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Daily Commentary for 2022-05-27

My Favorite Ranking Question and Why by Mark D. Hauser

The Top 25 NBA Players of All-time, of all the almost 2000 ranking questions on the site, is my favorite for several reasons. First of all, basketball is my second favorite sport to watch (the NFL edges it out).

Second, it is easier (and hence, more likely to be accurate) to compare basketball players than, say, football. For example, it is hard to compare a quarterback with a center. But, in basketball, the position that you play (at least since 1979) does not effect how much you can dominate on the court.

Third, unlike baseball, you actually have to have watched the players play to rate them accurately. As an astute friend of mine (a big baseball fan) pointed out when we were discussing a related topic, in baseball, he posited, you can just look at the numbers and probably be 90-95% accurate in your rankings (if there was a "true actually ranking"). This is obviously because there is a lot more teamwork in basketball than in baseball. And, hence, there is more of an opportunity in basketball to improve (or lower) your greatness with great (or a lack of) teamwork.

Fourth, in basketball, unlike football, you are required to play both offense and defense.

Fifth, in basketball, more than any other team sport (at least of the team sports that are currently popular in the US), a great player can influence a game and hence, have more of an affect on how many championships he teams wins. (Only a quarterback in football comes close.) And how much weight you put on the number championships a great player wins will influence your ranking of him. How much credit do you give Russell for the 11 Celtics' Championships? How much do you blame Chamberlain (2) and Robertson (1) for so few championships?

Sixth, in case you have not figured it out by now (by other things that I have written), Michael Jordan is my favorite athlete of all-time.

PREDICTION: Look for Kobe to have big game and for the Lakers to pull off a sight upset and win in San Antonio tonight.


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Past Commentaries

My Favorite Three-Headed Monster To Win The NBA Championship is ... by Donald Chisholm, II
Baseball Doesn’t Have to Be Perfect by Sally Solomon
My Favorite Ranking Question and Why by Mark D. Hauser
Why are None of the White NBA Stars from the US? by Mark D. Hauser
No Bite for Tiger in U.S. Open by Joe Miegoc
The Emergence of the Terrific Trio by Chris Marlow
Baseball in DC a Disaster by Steven Lienert

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