Jazz Player History: Karl Malone and career steals

Mar 09, 2012; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Utah Jazz forward Paul Millsap (24) and Philadelphia 76ers forward Andre Iguodala (9) go for a loose ball during the fourth quarter at the Wells Fargo Center. The Sixers defeated the Jazz 104-91. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-US PRESSWIRE

Did you know that this season Jazz power forward Paul Millsap is averaging 1.8 steals per game? For the season? That's huge. Especially since he still blocks about one shot a game, and does his dirty work on the glass. Sap has expanded him game . . . but did you know that Karl Malone is #11 ALL-TIME in career steals? (The only guys with more are John Stockton, Jason Kidd, a flying shoe salesman, Gary Payton, Maurice Cheeks, Scottie Pippen, Julius Erving, Clyde Drexler, Hakeem Olajuwon, and steals-master Alvin Robertson) Karl never got hurt and had great hands. As a result, he got a lot of steals and was a better defender than he was ever given credit for (only 4 All-Defensive teams?)

Here's an incomplete list of some of the guys Karl Malone has more career steals than:

  • Karl Malone (2,085 - HOF)
  • Mookie Blaylock (2,075)
  • Allen Iverson (1,983)
  • Derek Harper (1,957)
  • Isiah Thomas (1,861 - HOF)
  • Magic Johnson (1,724 - HOF)
  • Kobe Bryant (1,721 - current)
  • Charles Barkley (1,648 - HOF)
  • .
  • .
  • .
  • Robert Whaley aka Bobby Williams (7)

I really could have made the list longer, but REALLY, there are only 11 guys ahead of him all time. I think we will probably see Kobe overtake him, just like Kobe overtook him for being the best #13 draft pick ever. I'd expect LeBron James and Chris Paul to have shots at overtaking Malone as well; but right now they are #83 and #94 respectively on the career steals list. And again, right now Malone is at #11. A lot of casual fans don't know much about Karl, and probably think of him and steals and thinks of that Jordan strip in the NBA finals. Karl Malone stole the ball his fare share as well. Let's not forget that. The NBA record books will surely not.

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