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Thursday, January 17, 2019

Gary Payton could not play basketball in this ‘soft era’

Gary Payton

While Gary Payton was more than capable on the offensive end of the floor, his calling card was tough, suffocating defense. With the way the NBA has changed, the style of defense we saw when Payton was in his prime is quite different than what we’re watching today.

On Saturday, Payton offered his feelings on the current state of the game and, not surprisingly, called the current version “soft.”

While it’s still basketball, those who played in the 80s and 90s may find today’s game unrecognizable with the lack of hand checks and technical fouls for what may not have been a common foul 20-30 years ago. The game has evolved into one with a faster pace and less physicality.

Perhaps it’s a good thing Payton came along when he did. His style of play meshed much better with the era he played in. Today, Payton would have obviously signed bigger contracts, which he may have needed considering how much he thinks he would have had to pay in fines.

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