The progress of the center position in the NBA

The progress of the center position in the NBA

What does Shaq, Ewing, Olajuwon, Robinson, Mourning, Malone have in common? Beside being retired and Hall of Famers, they represented the true meaning of a classic center.

In the ’90s a true center had to be the biggest and the strongest player in his team, dominating the league in rebounds, point and blocks. They were monsters under the rim and their area of plays developed in the paint.

Nowadays, players like Brook Lopez or Joel Embiid are great three-point shooters, Nikola Jokic is a great playmaker, and leads his team, Denver Nuggets in assists. In the ’90s a center could have had a three only by scoring with fault.

The game is played at a faster pace, with many counter-attacks and players that can play almost every position.

The experts say that Steph Curry has an important role in this change of modern basketball, shooting threes like nobody’s business.

The best example is the comparison between the best three-point shooter in the 90’s and the best shooter of our generation, Steph Curry. In the 95-96 season, Dennis Scott scored 267 threes, taking eight shots per game, and making 3.3 of them. For Curry this would be a disappointing season, taking into consideration that in his best season, Curry scored 402 threes, in the 2015-2016 season.

Therefore, in this era of basketball, Shaq and other centers, even though they were great players of their times, would not be able to play at their best.

Nicolae Sorocan

The progress of the center position in the NBA