So I got into an argument with my friend earlier, which might have potentially ended in me respectfully declaring him an idiot in a public restaurant.
He said that DWade in his prime was a better shooting guard than Kobe in his prime. He told me to look at 08-09 DWade stats, who averaged 30.2 ppg, 7.5 assists, and 5 boards. If he are looking just at stats, Kobe's arguably best season was his 05-06, where he averaged 35 ppg, 5 boards, 5 assists. Dwade shot 49%, whereas kobe shot 45%. Kobe got to the free throw line at a higher clip, as well as shoot threes at a higher percentage. I was arguing that yes, Dwade is a great player (especially his 08-09 season), but Kobe's ability to impact the game in a variety of ways was what made me think his peak is better than DWade's peak. They can both guard 1-3, but Kobe could even shift on undersized fours as he is a few inches taller with comparable athleticism in their primes. Dwade depended on his midrange shot to fall if he wanted to penetrate, whereas Kobe could already post up and draw double teams.
Anyways, I wanted your opinions on this...thoughts?
I think you're right and Kobe at his peak was better than Wade, but I don't think it is by that much. Most Laker fans would probably go ballistic even bringing up this question, but it's not who has been the better player over his whole career (in which case the scales tip more in Kobe's favor), it's who was better at their peak. It's easy to forget how devastating Wade was for those few years from 06-09. You couldn't stop him from getting to the lane, he could be a terror on defense, and he was an excellent passer and rebounder. He was one of the 3-5 best players in the game. But Kobe at his peak was just unstoppable offensively. Young Kobe was one of the most athletic players the league has seen, Old Kobe is one of the most skilled, and for a few years when he his skills caught up to his athleticism there wasn't anything he couldn't do offensively. Wade was a good postup player but Kobe probably has the edge there, and Kobe was a significantly better shooter.
Wade does have the higher Fg% in his favor, and a lot of analytic measures are not too kind to Kobe in terms of his efficiency, but this is one of the cases where I disagree, having watched both guys. Injuries had an effect on Wade's career, whereas Kobe was injury free until this year. Its too bad cause if Wade would have been able to sustain his level of play during his peak maybe he could have posed a challenge to Kobe for better career.
I'll take Wade's 08-09 season over any one of Kobe's. That year Wade was coming back from winning Gold in Beijing, was finally healthy, and went on a complete tear.
And if you want a smaller sample, Wade's 2006 performance in the Finals was more impressive than any of Kobe's playoff performances.
A complete tear that led him to being ousted in the first round shooting 43%. You mention the gold medal but Kobe was the leader of that same gold medal team. And if we are going with small sample size than how about Kobe's 43.4 ppg month a few years back where he lit up both Lebron and Dwade during that same month...Also Kobe has easily had several playoff runs (if we are only looking at 5-6 games for a "playoff performance") averaging those numbers if not better. Here is the biggest thing, you're picking a player that in his "peak" averages misses one out of every eight games.
It's hard to advance past the 1st round when your team's 2nd best player was Michael Beasley his rookie year. Marion didn't play in the playoffs and you had the corpse of Jermaine O'Neal as the team's 3rd best player. On a similar note, I didn't see a prime Kobe leading his team to the 2nd round back in 2006 and 2007 -- and he had an even better #2 in Odom.
You can bring up Kobe's month of 40-something ppg, but it should be noted that he accomplished that during the middle of the regular season. What happened when he reached the playoffs? He was sent packing in the 1st round and was sitting on his couch as he watched Wade single-handedly lead his team to a championship.
No doubt Kobe has had the better career, I'm certainly not disputing that notion. But in my humble opinion, at their absolute best, I think Wade was a slightly better player.
This is a totally ridiculous argument. Kobe Bryant is the second best shooting guard in NBA history. People forget how incredible he was during those first 3 championships. Kobe at his peak couldn't be touched by anybody playing currently not even Lebron. He dropped 40 at will on who ever. Didn't matter. he scored 81 points for crying out loud. Wade on his hottest day couldn't even think about coming close to that. Plus you fell to mention that Wade doesn't have 3 point range. that argument was a waste of time. I would have walked away immediately.
Bryant became a better 3 pt shooter in his career and overall a better shooter majority of his career. I remember wade only made 12 3s in a season. Wade seems to be more of a stand still, off the dribble and going toward his left type of shooter. Bryant became great because he can go left/right to shoot and fadeway but wade had and still shows his step back is lethal.