Rasheed Wallace has had one of the more successful NBA careers, but it often goes unnoticed. Wallace was selected by the Washington Bullets with the number four pick in 1995, is a four-time NBA All-Star, and won an NBA title with the Detroit Pistons in 2004.
Wallace was drafted by the Bullets in 1995 right in the midst of the Michael Jordan era. Where there was hand checking and referees were a lot stricter with their whistles. Wallace notes the difference in physicality between the era in which he played and the way the game is played today. He believes that the stars of today such as Kevin Durant would not be as good if they played in his era.
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Wallace Says Durant Wouldn’t Have Been Successful in the 90’s
“In that era? No, I don’t think he would’ve had too much success,” Wallace said of Durant during an appearance on the Million Dollaz Worth of Game podcast in November 2020. “Now, he’s a monster. You have to look at it this way, back then, there were a lot of post-ups. Back then, the game was inside-out. Now, it’s outside-in.”
Wallace also said something similar of Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James. He notes that James would have more success than KD but still would not have achieved as much success in the 90’s as he has done in today’s NBA.
“He probably would’ve done good with his physical stature, with him being bigger than the majority of the rest of the players,” Wallace said per The Sports Rush. “So, he probably would’ve held his own, but I don’t think he would be as successful as he is now. It’s a whole different era back then. I couldn’t necessarily say that he would’ve been a beast, but I think he would’ve held his own.”
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Scottie Pippen Unloads on Kevin Durant
Some of the most noted NBA legends have declared open season on KD ever since he left Oklahoma City to join the Golden State Warriors in 2016. The latest offender is NBA Hall of Famer Scottie Pippen who took shots at Durant this summer for his failure to lead the Nets deeper into the playoffs.
“But you put KD in Brooklyn, and Kyrie [Irving] gets hurt and James Harden ain’t that guy, now KD not only has to score for them but also make plays for them. And this is no knock to KD, but they asked me, “Has he surpassed LeBron James?” And my answer was: LeBron James knows team basketball better than KD,” Pippen said to Tyler R. Tynes of GQ per NBC Sports.
“This is the first time we’ve ever really seen Kevin Durant have to be the man and bring the team home. We ain’t never really had to see that because he’s had [Russell] Westbrook, Steph Curry, Klay [Thompson]. He’s been beating people, definitely in Golden State, by committee. With a team. He did that, but that team already knew how to win without KD.”
Whether you love him or hate him, one thing that you can’t deny is that Durant has already solidified his status as a first-ballot Hall of Famer. Depending on how successful his next few years with the Nets are, he could end up going down as one of the all-time greats.
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