players in NBA history. His game simply does not translate outside of his era at all. He is beyond undersized for a center and I would easily put Hakeem, Shaq, Wilt, Kareem, Robinson and Malone over him. Yes his athleticism and speed is impressive but it does not make up for his average numbers he posted throughout his career when you compare them to the all time greats.

bagwell368
02-24-2013, 10:18 PM
Wilt was at least as fast in a straight line as Russell. Wilt was not as quick to react in terms of moving his feet as Russell, but he could jump higher than Russell - in part because he was taller. Wilt was heavier and much stronger than Bill. When Wilt gave up being a leading scorer per his Coaches request (1965-66) and kept at it, he became a better all around player than Russell. One doomed by his generally weak teams and Coaches. The two times he played for a #1 SRS team, his team won the title.

bagwell368
02-24-2013, 10:23 PM
Russell for me will always be one of the most overrated players in NBA history. His game simply does not translate outside of his era at all. He is beyond undersized for a center and I would easily put Hakeem, Shaq, Wilt, Kareem, Robinson and Malone over him. Yes his athleticism and speed is impressive but it does not make up for his average numbers he posted throughout his career when you compare them to the all time greats.

Offensively in terms of scoring this is correct. However, his passing was elite, or nearly so. And then there is the D, which only Wilt, Hakeem, Duncan, and Howard had periods of being as good or better. He was blessed to be on the Celts under Red. If he had been drafted and kept by the Pistons he never would have won a single title because he was a complimentary player, and not a dominant ones like Wilt, West, Oscar, and Pettit who contributed more in their 10 years prime to their teams than Bill did to his. And all 4 won at least one title when they had a dominant team to play for in the 1-2-3 years they had such an opportunity.

asandhu23
02-24-2013, 10:28 PM
Wilt was at least as fast in a straight line as Russell. Wilt was not as quick to react in terms of moving his feet as Russell, but he could jump higher than Russell - in part because he was taller. Wilt was heavier and much stronger than Bill. When Wilt gave up being a leading scorer per his Coaches request (1965-66) and kept at it, he became a better all around player than Russell. One doomed by his generally weak teams and Coaches. The two times he played for a #1 SRS team, his team won the title.

Wilt had speed, agility and vertical from his track days.

bagwell368
02-24-2013, 10:38 PM
Wilt had speed, agility and vertical from his track days.

I'm talking Wilt 1966-1973. I don't disagree with speed and vertical, but his agility? Either he was losing it on the hardwood physically, or he lost his desire to do it.

GREATNESS ONE
02-24-2013, 10:44 PM
Gotta Admit, that was very impresive. No wonder he dominated that era.

bagwell368
02-24-2013, 10:46 PM
Gotta Admit, that was very impresive. No wonder he dominated that era.

I saw him play over 100 games on TV or live - at least - and he never did anything like that during any of them. It wasn't typical of post 1964 Bill.

More: I'd say this clip is before 1962. Interesting that it's from the "Wilt Chamberlain Archive" so it's likely after 1958-1959.

Chronz
02-24-2013, 10:47 PM
Russell is overrated to me. Fringe top 10 ever, but my god, he was gifted such unreal help, his team accomplishments distort his individual ranking big time to me.
Even so, this is about his athletic credentials

Hawkeye15
02-24-2013, 10:52 PM
Even so, this is about his athletic credentials

no doubt, I get that I suppose. And he was above his time athletically, outside the other freaks that existed at the time (very few).

Chronz
02-24-2013, 10:57 PM
Multiple big men in the league today with that kind of athleticism and size, Lebron and KD would've dunked that though. I've seen Blake do it and he wasn't moving at full speed either

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b5f6UCsz-Gs&feature=youtu.be

Thanks for accidentally reinforcing my point. That shows one time that BLAKE GRIFFIN - the most athletic PF in the league was finally able to go coast to coast (even listen to the announcers, they act as if they've waited forever to see if Blake could do that). And he looks much clumsier than Bill Russell while trying it. Lebron can do it obviously but he's a 6-7 small forward - he SHOULD be running the floor like that. Durant honestly probably lacks the leaping ability - so unless you've got footage you might as well scratch him off the list of athletes today that can coast to coast and pick up their dribble from 3 point land before the stuff. Bill is in rarified territory as far as athleticism goes. In todays era, in any era. The "league" today is not as athletic as you think it is - your trying to act like the greatest athletes in the league right now represent "leaguewide athleticism", probably only 3 guys can duplicate Bill Russell's feat, and none of them are as tall as Bill and none of them play center.
Griffin has great handles, hes done things similar

SLY WILLIAMS
02-24-2013, 11:06 PM
Just out of curiosity how many posters on here actually saw Bill play live not on youtube or video? I started watching the NBA in the 70's so Bill was before my time.

bagwell368
02-24-2013, 11:12 PM
Just out of curiosity how many posters on here actually saw Bill play live not on youtube or video? I started watching the NBA in the 70's so Bill was before my time.

In the past 5 years I've come across 4-5 posters that said so. I'm one. I saw my first game in the Fall of 1965.

Hawkeye15
02-24-2013, 11:13 PM
Just out of curiosity how many posters on here actually saw Bill play live not on youtube or video? I started watching the NBA in the 70's so Bill was before my time.

not even close man. I don't remember watching live basketball before 1982-83.

ManRam
02-24-2013, 11:19 PM
Javale McGee beats him in a sprint/jumping contest!

Also, Wilt was a sprinter in college...dude was FAST.

Watch some videos of prime David Robinson. Hakeem?

SLY WILLIAMS
02-24-2013, 11:20 PM
In the past 5 years I've come across 4-5 posters that said so. I'm one. I saw my first game in the Fall of 1965.

I wish I had seen him play. I do not feel comfortable evaluating players that I did not watch in their primes. Actually was Bill still in his prime by 1965?


not even close man. I don't remember watching live basketball before 1982-83.

That was good timing. You got to see Jordan, Bird, Magic, Bernard, and Isiah all in their primes.

Chronz
02-25-2013, 12:35 AM
Even so, this is about his athletic credentials

no doubt, I get that I suppose. And he was above his time athletically, outside the other freaks that existed at the time (very few).

The argument the OP presents isnt that hes just ahead of his time, but today as well

LeperMessiah
02-25-2013, 12:36 AM
I saw this on facebook, it was incredible.

Chronz
02-25-2013, 12:39 AM
Wilt was at least as fast in a straight line as Russell. Wilt was not as quick to react in terms of moving his feet as Russell, but he could jump higher than Russell - in part because he was taller. Wilt was heavier and much stronger than Bill. When Wilt gave up being a leading scorer per his Coaches request (1965-66) and kept at it, he became a better all around player than Russell. One doomed by his generally weak teams and Coaches. The two times he played for a #1 SRS team, his team won the title.

Wilt had speed, agility and vertical from his track days.
Not quite as agile

bagwell368
02-25-2013, 07:07 AM
I wish I had seen him play. I do not feel comfortable evaluating players that I did not watch in their primes. Actually was Bill still in his prime by 1965?


His last prime year was 1964-65 probably, but I was a kid and a fan, I didn't see a lot. By 1967-68 I was playing and evaluating what I saw more critically, and by then, no doubt he wasn't in his prime. I filled in a lot of the blanks later on with all the local and national programming related to Bill and Celts, and more recently UTube.

The other thing for me was the drumbeat of Bill being the greatest winner in NA sports and all the pride, and yes the mythic stuff that got added on. I've become more critical of that starting with seeing Hakeem in his prime who was totally superior to Bill in every way (in a more difficult competitive env) but his coaching and his teammates. That accelerated here the last two years as I've faced off with the ultimate Bill uber alles fan ever in various threads.

Bill was the best player on the best dynastic team of all time - true. He was fit into an offensive first high pace team, and tended to play with 4-5 HOF'ers on almost all of those teams. But Bill wasn't even the best player in his own era, so how could be be the 1B GOAT, or even the GOAT of his time? As soon as you extract Bill from the Celts and Red, he simply is not.

rockbottom2010
02-25-2013, 10:37 AM
I personally believe the MJ and Bill Russel are 1A. 1B. All time. The guy doesnt have 12 rings for no reason!

correcting.....11 rings in 13 seasons...he would have got 11 nba finals mvps....

bagwell368
02-25-2013, 10:52 AM
correcting.....11 rings in 13 seasons...he would have got 11 nba finals mvps....

What?

The last year Russell played, Jerry West won the NBA Finals MVP. Russell was on his last legs. If he had won it the year before when he was a spent force, it would have been out of voter habit, not because he deserved it.

Ramsey would have won it Bill's rookie year if they had a vote. The next year Hagen or Pettit would have won (a year the Celts didn't win in). In 1966-1967 since Wilt smoked the Celts out in the ECF, he obviously wasn't going to win.

Outside of that, Russell would have won 8 or 9. Nice haul - but he also played on the best team for the best Coach/GM, played alongside 4-6 HOF's routinely, and on average there were only 8.2 other teams in the league in his average year, with only two rounds of playoffs to start - later to 3 rounds.

Yzaemar
02-25-2013, 11:00 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iwvdsi6gLl8

asandhu23
02-25-2013, 11:47 AM
Not quite as agile

He had knee issues later on in his career and tried to fix them by playing pro level beach volleyball in the offseason down in Santa Barbara.

ewing
02-25-2013, 12:03 PM
That's because he IS running that fast - are you suggesting the video is not the correct playback speed? Because it certainly is up until the slow motion kicks in, I'm the one who uploaded it, I've got several NCAA games of Bill - he was a Track and Field athlete who ran the 400 in the 40's - and I have footage of him chasing down Jerry West from a start many steps back. He definitely was as fast as anyone who's ever played the game - he was a World class athlete. And I'm sorry, but big men in the league today can't do that otherwise they would have already - especially since now a days every single moment of every single game is well documented and there are 30 teams in the league. That play demonstrates part of what made Bill Russell special, his World class athleticism and ability to run the floor. Javale and Ibaka, and everyone else in the league today doesn't have that ability or we'd have seen it happen at least once within the last half decade.


If you have some high quality young Russell game could you PM me a link? I'd appreciate it

ewing
02-25-2013, 12:05 PM
This one is pretty impressive from Shaq
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=br3AaISFc-A

Let's also not forget he was only 6'9". Lebron could have dominated at center back then and is faster and more explosive

LeBron can dominate at center now. Sometimes he does and the Russell highlight is much more impressive then that Shaq one

bagwell368
02-25-2013, 12:10 PM
He had knee issues later on in his career and tried to fix them by playing pro level beach volleyball in the offseason down in Santa Barbara.

I remembered about the knees, but couldn't find a ref on the net. Forgot about the VBall..

Some of the tales told about Wilt are out there, like his weight lifting exploits. No way a guy with his arm length could toss around the bench weights talked about, you've got to be much stronger than a "Pop-eye" type guy to do the same weight. I'd bet his dead lifts would be insane however.

bagwell368
02-25-2013, 12:15 PM
LeBron can dominate at center now. Sometimes he does and the Russell highlight is much more impressive then that Shaq one

I just refreshed my memory with a bunch of Wilt v Russell on YouTube in the paint. If Russell's denial of the pass to Wilt failed, he just watched Wilt and avoided a foul. Russell would have done zero against Shaq in the lane with the ball. Obviously if Russell was playing for an up tempo team, he'd have gotten 3-5 easy FB hoops on Shaq - similar to what Parish did to an aging Kareem. But in a set offense? Parish like Russell was helpless vs those foes.

LAKobeBryant
02-25-2013, 12:26 PM
are you sure thats bill russell and not mj :laugh:

IKnowHoops
02-25-2013, 12:31 PM
Great athlete. I'd take David Robinsons size and athletics over Bill Russel. Not to take anything from Bill, but he is only 6'9. There are alot of 6'9" guys with that athleticism. David is 7'1" with equal or greater athletic ability than Bill

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CKVqpXl3M18

bagwell368
02-25-2013, 12:34 PM
Great athlete. I'd take David Robinsons size and athletics over Bill Russel. Not to take anything from Bill, but he is only 6'9. There are alot of 6'9" guys with that athleticism. David is 7'1" with equal or greater athletic ability than Bill

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CKVqpXl3M18

I'll take Hakeem over both, since I know Hakeem is better than Russell in every way, and Hakeem showed Robinson didn't have it head 2 head.

gwrighter
02-25-2013, 12:49 PM
That was sick but back then regular players were no bigger than John Lucas III, & LBJ jumped over him in a game with ease in a half court set. Vince Carter jumped over a 7'2 french guy in the olympics.

IKnowHoops
02-25-2013, 12:54 PM
I'll take Hakeem over both, since I know Hakeem is better than Russell in every way, and Hakeem showed Robinson didn't have it head 2 head.

I'm not going to say that David is better than Hakeem, but its much closer than everyone makes it out to be. David is definately faster and more athletic. Hakeem obviously has better post moves. I would also take David defensively over hakeem too. In that famous playoff series where Hakeem outplayed David, Houston doubled David the whole game, while David single covered Hakeem the whole game. In all there head to head matchups through there careers, they are about even. David with a tiny edge.

bagwell368
02-25-2013, 01:47 PM
I'm not going to say that David is better than Hakeem, but its much closer than everyone makes it out to be. David is definately faster and more athletic. Hakeem obviously has better post moves. I would also take David defensively over hakeem too. In that famous playoff series where Hakeem outplayed David, Houston doubled David the whole game, while David single covered Hakeem the whole game. In all there head to head matchups through there careers, they are about even. David with a tiny edge.

I have Hakeem as #1 all around C all time. I have David top 5.

David is a face up player, with no low post game. Hakeem had an awesome low post game and good face up game. Hakeem at his peak was a better defensive player IMO. Robinson was steadier over his career than Hakeem - IE Hakeem could be moody.

Even head to head? Maybe. Robinson an edge? No. Hakeem was older and went into decline earlier, take those years out (2000-end), and Hakeem is back on top.

HO: 21.9/11.2/2.8/3.4 vs
DR: 19.6/11.2/2.9/3.3

Hakeem has a slight edge/tie in everything but his FG% which was lower, but playoffs? All Hakeem. Robinson played for better teams then Hakeem and got more help than Hakeem got overall. Hakeem was busy with the lane and Robinson, Robinson in his MVP year got rolled in the playoffs by Hakeem.

35.3/12.5/5.0/4.2 vs
23.8/11.3/2.7/2.2

Most critical games - in each's prime, and Hakeem pole axed him. I just spent some time watching YoutTubes and searching google to verify that Hakeem got help with Robinson, but I can't find any, and I don't remember it that way. You have a citation?

Chronz
02-25-2013, 02:15 PM
He had knee issues later on in his career and tried to fix them by playing pro level beach volleyball in the offseason down in Santa Barbara.

Well thats injury related for sure but I meant in his prime days

Edit: we're comparing him to Russ right?