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  1. #1
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    May 2013
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    Klay Thompson vs Khris Middleton

    I feel like Klay was always seen as the noticeably superior player, especially winning championship after championship with a stacked team. I was (and probably still) am part of the minority that thought Khris Middleton is >= Klay Thompson.

    When it comes to shooting, I think Klay is the superior off ball shooter, but I think Khris is the better on ball shooter in addition to being better at creating his own shot but for teammates as well. Both players are capable of posting up a little bit, but I think Khris edges him there too. Klay might be the better second option on a team but I'm not even fully convinced of that because they have essentially identical efficiency shooting numbers. Defensively, both are good defenders but I feel Khris is a more versatile defender. Khris is easily the better facilitator and rebounder. Khris is more clutch as well. Even though Khris wins in these categories, it's not by a significant margin, but I feel like because Klay has multiple rings, it would have been seen as ignorant to put Khris on par with him prior to this championship.

    How far (or close) apart are these players in your opinion?
    2015 Bull's Mock Trade Game Championship Team

    San Antonio Spurs

    PG: Chris Paul | Patty Mills | Jose Calderon
    SG: Khris Middleton | J.J. Redick | Iman Shumpert
    SF: DeMarre Carroll | P.J. Tucker | Anthony Morrow
    PF: Tim Duncan | Carlos Boozer | Kyle O'Quinn
    C : Al Horford | Rudy Gobert

  2. #2
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    By the way, if it isn't obvious, I think Khris is underrated af...
    2015 Bull's Mock Trade Game Championship Team

    San Antonio Spurs

    PG: Chris Paul | Patty Mills | Jose Calderon
    SG: Khris Middleton | J.J. Redick | Iman Shumpert
    SF: DeMarre Carroll | P.J. Tucker | Anthony Morrow
    PF: Tim Duncan | Carlos Boozer | Kyle O'Quinn
    C : Al Horford | Rudy Gobert

  3. #3
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    Nov 2008
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    13,110
    Middleton's defense has faltered a bit in recent years. He's not a bad defender, but I'd hardly say he's a plus defender anymore. It's hard to say what Klay will be defensively now, but prior to his injury, I think Klay was a slightly better defender, especially against true wings. Middleton sizes up a bit better than Klay, but if we're talking guards and perimeter players, Klay wad better.

    I think you're spot on for shooting. Klay is one of the best catch and shoot guys in nba history. Midds is a very good catch and shoot guy, but not on Klaus level. Midds is definitely a better creator and better at getting his look and hitting those contested shots.

    Right now, give me middleton over klay every time because I'm not sure what Klay is anymore. But if he returns to form, then they are very similar players overall with slightly different skill sets. So it's a bit of pick your poison. I think Klay fits really well with Steph and is probably better to pair with a guy like lillard or Durant or Harden or those types who are very ball dominant and get their own looks very easily. Khris probably fits better with the bigs like a giannis or embiid or others who may not be quite as elite at getting their own crunch time looks. Both fit with pretty much any team, but you can split hairs depending on what youre looking for.

  4. #4
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    Aug 2020
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    1,320
    Quote Originally Posted by Redrum187 View Post
    I feel like Klay was always seen as the noticeably superior player, especially winning championship after championship with a stacked team. I was (and probably still) am part of the minority that thought Khris Middleton is >= Klay Thompson.

    When it comes to shooting, I think Klay is the superior off ball shooter, but I think Khris is the better on ball shooter in addition to being better at creating his own shot but for teammates as well. Both players are capable of posting up a little bit, but I think Khris edges him there too. Klay might be the better second option on a team but I'm not even fully convinced of that because they have essentially identical efficiency shooting numbers. Defensively, both are good defenders but I feel Khris is a more versatile defender. Khris is easily the better facilitator and rebounder. Khris is more clutch as well. Even though Khris wins in these categories, it's not by a significant margin, but I feel like because Klay has multiple rings, it would have been seen as ignorant to put Khris on par with him prior to this championship.

    How far (or close) apart are these players in your opinion?
    Khris is nowhere the defender like Klay as he is the best 2 way guard in the league. Kley defense is closer to Jrue level which imo is the best defensive guard in the league! If the Bucks still had Bledsoe, the Bucks would have lost to the Heat in the playoffs again.

    I would trade Simmons for Jrue straight up right now!

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by cattusmaru View Post
    I would trade Simmons for Jrue straight up right now!
    Insult to Jrue.

  6. #6
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    I think you overstate Middleton's defense a little and understate Klay's that said, I think you make a lot of good points.

    At this moment it would be impossible to take Klay over Middleton since we don't know what he'll look like on either side of the ball. But before the injury, Klay was probably the better player, though some of that is just fit.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by beasted86 View Post
    Insult to Jrue.
    You stated both are overpaid players but now it's an insult to trade one for another?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by ciaban2.0 View Post
    I think you overstate Middleton's defense a little and understate Klay's that said, I think you make a lot of good points.

    At this moment it would be impossible to take Klay over Middleton since we don't know what he'll look like on either side of the ball. But before the injury, Klay was probably the better player, though some of that is just fit.
    Impossible for you but many would take Klay over Middleton any day of the week unless people already forgotten KD's injury who is now the best player on the Nets.

    Morey would offer the same deal he offered to Harden to Klay as well right now if he wasn't an untouchable.

  9. #9
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    Good thread, it gets at the age old debate about whether you want specialists who mastered skills vs jack of all trades kind of guy. Reminds of the Ray Allen vs Michael Redd debate, Redd was a similar shooter with a slightly superior all-around game IIRC but because you dont want either being the primary playmaker, you would rather have a true PG and then take the guy who fits best with that guy. And that was Ray Allen. Tho I've heard this same point in the Reggie vs Ray debate.

    Plenty disagreed when I said Middleton was the best player on those playoff Bucks squads before the freak truly blew up, but after he had already established himself as a rising star. My reasoning was because of what he could do when they weren't trying to develop/establish Giannis.

    In 2018, Giannis avg 25-10-5 to Middletons 20-5-4 but his scoring average(per36) was at 25 without Giannis on the floor. In 2019 his scoring rate went from 16.8 with vs 28.3 without.
    2020: 21.3 vs 30
    2021: 18.5 vs 28.1

    Then there was of course these playoffs where he eliminated the Hawks without Giannis in those final 2 games. My point is that its quite clear that Middleton has suppressed his game for the benefit of the team/Giannis. Now Giannis is clearly better now but even when he wasn't, Middleton still took the backseat. I remember the impact metrics stating that Middleton was more important/vital towards winning back then despite inferior individual stats. So suffice it to say, I have a large hard on for Middleton, bigger than all but the most fervent Bucks supporters.

    All those years we were debating Paul George vs Jimmy Butler when Middleton should have been in the convo as well. I truly believe if Giannis never joins him, he would have far more all-stars under his name and his stats would make it seem like a superstar has teamed up with Giannis, but because their pairing happened organically, people think of Giannis as a lone star.

    So I have him above Klay without a doubt. But I think its fair to say neither are guys you want leading your team, but I do believe Middleton is without a doubt better at it, Im not so sure Klay has that same potential in him for scoring outbursts, he hasn't really displayed that when Curry is out and I cant help but think the splash bros help each others game.


    As a #2, I still take Middleton. As a #3, thats where the specializations make a bigger difference because its almost impossible to get 3 guys to share the ball and still get their shine. Klay being a superior marksmen would prolly help punish defenses better as an outlet option. So you have to have 2 players better than Middleton is already before I take Klay.


    Thats assuming hes still Klay, hes no longer capable of checking PG's and I dont like him as a 3 as much as Middleton. Middleton has dropped off alot defensively but hes still got the size and versatility as he ages where Klay is definitely going to suffer without his lateral quicks.
    Last edited by Chronz; 07-24-2021 at 12:17 PM.
    Random Highlight of the Month: * RARE - Zo DUNKS on Shaq *

  10. #10
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    Middleton's ability to create for himself and others on ball while also being a viable catch and shoot threat is super valuable. I think Klay rode more on reputation than actual performance in 2019 defensively, and while still a better on ball defender than Middleton, has his own share of problems sticking to his man off ball, or getting out worked for positioning. I kind of agree with Chronz that as a second option give me Middleton, but as a third option/specialist Klay feels better.

  11. #11
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    Middletonís pulled about even with even a healthy, pre-injury Klay, IMO. The size advantage canít be ignored, as well as the additional assists and rebounds.


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