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  1. #1
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    Big Men Who Stretch the Floor Through the Ages

    Read a line in a Bosh HOF article that said something along the lines of Bosh being the guy who changed the game for big men as perimeter spacers and thought that felt like an exaggeration, so I thought it'd be cool to talk about stretch big men through the ages.


    1960s: Jerry Lucas

    Lucas was arguably the first stretch big, serving as a floor spacer next to Oscar Robertson. He had a strong career as a Kevin Love esque sidekick on a series of best in the league Royals offenses, averaging 19.7 points per game on a steady diet of long twos.

    https://www.basketball-reference.com...lucasje01.html

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=00ABo19ytxs

    1970s: Bob McAdoo

    1975 MVP Bob McAdoo is the guy to really dominate at a high level with a modern skill set. He was an incredible off ball mover for a big man, with a lethal catch and shoot game. To me McAdoo was Dirk before Dirk, only add nearly 4 offensive rebounds a game. One of the more lesser talk about superstars, likely because of his short prime. Still though, at his peak Bob McAdoo absolutely looked like an MVP caliber player, and was able to get his points as an off ball moving stretch big.

    https://www.basketball-reference.com...mcadobo01.html

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CuQ3unu2YAQ&t=79s

    1980s: Kiki Vandeweghe

    Man Kiki might be one of the most underrated scorers in league history. The dude averaged 29.4 points per game on 62% TS - league average at the time was 54%. This wasn't a one off fluke season either. From 1983 - 1987 he averaged 26.1 points per game on 61% TS. This carried over to the postseason as well, averaging 25 ppg on 60% TS from 1982 - 1987 (33 games).

    He technically played a mixture of small forward and power forward, but in today's game would absolutely be a PF. Vanderweghe's shooting skills at the time would be good enough today to be considered one of the best 3 point shooters in the league. It's crazy how ahead of his time he was, but how little he's talked about.

    https://www.basketball-reference.com...vandeki01.html

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8QJkg7ZyNCI


    Some other names that come to mind: Jack Sikma, Cliff Robinson, Rasheed Wallace, and then obviously Dirk who was used a ton as a center during the Nash era.

    What are your thoughts on these guys? Am I missing anyone?

  2. #2
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    Mehmet Okur, he was I guess technically after all the guys you mentioned but before Bosh. I feel like he as well was a bit ahead of his time but was a real weapon on those Jazz teams.

  3. #3
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    I think Sam Perkins was the first real stretch "big" I witnessed. Kiki and Cliff were tweeners and didn't count for me. When I saw Perkins a legit 4 who blocked shots and was a real big stepping behind the 3pt line it was definitely cool to see.

  4. #4
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    As a Rockets fan, I'll bring up my homer pick, but Rudy Tomjanovich has sometimes been credited (fair or not) with helping create the idea of a "stretch 4" in the early 90s when he started playing Robert Horry at the 4 instead of the 3. Horry was obviously not a superstar, but was a versatile guy who was huge for those championship teams in Houston.

    I don't think Horry gets nearly enough credit as one of the earliest stretch bigs in the league, in part because he was versatile and could guard multiple positions and do so many things as a glue guy. But the fact that he was known for his clutch 3-point shot-making prowess despite playing a huge chunk of his minutes at the 4 in his career doesn't get talked about enough.


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    Big Men Who Stretch the Floor Through the Ages

    Quote Originally Posted by mightybosstone View Post
    As a Rockets fan, I'll bring up my homer pick, but Rudy Tomjanovich has sometimes been credited (fair or not) with helping create the idea of a "stretch 4" in the early 90s when he started playing Robert Horry at the 4 instead of the 3. Horry was obviously not a superstar, but was a versatile guy who was huge for those championship teams in Houston.

    I don't think Horry gets nearly enough credit as one of the earliest stretch bigs in the league, in part because he was versatile and could guard multiple positions and do so many things as a glue guy. But the fact that he was known for his clutch 3-point shot-making prowess despite playing a huge chunk of his minutes at the 4 in his career doesn't get talked about enough.
    Robert Harry NOT getting enough credit might be something that happened in an alt dimension but not this one


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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by ewing View Post
    Robert Harry NOT getting enough credit is might be something that happened in an alt dimension but not this one


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    lol. I get your point, but I mean more in terms of stretch 4s. When you hear discussions of early stretch 4s in league history, I don't hear his name get brought up enough. And I get it; dude was no superstar. But being a 6'10" PF shooting 36-37% from the 3-point line in the mid-90s was super rare.


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    Andrea Bargnani 😆

  8. #8
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    Sam Perkins is a good one. I'm also thinking about those small ball lineups the Bulls would run with Kukoc at center. Shortened line era Kukoc shot 37% from 3 on 2.6 attempts. Laimbeer another guy who had a couple of seasons stretching out to the 3 point line.

  9. #9
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    Usually think of stretch bigs as C/PF than PF/SF so dont rewlly buy into Kiki. If you wanted to do someone in the 80s, Laimbeer probabky a better option.

    Sabonis as well though he didnt play in NBA until late 90s.

  10. #10
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    Magic? Started at center in game 6 of the 77 finals and took a 3 (and missed it).

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raps18-19 Champ View Post
    Usually think of stretch bigs as C/PF than PF/SF so dont rewlly buy into Kiki. If you wanted to do someone in the 80s, Laimbeer probabky a better option.

    Sabonis as well though he didnt play in NBA until late 90s.
    It's probably more Sikma for the 80s when we take into account actual 3 point volume, I just wanted to give Kiki a shoutout because he's a way more interesting player to me.

  12. #12
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    The 7'7 baby giraffe, Manute Bol. Damn sniper!
    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

  13. #13
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    It amazes me that guys like Rick Smits, Yao, and Detlef never really attempted 3s despite having the stoke


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    Quote Originally Posted by Raps08-09 Champ View Post
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  14. #14
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    Big Men Who Stretch the Floor Through the Ages

    Quote Originally Posted by Raps18-19 Champ View Post
    Usually think of stretch bigs as C/PF than PF/SF so dont rewlly buy into Kiki. If you wanted to do someone in the 80s, Laimbeer probabky a better option.

    Sabonis as well though he didnt play in NBA until late 90s.
    Yeah Kiki was not a PF imo. Only saw him at the tail end of his career but I definitely donít think he counts as a big.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Raps08-09 Champ View Post
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  15. #15
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    The great Brad Lohaus on the other hand really changed the game


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    Quote Originally Posted by Raps08-09 Champ View Post
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