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Tough Guys and Softies

butidonthavemoney
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Tough Guys and Softies

By Charley Rosen:

There are several categories that attempt to measure the true impact that any given NBA player has on games, the most common ones containing some sort of numerical evaluation. However, there are only two basic identities that interest the vast majority of scouts and coaches: Is a player a tough guy? Or is he a softie?

Let's use this yardstick to identify the most significant players in each of these groupings.

Tough guys
The sheer strength of an individual player does not necessarily qualify him as a legitimate banger. Brad Miller, for example, is a muscular, powerful player but at the same time, is far from being deemed a toughie by his peers.

The criteria here include a player's willingness to initiate contact, even when confronted with bigger, stronger adversaries. Another qualification is a player's eagerness to attack the hoop even though he knows he'll be knocked down. On the other hand, under the proper circumstances, a legitimate tough guy has no compunctions about flattening an opponent to prevent an easy shot.

Here, then, is a selected listing of the league's most dauntlessly tenacious performers.

Tony Allen: Getting to the basket is his specialty, even at the potential cost of incurring bruises, sprains and even fractures.

Ron Artest: Ron-Ron talks tough but usually backs up his boasts with sometimes over-the-top bullyboy tactics.

Renaldo Balkman: He doesn't play much these days but tries to include a game's worth of bumping and grinding in his abbreviated rotations.

Raja Bell: His belligerent defense displays no fear of, and little respect for, whomever he's guarding.

Reggie Evans: As a pocket-sized big man, Evans compensates for his shortcomings with his manically aggressive boardwork.

Matt Harpring: He plays basketball like a football player (which he once was) and plays so hard, in fact, that he injures himself more than he does his opponents.

Allen Iverson: He takes even the biggest of hits and keeps driving into the middle.

Dahntay Jones: He often plays defense as though he was involved in an anything-goes street fight.

Jason Maxiell: He relishes contact. Even when he's fouled, he often dispenses a harder hit than the one he takes.

Paul Millsap: If he can touch a loose ball, not even the Jaws of Life can pry it away.

Andres Nocioni: He's not only tough, but also ornery.

Kendrick Perkins: He plays with a perpetual snarl that mirrors his body-bumping game plan.

James Posey: For him, giving an inch on defense is like giving a mile.

Leon Powe: He's another smallish big who believes that basketball is a collision sport.

Kurt Thomas: Of necessity, he gets more physical as he ages. He's the active NBA leader in bruises inflicted on opponents.

Delonte West: In his own quiet way, West never gives up on a play and is never, ever intimidated.

Softies
If all softies are finesse players, not all finesse players are softies (i.e. Pau Gasol and Kevin Garnett). But the following players generally avoid contact whenever possible and try to run circle-routes around the most notorious of the league's tough guys.

Michael Beasley: He would rather put up a flipper than try to dunk over or through a nasty big man.

Marcus Camby: His idea of being tough is to take a charge.

Vince Carter: Watch how many fadeaway junk-shots he takes when approaching a crowd of hostile big men.

Brian Cook: He's happy to shuttle between the 3-point lines.

Mike Dunleavy, Jr.: He has to play soft because he's so physically weak.

Josh Howard: He runs the break, drives the baseline and shoots mostly pull-ups so that big men can't catch him.

Steven Hunter: He's a timid 7-footer who plays like a guard.

Kevin Martin: If he was just a mite tougher, he'd be a truly elite player.

Tracy McGrady: He's a leansome version of the Pillsbury Dough Boy.

Tim Thomas: He's just another cotton candy powerless forward.

Peja Stojakovic: Don't touch him, and he won't touch you.

And here are a couple of phony tough guys — chest-beating, cheap-shot artists who rarely take on bigger, stronger and/or authentically mean-spirited opponents: Kenyon Martin and Mikki Moore.

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http://msn.foxsports.com/nba/story/9914426/Who-are-the-NBA%27s-tough-guy...?

Good read. Thoughts?


Michael.S.
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Vince Carter: Watch how many

Vince Carter: Watch how many fadeaway junk-shots he takes when approaching a crowd of hostile big men.
yeah, and how many of them has he dunked on? Some of this stuff is legit other stuff is total nonesense.

McWinning
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put Dhamp on the list.

put Dhamp on the list.

Michael.S.
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Tough guys The sheer

Tough guys
The sheer strength of an individual player does not necessarily qualify him as a legitimate banger. Brad Miller, for example, is a muscular, powerful player but at the same time, is far from being deemed a toughie by his peers.

The criteria here include a player's willingness to initiate contact, even when confronted with bigger, stronger adversaries. Another qualification is a player's eagerness to attack the hoop even though he knows he'll be knocked down. On the other hand, under the proper circumstances, a legitimate tough guy has no compunctions about flattening an opponent to prevent an easy shot.

Ok , so wheres LBJ, Melo, and Wade?

QHaynes20
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Vince Carter and T-mac are

Vince Carter and T-mac are both soft. 100%

McWinning
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wheres Austin Daye?

wheres Austin Daye?

QHaynes20
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austin daye is not soft.

austin daye is not soft. plus he has not played a NBA game yet....

McWinning
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QHaynes20

are you crazy?

QHaynes20
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how are you gonna call

how are you gonna call someone who has not played in the NBA soft? That's like saying....oh he attacks the basket 100 times making him hard. based on college, he is a shooter.

McWinning
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QHaynes20

i guewss i cant call him soft until he plays, but he was really soft at Gonzaga.

QHaynes20
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no that soft. he went 15th

no that soft. he went 15th in the NBA draft...he must have some skills. Also, he averaged like 2.1 blks per game. I think he will shock alot of people

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Gerald Wallace

Dude's nickname is CRASH. He is often injured, but he is fearless when he attacks the rim. He has to be on the All-Tough Guy team.

Also, I used to love watching Brian Cardinal be the toughest softy ever. He would fight for the call and instantly do some kind of insane soft flop once he had the ref attention. Brian Cardinal, the grossest player to watch of all time.

JuicyMcnamus
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do stars not count?

caus Dwight Howard, KG, Shaq, Boozer, and D wade are pretty physical
and hit and run melo isnt tough

JNixon
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I would call Austin Daye

I would call Austin Daye finesse, not quite soft. He does avoid contact, but he does block shots and get rebounds at a great rate though (2 things that take toughness).

As for the softest players, I'd go with 2: Yao and Mike Dunleavy.

And for tough guys has to be Ben Wallace.

Meditated States
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Tony

Parker and Rondo pay the price everynight for attacking the rim, and the next night they do the same. If you watch a game of those two I want you to count how many times you see them knocked to the floor and get up. Paul Peirce is the toughest. Stabbed 11 times and a month and a half later he misses no training camp, no preseason and average 24 plus a night while missing no games all year. A beast. PP as tough as they come no one tougher, no one. He got shanked in August 11 times balling a month later like what?

the_truth34
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you

kidding me the only reason vince carter taking fade away shots is becuase he's old and to valuable to get injured for his team to win and pretty much all those players that are tough suck except AI and ron

llperez
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carter is soft

Even in his prime, he would settle way too often for tough fade aways instead of attacking the rim. He just fell in love with his jumper and decided it was easier then going hard all the time. He does have some of the sickest facials ever, but that don't make him tough.

butidonthavemoney
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Carter

Yeah he waits until the defender is in a bad position under the hoop and then dunks on them. There isn't anything tough about that.

Except on Zo...

IndianaBasketball
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I think a tough guy he

I think a tough guy he missed out on is Anthony Carter from Denver.

llperez
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the

the Zo dunk was nasty. If it was just about creating a highlight reel, then Carter is top 5 player all time. But he ain't tough. The toughest he ever acted was during the 2000 Olympics, and that was because he had a whole team of stars to watch his back. You don't see him get physical with anyone in the league. I'm not trying to sound like a hater, he is still an all-star in my book. Just don't confuse sick dunks with being tough.

McWinning
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is Tyros Thomas tough?

is Tyros Thomas tough?

llperez
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there's lots of guy that are tough

Tough is'nt about flexing your muscles and acting hard. It's guy's that play hurt, play through contact, don't back down to anybody at either end of the court, don't get pushed around. I could go on for days who I think is tough. Artest, Harpring, Pryzbilla, and don't sleep on how tough Corey Maggette is either. He don't back down from anything.

IndianaBasketball
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Oh yea... Harping and

Oh yea... Harping and Pryzbilla for sure. Harping is nasty.

Meditated States
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NO DOUBT

Harpring don't back down from no one. Forgot about him.

marcusfizer21
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The Peja comment makes me laugh loud

Peja Stojakovic: Don't touch him, and he won't touch you.

LOL!!!!!!!!!

The lake show2
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are you serious?..vince

are you serious?..vince waits till someone is in position under the basket then dunks on them???..thats the funniest thing i ever heard..have you ever watched vince...he used to dunk on you reguardless where u are. you can be under around near far he was putting it on youre head...he would do dunk contest dunks on peoples head...beasley though he doesnt dunk on people much isnt soft he does shoot the jumper alot but when the player checking you gives you the room thats what you do..when he does drive he goes right into the players body

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how t-mac soft he lean but

how t-mac soft he lean but he known for driving to the hoop and dunking on people are u just becoming a basketball fan u talking bout the mcgrady of now not the old mcgrady and he got 9 points for this i agree with everything accept for the mcgrady one

OrangeJuiceJones
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Can we put Spencer Hawes on

Can we put Spencer Hawes on the softie list?

butidonthavemoney
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Quincy Hodges, Bryant24

Vince Carter is a great dunker but again, that doesn't make him tough. He can jump and is strong but he certainly doesn't play physical.

T-Mac isn't tough on defense and he goes down with an exciting new injury every few weeks.

That is why the two were on the softie list.

I didn't write the article. It was written by Phil Jackson's former assistant coach, and he has been watching basketball long before you. He has actually written 15 books about the game, so the whole "are u just becoming a basketball fan" comment was a ways off. If you disagree with the content take it up with Charley Rosen.

http://msn.foxsports.com/writer/archive?authorId=227

ItsVictorOladipo
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Blake Griffin is gonna be on

Blake Griffin is gonna be on everybodys tough guy list soon

The lake show2
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you cant be a softie just

you cant be a softie just because youre game isnt physical. most pg game isnt physical but that doesnt make them soft as well as alot of sg

butidonthavemoney
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Carter

He runs away from anything physical.

I disagree, many points play very physical.

Chris Paul, Deron Williams, Rajon Rondo, Derrick Rose, Allen Iverson, Jason Kidd, Chauncey Billups all embrace contact and use it to their advantage on offense and/or defense.

Steve Nash doesn't play physical and is considered soft. He is still a great point guard but he is soft. If he had a 43 inch verticle and a 220 pound frame, he would still be soft.

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