PRUETT COLUMN: Defense missing as Warriors dominate

Published 2:18 pm Saturday, December 12, 2015

The Golden State Warriors are great. There is no mistaking that fact.

However, all the Warriors have done is make me realize more and more how much I miss the old days of the NBA.

Bring back the mid-1990s New York Knicks. Where is the physical play of Michael Jordan and Charles Barkley?

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Steph Curry is the game’s best player over the past two seasons, but if Curry played in the days of Jordan and Barkley, he would average about 15 points per game.

The guys back in those days would not have put up with the Warriors jacking up 30 three-pointers game in, game out.

Dennis Rodman would have made sure of that, and the Bad Boys from Detroit certainly would put some bruises on Curry and Klay Thompson.

Ah, those were the days.

I grew up a Knicks fan solely because of their style of play. Anthony Mason was a brute and even John Starks would mix it up with guys much bigger than him.

You had to be this way because the rules were a lot more relaxed back in the good days of basketball.

Now, you better not even think about putting a finger on Curry when the ball is in his hands.

This was done because the NBA decided the game was missing offense. Well, now the game is missing the part of the game called defense.

When I was growing up, everyone, thanks to Nike commercials, wanted to be like Mike. This meant from high school to college to the pros. Players drove to the basket just like Mike.

So when you did drive to the hole, you expected guys like Bill Laimbeer to make sure your body did not leave the paint the same way it entered.

The trickle down effect of Curry shooting treys will soon make its way onto the high school courts.

Coaches will buy into the thought of the three-pointer being more important than getting the ball down low to a post and point guards will think shoot before pass. I have seen this already start to show in several games this year.

This has made me miss a guy named John Stockton. He did his job as a point guard to perfection. He looked to pass first, and you can be sure he was going to play defense on the other end.

Go watch James Harden play basketball. He might be a shooting guard, but he takes way too many shots and needs 30 shots to score 40 points. He can’t even spell defense if given the three E’s, the D and F.

If any young basketball player is reading this and wants to impress me on the court, start working on your defense more than your offense because a steal can lead to an easy bucket and then look to get your teammates involved in the game. If a defense has to cover more than one guy, open shots will soon follow.

If it was good enough for some of the NBA’s all-time best, it is good enough for everyone else.

Gabriel Pruett can be reached at 721-2436 or On Twitter: @PANewsGabe.

About Gabriel Pruett

Gabriel Pruett has worked with both the Port Arthur News and Orange Leader since 2000. A majority of the time has been spent covering all aspects of Southeast Texas high school sports. Pruett's claim to fame is...being able to write his own biographical information for this website.

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