Chris Broussard: “Talk about the difference in you playing in your era and today’s point guard era. They’re great players, we’re not taking anything away from them, but the game is so different. They dominate the ball, and that’s the reason these numbers are where they are at with these guys.”
Isiah Thomas: “I would go back to the coaching and also the schemes in terms of their rules. The rules definitely favor the guards. If you are 6’5” and under all the rules favor you now, whereas when I played, all the rules were really against you and they favored the 6’7” and above player. Now, when you look at the offensive system that teams run they’re not trying to get closer to the basket, actually the further away from the basket you are the more rewarded you are, and the more your team talks about ‘spacing’ and everything else now. Offensively there is not a lot of down screens, cross screens, flair screens, and back screens, there is absolutely none of that, which allows you to get closer to the basket. Right now, it’s like you stand in those five spots and you have to be skilled enough to shoot from those five spots, or dribble between your legs and get to the basket. So you really only need to master three skills now offensively to be great as a basketball player. You have to have a three-point shot, you have to have the layup, and be a good foul shooter. When I was playing you had to have maybe 10 things you had to do to be a good offensive player.” (Full Segment Above)
Listen to NBA Hall of Fame point guard Isiah Thomas join The Odd Couple with Chris Broussard and Rob Parker to discuss the differences between the point guard position in the modern NBA compared to the point guard position when he played in the 80’s and 90’s in terms of the skills required, and the responsibilities of the position, as well as the differences in rules between the two eras that overwhelmingly favored bigger players in the past with legal hand-checking.
Check out the segment above as the Detroit Pistons ‘Bad Boys’ legend details to Chris and Rob why he thinks that there is fewer ‘skills’ these point guards have to master to succeed at a high level on the offensive end, whereas Isiah points out that a 1980’s point guard was asked to do a lot more during an era with very little three-point shooting.