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HandsOnTheWheel
02-09-2017, 12:43 AM
Yeah I know, this thread again.

Anyways I've got:

1. Lebron
2. KD
3. Westbrook
4. Kawhi
5. Harden
6. IT
7. Curry
8. AD
9. Cousins
10. Derozen
11. G Hayward
12. Buckets
13. Lillard
14. Irving
15. Towns

Who have you got?

*As a bonus, who is your current MVP?

I've got Harden still with Westy and Lebron trailing.

Alayla
02-09-2017, 02:38 AM
LBJ
Kawhi
Westbrook
Durant
Curry
The Brow
DMC
Bulter
Klay
The Beard
PG13
Giannis
Lowry
Thomas
CP3


Was difficult to leave off Lillard, Kyrie and Embiid and to a lesser extent Derozan and Hayward
So i guess there is my top 20

Alayla
02-09-2017, 02:43 AM
LBJ
Kawhi
Westbrook
Durant
Curry
The Brow
DMC
Bulter
Klay
The Beard
PG13
Giannis
Lowry
Thomas
CP3


Was difficult to leave off Lillard, Kyrie and Embiid and to a lesser extent Derozan and Hayward
So i guess there is my top 20

Westbrook=MVP
(RIP meant to edit post not reply to it)

More-Than-Most
02-09-2017, 03:15 AM
I fought up and down with Tre for years now arguing how lebron has passed his prime... and I still believe he has but i expected some type of fall off to a point and it just isn't happening... The dudes ridiculous. Starting to see Tre side a bit now... Maybe the dude is still around his prime... I dunno... Its insane how he can keep doing this.

More-Than-Most
02-09-2017, 03:16 AM
Note I ****ing hate draymond and I am all about stats but this dudes stats might not be top 15 player in the NBA but what he does on defense to me should have him up there

ManRam
02-09-2017, 10:40 AM
1. LeBron
2. KD
3. Kawhi
4. Westbrook
5. Curry
6. Harden
7. CP3
8. Davis
9. Cousins
10. Butler
11. IT
12. Lowry
13. Dray
14. Giannis
15. Towns

A lot of that feels pretty fluid.

Giannis94
02-09-2017, 10:43 AM
1. LeBron
2. KD
3. Kawhi
4. Westbrook
5. Curry
6. Harden
7. CP3
8. Davis
9. Cousins
10. Butler
11. IT
12. Lowry
13. Dray
14. Giannis
15. Towns

A lot of that feels pretty fluid.

Tend to agree with this (could argue Lebron isn't #1) but think that 9-15 could almost be arranged in anway and not be too out of line.

ManRam
02-09-2017, 10:48 AM
Tend to agree with this (could argue Lebron isn't #1) but think that 9-15 could almost be arranged in anway and not be too out of line.

I wouldn't argue too hard about any of them. LeBron's at 1 for me because of his playoff run, proving he can still do the most otherworldly things when needed...but he has not been the best regular season player for a few years now. I prefer Westy to Curry to Harden, but some of that might be my biases. I actually think CP3 could be bumped up if he could stay healthy. I struggled to decide on 15, and yeah, 9-14 were tough. I'm even skeptical of your boy...because I feel like we tend to get a little too excited when a young player has his breakout season and sometimes get a little ahead of ourselves.

Giannis94
02-09-2017, 10:51 AM
I wouldn't argue too hard about any of them. LeBron's at 1 for me because of his playoff run, proving he can still do the most otherworldly things when needed...but he has not been the best regular season player for a few years now. I prefer Westy to Curry to Harden, but some of that might be my biases. I actually think CP3 could be bumped up if he could stay healthy. I struggled to decide on 15, and yeah, 9-14 were tough. I'm even skeptical of your boy...because I feel like we tend to get a little too excited when a young player has his breakout season and sometimes get a little ahead of ourselves.

For me personally its frustrating to see Giannis play for the worst coach in basketball. I honestly think that he would be great in a Kerr/Walton offense where they teach spacing, rotations and defense. So many times its pas-pass-stall. No movement, no one looking to create movement on and off the ball, and then Giannis chucking.

bostncelts34
02-10-2017, 11:13 AM
1. LBJ
2.Durant
3.WestBrook
4.Kawhi
5.Harden
6. Thomas
7. Curry
8. Davis
9.Cousins
10. Derozen
11. Giannis
12. Butler
13. Draymond
14.Towns
15. Lowry

A lot of them are pretty interchangeable. Honorable mentions : Kryie,CP3 ,lillard. Hayward

Giannis94
02-10-2017, 11:20 AM
1. LBJ
2.Durant
3.WestBrook
4.Kawhi
5.Harden
6. Thomas
7. Curry
8. Davis
9.Cousins
10. Derozen
11. Giannis
12. Butler
13. Draymond
14.Towns
15. Lowry

A lot of them are pretty interchangeable. Honorable mentions : Kryie,CP3 ,lillard. Hayward

I think the Top 3 is interchangeable, but feel that Curry could be at 4 instead.

ewing
02-10-2017, 11:53 AM
Cousins is not a top 10 player on the league


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

FlashBolt
02-10-2017, 01:09 PM
How is Durant better than LeBron? The suggestion of that is laughable.

DanG
02-10-2017, 01:12 PM
1. LeBron
2. Durant
3. Kawhi
4. Curry
5. Harden
6. Westbrook
7. AD
8. CP3
9. Cousins
10. Kyrie
11. IT
12. Butler
13. Giannis
14. Wall
15. Dray
16. DeRozan
17. Griffin
18. KAT
19. Lillard
20. Hayward

Not so high on Lowry.

tredigs
02-10-2017, 01:27 PM
Yeah I know, this thread again.

Anyways I've got:

1. Lebron
2. KD
3. Westbrook
4. Kawhi
5. Harden
6. IT
7. Curry
8. AD
9. Cousins
10. Derozen
11. G Hayward
12. Buckets
13. Lillard
14. Irving
15. Towns

Who have you got?

*As a bonus, who is your current MVP?

I've got Harden still with Westy and Lebron trailing.

This makes no sense. You're saying Lebron is playing the best ball in the NBA? Or if it's mixed with rep that IT is above Curry? You guys drunk?

DanG
02-10-2017, 01:32 PM
Yeh Curry becoming underrated, it's still the same guy that put up historical numbers last year, he hasn't regressed, it's just Durant is on the team.

RLundi
02-10-2017, 01:52 PM
I remember last year I had an ongoing feud with Vee-Rex and a few other posters who swore up and down that I was crazy because I put Lowry and possibly IT above Kyrie as a PG. I was given hell for the mere idea that those two PGs were in the same league as Kyrie. Now it's clear as day that both PGs are better than Irving.

Anyway, my list is

LBJ
Durant
Westbrook
Kawhi
Harden
AD
CP3
Curry
Thomas
Cousins
Giannis
Lowry
Butler
Derozan
Wall

RLundi
02-10-2017, 02:04 PM
How is Durant better than LeBron? The suggestion of that is laughable.

Why? LBJ hasn't been the best regular season player in a while. I get the feeling he can turn it on whenever he wants and he sorta saves himself for the playoffs, but I got no beef with anyone rewarding Durant for keeping his foot on the pedal all year.

That being said, I chose LBJ because I know he's coasting some. When he's at his highest though, no one is better. It's just we don't really see that that much anymore before May or June.

mightybosstone
02-10-2017, 02:29 PM
Taking everything into account, including previous production and current production, my list would look something like this:

Tier 1 (I just think these guys are a step above the rest):
1. Lebron
2. Durant
3. Curry

Tier 2 (Hard to order them, but I can't justify placing any of these guys in Tier 1 yet):
4. Harden (my MVP pick, obviously)
5. Kawhi
6. Paul
7. Westbrook
8. Davis

Tier 3 (Really tough to put these guys in any order, but I can't justify these guys in Tier 2):
9. Butler
10. Thomas
11. Giannis
12. Cousins
13. Lowry
14. Lillard
15. Kyrie

Other Tier 3 guys just outside the top 15 (in no particular order):
DeRozan
Wall
Griffin
Gobert
Towns
Draymond
George
Marc Gasol

Tier 4 guys (in no particular order):
Thompson
Hayward
Conley
Walker
Horford
Millsap
Love
Beal
Porzingis
Embiid
Dwight
Melo
McCollum
Etc. (probably a whole lot of other guys I'd put in this conversation)

The key here is that guys in the top two tiers should pretty much be locks in anybody's top 10-15 lists. And guys in Tier 3 are nearly impossible to order, but you could make a strong case for any of them in a top 15-20 conversation. But the guys in Tier 4 are all still really good players that I just don't see how you can justify in those conversations at this point. Top 30-40? OK. Top 25? Maybe, depending on whatever your barometers are. But top 15-20? That's pushing it.

Heediot
02-10-2017, 02:35 PM
Harden, Derozan, Lowry, IT are guys who I think benefit from regular season rules and would show up differently in the playoffs. Whereas I would take less efficient RS guys like PG and Kyrie in the playoffs, because I think their game translates better. Hard for me to rank considering such factors.

Shammyguy3
02-10-2017, 03:47 PM
Harden, Derozan, Lowry, IT are guys who I think benefit from regular season rules and would show up differently in the playoffs. Whereas I would take less efficient RS guys like PG and Kyrie in the playoffs, because I think their game translates better. Hard for me to rank considering such factors.
What translation occurs for the playoffs that is absent in the regular season

Hawkeye15
02-10-2017, 03:49 PM
Why? LBJ hasn't been the best regular season player in a while. I get the feeling he can turn it on whenever he wants and he sorta saves himself for the playoffs, but I got no beef with anyone rewarding Durant for keeping his foot on the pedal all year.

That being said, I chose LBJ because I know he's coasting some. When he's at his highest though, no one is better. It's just we don't really see that that much anymore before May or June.

that is exactly how I feel. Do we pick who the best player is over the course of 100 games? Or are we taking the player we would all want in the finals? Because LeBron hasn't been the best player in the game from October-June the last few years. But, I am taking him in the biggest games over anyone until proven otherwise.

ManRam
02-10-2017, 03:56 PM
Yeh Curry becoming underrated, it's still the same guy that put up historical numbers last year, he hasn't regressed, it's just Durant is on the team.

I struggled with Curry. I think anywhere from 2-5 is fine. I think my biases might have led to Russ being ahead of him, and I don't know how strongly I could defend that. Probably shoulda put Curry at 4. But I think two things have changed for me. First, even though he's the greatest shooter ever and it doesn't happen often, I think we saw how little of an impact he might have on the entirety of the game if his shot isn't falling like in certain games of the Finals. Now, the shots fall a lot, but I don't quite think he has the all-around game that the other super stars have. But the one skill he does have is probably the most important these days. Second, I think with the two of them now playing beside each other, it's become pretty clear who the better player is between Curry and KD.

If I'm picking fights here, I'm fighting over CP3. Unless he's off your list because he's presently hurt, he shouldn't be. He's still very obviously a top-10 player. In fact, I really have a hard time understanding putting him below 7.

tredigs
02-10-2017, 04:00 PM
I struggled with Curry. I think anywhere from 2-5 is fine. I think my biases might have led to Russ being ahead of him, and I don't know how strongly I could defend that. Probably shoulda put Curry at 4. But I think two things have changed for me. First, even though he's the greatest shooter ever and it doesn't happen often, I think we saw how little of an impact he might have on the entirety of the game if his shot isn't falling like in certain games of the Finals. Now, the shots fall a lot, but I don't quite think he has the all-around game that the other super stars have. But the one skill he does have is probably the most important these days. Second, I think with the two of them now playing beside each other, it's become pretty clear who the better player is between Curry and KD.

If I'm picking fights here, I'm fighting over CP3. Unless he's off your list because he's presently hurt, he shouldn't be. He's still very obviously a top-10 player. In fact, I really have a hard time understanding putting him below 7.

Curry has been their most productive player since Christmas to be honest. And as far as how the team performs, it's drastically better with Curry on the floor than vice versa (obviously best when both are on). His on/off is astronomical for how good they are as a team. Doesn't even make sense really.

Curry was/is still better than Westbrook, triple-doubles be damned.

shep33
02-10-2017, 04:24 PM
1. Bron
2. KD
3. Russy
4. Harden
5. AD
6. Kawhi
7. Curry
8. CP3
9. Boogie
10. Giannis
11. Klay
12. Butler
13. Lillard
14. Lowry
15. Irving

mrblisterdundee
02-10-2017, 04:28 PM
1. James
2. Durant
3. Harden
4. Westbrook
5. Leonard
6. Curry
7. Thomas
8. Davis
9. Butler
10. Cousins
11. Lowry
12. DeRozan
13. Giannis
14. Hayward
15. Wall

I value guards who are good on both ends of the floor, which is guys like Irving and Lillard didn't make the cut in place of guys like Lowry and Wall. Thomas, Harden and Curry all suck on defense, but they're significantly better offensively and at running the point.
Cousins, as usual, is the most difficult decision for me. He's so damn talented but volatile. I'm pretty sure his production isn't just a fluke of being the only star in Sacramento. He can score anywhere, and can even play good defense if he gives the effort, which I think he will if Sacramento can get him some help.

Heediot
02-10-2017, 04:44 PM
What translation occurs for the playoffs that is absent in the regular season

Some guys handle stingier defenses better and or some guys play better in pressure moments. Floppers like Harden, DD and Lowry won't get the same whistles they are used to in the regular season. Guys like IT who is smaller ins tature may not handle the more physical and stingier defense.

For example just watching the Raps and Heat series, and you can see old man Wade out play his guard counterparts. Overall in the playoffs last year, Lowry and DD pretty much underwhelmed.

A guy like PG can handle the physicality of the playoffs and Kyrie like Wade is skilled and crafty enough to overcome playoff style defense. PG also gives you that stingy defense and Kyrie is clutch as ****.

cmellofan15
02-10-2017, 06:21 PM
Lmfao the love for Westbrook is unreal. He's not better than Harden and he's not really even close to Curry

Vee-Rex
02-10-2017, 06:47 PM
The recency bias in this thread is so disgusting.

Shammyguy3
02-10-2017, 07:24 PM
Some guys handle stingier defenses better and or some guys play better in pressure moments. Floppers like Harden, DD and Lowry won't get the same whistles they are used to in the regular season. Guys like IT who is smaller ins tature may not handle the more physical and stingier defense.

For example just watching the Raps and Heat series, and you can see old man Wade out play his guard counterparts. Overall in the playoffs last year, Lowry and DD pretty much underwhelmed.

A guy like PG can handle the physicality of the playoffs and Kyrie like Wade is skilled and crafty enough to overcome playoff style defense. PG also gives you that stingy defense and Kyrie is clutch as ****.

I think it's true that some guys handle stingier defenses better than other players do, but that's not necessarily true in the playoffs. Generally teams have better defenses come playoff time, but it is easy to forget that these players also play those same teams in the regular season. One argues that players try harder in the playoffs - possibly. But, they also generally play more minutes each game in the playoffs (fatigue) and may be more banged up than they were in the regular season (again, fatigue).

I agree with the bolded - but that doesn't mean they don't get calls. James Harden has a career 55.7% free throw rate in the regular season with Houston, in the playoffs it is 52.8%. That's negligible. DeRozan has a career 40.6% free throw rate in the regular season, and a 36.8% rate in the post-season. Lowry has a 37.0% free throw rate with Toronto in his career for the regular season, and in the playoffs it is at 33.0%.

Those aren't significant drops in # of free throws attempted per field goal attempt.

Saying Kyrie is skilled/crafty doesn't mean he's better suited for the playoffs. It just means that he is skilled/crafty. It's not like he is at a disadvantage in the regular season with that skillset, but once the playoffs come it is a noticeably different type of advantage in his favor against other players in the playoffs.


And honestly - i'm not sure the playoffs are more "physical" anyway. Teams have better defenses usually, part of the reason they make the playoffs. But also, those defenses have to guard against much better offenses just the same. I think they cancel out.

Vee-Rex
02-10-2017, 07:31 PM
that is exactly how I feel. Do we pick who the best player is over the course of 100 games? Or are we taking the player we would all want in the finals? Because LeBron hasn't been the best player in the game from October-June the last few years. But, I am taking him in the biggest games over anyone until proven otherwise.

It's as simple as it sounds. I feel like people make it more complicated than it needs to be. Context is everything here.

If someone is obviously coasting, it's a choice they made. Who cares if they are capable or not to go full bore for an entire year? Westbrook is going all out every single game, because the only prize at the end of his year is the MVP. He's not winning a championship nor does he have a shot at it, so how fair is it to rank him above someone performing just as well who we know is conserving energy (because their organization's mentality is championship-or-bust)?

The key to determining the BEST player is to imagine if every player was playing like their life was on the line. Westbrook (as an example) would have no extra gear, whereas LeBron would.

Vee-Rex
02-10-2017, 07:38 PM
I think it's true that some guys handle stingier defenses better than other players do, but that's not necessarily true in the playoffs. Generally teams have better defenses come playoff time, but it is easy to forget that these players also play those same teams in the regular season. One argues that players try harder in the playoffs - possibly. But, they also generally play more minutes each game in the playoffs (fatigue) and may be more banged up than they were in the regular season (again, fatigue).

I agree with the bolded - but that doesn't mean they don't get calls. James Harden has a career 55.7% free throw rate in the regular season with Houston, in the playoffs it is 52.8%. That's negligible. DeRozan has a career 40.6% free throw rate in the regular season, and a 36.8% rate in the post-season. Lowry has a 37.0% free throw rate with Toronto in his career for the regular season, and in the playoffs it is at 33.0%.

Those aren't significant drops in # of free throws attempted per field goal attempt.

Saying Kyrie is skilled/crafty doesn't mean he's better suited for the playoffs. It just means that he is skilled/crafty. It's not like he is at a disadvantage in the regular season with that skillset, but once the playoffs come it is a noticeably different type of advantage in his favor against other players in the playoffs.


And honestly - i'm not sure the playoffs are more "physical" anyway. Teams have better defenses usually, part of the reason they make the playoffs. But also, those defenses have to guard against much better offenses just the same. I think they cancel out.

I think the regular season is easier for a player to play in. The amount of scheming and strategizing that takes place in the playoffs is enormous. It's almost night and day. Teams won't go to those lengths in the regular season because they gotta play 2 other teams that week and barely get practices in.

In the playoffs, that team has one and only one focus: YOU. Coaches are awake around the clock trying to figure out how to expose the opposing teams players. A player's weaknesses are highlighted 10x more in these situations and taken advantaged of. That's why you see guys drastically underperform in the playoffs. Exposure.

Defenses significantly improve in the playoffs, not only because guys are playing harder but because of game-planning. It's a real thing that is completely forgotten each and every year (around this time). Then when the playoffs roll around dudes are like... "Ohhhhh, so LeBron STILL IS the best in the world!"

The rankings of Stephen Curry are just pitiful. I have him as #2 (yep, above Durant) behind LeBron. I understand ranking Durant above Curry though I disagree, but anything lower than #3 for Steph is underrating him.

Shammyguy3
02-10-2017, 07:54 PM
I think the regular season is easier for a player to play in. The amount of scheming and strategizing that takes place in the playoffs is enormous. It's almost night and day. Teams won't go to those lengths in the regular season because they gotta play 2 other teams that week and barely get practices in.

In the playoffs, that team has one and only one focus: YOU. Coaches are awake around the clock trying to figure out how to expose the opposing teams players. A player's weaknesses are highlighted 10x more in these situations and taken advantaged of. That's why you see guys drastically underperform in the playoffs. Exposure.

Defenses significantly improve in the playoffs, not only because guys are playing harder but because of game-planning. It's a real thing that is completely forgotten each and every year (around this time). Then when the playoffs roll around dudes are like... "Ohhhhh, so LeBron STILL IS the best in the world!"

The rankings of Stephen Curry are just pitiful. I have him as #2 (yep, above Durant) behind LeBron. I understand ranking Durant above Curry though I disagree, but anything lower than #3 for Steph is underrating him.

But in the regular season the travel is more rigorous, you have back to backs, the amount of scheming that takes place in the playoffs is done by BOTH teams and all players so that cancels out. So it's not like "Oh ****, the playoffs are more physical and they can scout me!" and that's it because that offensive player has his entire team getting a gameplan together to attack the weaknesses of the defense too.

My list i guess would be

1. Lebron
2. Curry
3. Durant
4. Leonard
5. Harden
6. Westbrook
7. Paul
8. Davis
9. Butler

with these guys in some order: Thomas, Cousins, Green, Giannis, Lowry, and a mystery guy rounding out the rest of the top 15

Jets012
02-10-2017, 09:46 PM
How can anyone watch basketball and not put Paul high up. Baffles me.

Overall Rankings:
1) LeBron
2) KD
3A) Curry
3B) Paul
5) Kahwi
6) Westbrook
7) Harden
8) Cousins
9) Lowry
10) Davis
11) IT
12) Draymond
13) Giannis
14) KAT
15) Butler

Lowry is criminally underrated since he's not as flashy as some. Westbrook/Harden are freaks but that +35% usage while committing 5-6 TOs a game will never lead to big time winning (not that it's all their fault).

Davis puts up his empty numbers. Always has.

Draymond can't be a #1 anywhere, but the dude is fantastic at what he does. Arguably the most impactful defender in the league and he accomplishes so much for a guy that never needs the ball. IT can't defend for ****, but he's as good as it gets as an offensive PG.

tredigs
02-10-2017, 10:20 PM
How can anyone watch basketball and not put Paul high up. Baffles me.

Overall Rankings:
1) LeBron
2) KD
3A) Curry
3B) Paul
5) Kahwi
6) Westbrook
7) Harden
8) Cousins
9) Lowry
10) Davis
11) IT
12) Draymond
13) Giannis
14) KAT
15) Butler

Lowry is criminally underrated since he's not as flashy as some. Westbrook/Harden are freaks but that +35% usage while committing 5-6 TOs a game will never lead to big time winning (not that it's all their fault).

Davis puts up his empty numbers. Always has.

Draymond can't be a #1 anywhere, but the dude is fantastic at what he does. Arguably the most impactful defender in the league and he accomplishes so much for a guy that never needs the ball. IT can't defend for ****, but he's as good as it gets as an offensive PG.

Draymond def can't be a #1 as a scorer, but he'd be the best player on most teams. 4 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists, 7 steals (you read that right), 2 blocks on 2-3 from the field in the FIRST HALF against Memphis right now. Draymond is so ****ing good.

And agreed again with Vee-Rex on the laughable underrating of Curry in here.

Lakers + Giants
02-10-2017, 10:27 PM
Lebron

KD
Curry
Harden
Kawhi
Paul
Westbrook
Cousins
Davis
George
Butler
Irving
Lillard
Draymond
Thomas

zn23
02-10-2017, 10:45 PM
It's time to start put Jokic in the top 15...

Chronz
02-10-2017, 11:02 PM
Even with us losing so many members over the years, it's good to know we still have a never ending supply of idiots

Giannis94
02-10-2017, 11:31 PM
Even with us losing so many members over the years, it's good to know we still have a never ending supply of idiots
I was lost for a while, and then found salvation in PSD. Because PSD is lyfe. Bless up good soul.

Vee-Rex
02-10-2017, 11:43 PM
But in the regular season the travel is more rigorous, you have back to backs, the amount of scheming that takes place in the playoffs is done by BOTH teams and all players so that cancels out. So it's not like "Oh ****, the playoffs are more physical and they can scout me!" and that's it because that offensive player has his entire team getting a gameplan together to attack the weaknesses of the defense too.

My list i guess would be

1. Lebron
2. Curry
3. Durant
4. Leonard
5. Harden
6. Westbrook
7. Paul
8. Davis
9. Butler

with these guys in some order: Thomas, Cousins, Green, Giannis, Lowry, and a mystery guy rounding out the rest of the top 15

See, I don't think it works that way. I think the playoffs are essentially a higher platform, and some players are impacted more by it than others.

If you play a loose game at the gym then it's a lot easier for some bimbo to play fairly well. But if there are actual/higher stakes (especially money) and you have a group of guys who are gonna be locked in, then it's harder for that bimbo to be successful. It's a world of a difference... trust me.

As for scheming - defensive schemes focus on limiting specific players by targeting their weaknesses. Offensive schemes focus on scoring - no matter what and by any means necessary.

When the schemes ramp up in the playoffs, it's not just automatically balanced out by the offensive scheme. Defensive schemes often focus on limiting specific, game-changing players - offensive schemes focus on scoring, through any means necessary. The response to a defensive scheme that is focused on hard trapping or hard hedging and getting physical with Lowry will be to get Lowry's teammates involved to free up the pressure on Lowry - unless Lowry has the skill/talent to overcome that pressure on his own. When they can't overcome it, that's when you see the slippage in stats.

There's no black/white/2-sided or perfect balance thing happening here.

We watched Lillard have a great season last year, and then we watched Klay Thompson shut him down in the playoffs. Why? Because the Dubs game-planned well and Portland really had no answer. As a result, Lillard only had 1 good game in 5 total games. Lillard's entire scoring arsenal usually runs around the PnR. Pull-up 3's off the PnR and driving to the basket - easier to game-plan for.

Whereas guarding a player with a fuller scoring arsenal in Kyrie, he was a lot more difficult to game-plan for. You can scheme against team-based ball, but there's not much you can do vs. ISO scoring, especially if it's on a clearout. All of the deadliest scorers in the history of the game were extremely talented with ISO-scoring.

I strongly disagree that it just cancels out as you are saying and can point out a ton of players who notably loss production in their game because of the different nature of playoff basketball. Even the players themselves have said so themselves. When EVERY player is playing so intensely and the defensive scheme is sound, it makes it that much harder to play successfully if you don't have the natural skill/talent to do it.

This article is super old, but I feel it is still relevant (except for the pace which has increased):

http://articles.latimes.com/1991-06-01/sports/sp-2561_1_nba-playoffs