Gary Payton caused quite a stir when he said this.
. John Stockton is because I liked him when I was playing basketball. Everyone said he was dirty. He wasn’t as athletic as us. But he was smarter than us. We knew what he was going to do. We knew he was going to set [tough] picks. We had all the videos on Utah. We were so dumb. We would get caught up with the picks and get mad at him. He would shoot eight times and make nine. Shoot eight free throws and make seven. He’d have 15 assists and four steals. A complete game. That’s just the way he was and I idolized him…"
Oh that's just Gary saying that John Stockton was a complete player. This is what set people off.
"Those battles were a little easier. I would have Jordan get mad at me and go back at me. He knew he was really talented and could do whatever he wanted to. But [Stockton] was more of a challenge to me than guarding someone that would talk back to me. When you talk back to me and say something to me it made my game go to another level. John was one who wouldn’t say nothing and you couldn’t figure him out. He’d keep going in the pick and rolls and he and Karl Malone would score a big bucket. At times I would guard Jordan and get him mad and into other things."
Now many who drink from breast milk that is the Air Jordan life might freak out about this statement. Those who watched John Stockton play will know different. Stockton could have been a great scorer. In fact, he was. But he wasn't a volume scorer because he believed in the team concept. He sacrificed for his team. It was that ability that made him difficult to guard.
Michael Jordan was a scorer. Everyone knows he could score on anybody and attempted, and succeeded, to do so. But that which made Michael Jordan great also made him one dimensional. John Stockton was unpredictable and unreadable. While Michael was known for his antics John Stockton was cold as ice on the court. His approach to the game of basketball was almost telekinetic. Karl Malone and he would read pick and rolls with deadly accuracy and make the flex offense look like an offensive tank that could make any defense bow down to its will. Gary Payton, while many mock him for his views on guarding Michael Jordan vs John Stockton, understood this being a point guard. He knew if a point guard could mask his decision making he would then become invincible on the court. The Floor General could be a god if his reads were stealth. Good on you, Gary, for telling people how you see the game rather than what every media pundit wants to believe it's like.
Are you going to be in the Indiana area? Want to see Gordon Hayward? Do I have a deal for you.
Yes, Gordon Hayward will be there. If many of you don't know what SVSP is it is the Indiana equivalent of P3 except less beaches. It's the reason David Locke thought that Gordon Hayward wasn't being a good leader and meeting with the team in Santa Barbara.
This still pains me to read this. John Stockton described Jeff Hornacek as a godsend. Why did he say that? Was it because of his amazing shooting? Was it because of his flexibility in the offense? Was it because of his stout defense? Was it because of his free throw ritual? From Moni's Blog:
Jeff Hornacek was a "godsend." The Jazz went on a winning streak after his arrival and began winning consistently on the road for the first time. Basketball skills aside, Hornacek’s basketball IQ was invaluable to the Jazz.
During games, Horny would draw plays on his hand while calculating in his head the shooting percentages of every player on the floor. He would tell his teammates which opponents to let shoot and which teammates to give the ball to.
Yes. Cry, Jazz fans. Cry. That "godsend" used to be on the Utah Jazz coaching staff. Now he's collecting checks from the Phoenix Suns.
[Spoiler Alert: Tyrone Corbin was not mentioned as a godsend when he played alongside John Stockton for the Utah Jazz.]
Ben Golliver of the Point Forward wrote this wonderful tidbit about Andris Biedrins and Richard Jefferson. God have mercy on the Jazz if Tyrone Corbin loses his collective mind, or returns to it, and plays these guys.
DeAndre Jordan seriously is one funny guy. He seems like a guy anybody would love to hang out with. Case in point.
Now if the current Utah Jazz would do this who would be whom?