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Old 06-24-2006, 07:39 PM   #1
WADE MONEY
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Default who is a more effective defender, Jordan or Pippen?

I'm not talking potential, I'm talking actual results, so don't try to make the argument that Jordan COULD've been better since he was also the main offensive option for the bulls. And to keep it simple, let's make this a comparison between 91 jordan and 95 pippen.
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Old 06-24-2006, 07:45 PM   #2
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no compare it to an 87-88 jordan and pippen doesnt even come close. first of all pippen never won a dpoy and jordan won multiple and pippen spg is way lower than jordan's. only advantage pippen got is the first team defense which he had 9 times
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Old 06-24-2006, 07:48 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by yeahwhathesaid
no compare it to an 87-88 jordan and pippen doesnt even come close. first of all pippen never won a dpoy and jordan won multiple and pippen spg is way lower than jordan's. only advantage pippen got is the first team defense which he had 9 times

I don't think spg is the best (or even a particularly good measure) of defense. Someone like Larry hughes can gamble on defense and get 2.5 steals a game. Bowen averages less than 1 a game if I remember correctly and he is known as a lockdown defender, even if he's also known as a dirty one. Also, kirk hinrich is probably never gonna win defensive player of the year. Doesn't mean he's inarguably inferior to someone like ron artest.
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Old 06-24-2006, 08:06 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by yeahwhathesaid
no compare it to an 87-88 jordan and pippen doesnt even come close. first of all pippen never won a dpoy and jordan won multiple and pippen spg is way lower than jordan's. only advantage pippen got is the first team defense which he had 9 times

Jordan also got first-team defensive honors 9 times.

However, although I think that he was a better defender than Pippen when he wanted to be (where do you think Pippen learned to be a great defender from?), Pippen probably has the slight edge in "results" as you say. Some things to keep in mind when making this comparison, however:


-- Their defensive primes were at different times, and only coincided for a year or so. Jordan's defensive prime was from '88-'93, while Pippen's defensive prime was from '93-'97 imo. Therefore, anyone who mostly saw the second three-peat Bulls will almost invariably take Pippen, since he was in his defensive prime, while Jordan was past his (though still excellent on that end of the floor).

-- They had different defensive strengths. My personal opinion is that Jordan was better on the ball in an isolation situation while Pippen was slightly better in terms of team defense (i.e., plugging holes, rotating etc.); Jordan was a better post and fastbreak defender (by a good margin), while Pippen's length made him more of a shotblocking threat on the ball (e.g., to surprise the ball out of a shooter's hands; Pippen was also a better "quick jumper" for blocks on the interior than Jordan was; Jordan had better shotblocking instincts than Pippen overall in terms of off-the-ball blocks, however). They both had great hands for strips, with Jordan having the slight edge. Pippen generally had a wider defensive stance (or at least maintained a wider stance more frequently), which prevented players from getting past him, while Jordan was better at moving his feet. Both had phemonenal defensive instincts (for steals/deflections etc.), though I'd give Jordan the slight edge. Pippen was longer (obviously), but Jordan was quicker, so the space each could cover on the court was similar. They were the #1 and #2 best post helpers in the league for nearly a decade, and Jordan in particular was very adept at reading post situations from the weak side (e.g., he could tell if a post player was going to wheel into the middle or spin baseline, and when they would do so). Both were great at reading plays and snuffing them out (e.g., if a team was trying to run a curl for their SG, or a dive to the basket for their big man, MJ and Pippen would get there first to interfere with the play).


Keep in mind that these advantages for each player are all very slight. For example, Pippen was fantastic against SG/SF's in isolation situations, and Jordan was a great team defender. What puts Pippen over the top by a hair imo is the consistency of his effort on the defensive end. Jordan was incredibly consistent from '88-'93, but pulled it back a bit during that second three-peat due to age and the burden of being his team's primary offensive weapon. Even from '92-'93 Pippen was very consistent, as much so as Jordan. Therefore, overall, Pippen gets the nod.


Anyone saying it's "no contest" (as many on forums are wont to do for some reason) is foolish, though, and likely never saw '88-'93 Jordan (or, at the very least, '95-'98 Pippen is fresher in their minds). I've seen each of them do things defensively that they other didn't (and likely couldn't).

Last edited by Loki : 06-24-2006 at 10:37 PM.
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Old 06-24-2006, 08:07 PM   #5
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There is Loki, just on time in a Jordan thread.
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Old 06-24-2006, 08:09 PM   #6
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There is Loki, just on time in a Jordan thread.

Are you my official stalker now?
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Old 06-24-2006, 08:16 PM   #7
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Maybe or maybe I just feel like you're a Jordan groupie.
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Old 06-24-2006, 08:19 PM   #8
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...or maybe I just feel like you're a Jordan groupie.

And I've never denied that I am. All I can do is buttress my opinions with adequate reasoning, though.
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Old 06-24-2006, 08:20 PM   #9
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And I've never denied that I am. All I can do is buttress my opinions with adequate reasoning, though.

True. Can't blame the dude. His opinions are well thought out and thoroughly explained.
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Old 06-24-2006, 09:24 PM   #10
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pippen. jordan was allowed to mug a few guys. guys with a nice crossover and first step could get by him a la tim hardaway, iverson. of course he was long enough to block from behind. that's why he got so many blocks. he could also get them on bigs from behind. jordan also knew how to use the big guys behind him. pippen was better on the ball and could defend more positions. it's rare the best defender will lead in steals because great defenders dont reach or gamble often. artest is an exception. this years top 5 leaders in steals are hughes,wade,arenas,smush parker and caron butler. none of them are great on ball defenders. all that said jordan was a good, committed defender but pip was a tad better on the ball.
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Old 06-24-2006, 09:30 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yeahwhathesaid
no compare it to an 87-88 jordan and pippen doesnt even come close. first of all pippen never won a dpoy and jordan won multiple and pippen spg is way lower than jordan's. only advantage pippen got is the first team defense which he had 9 times

Actually, Jordan only won the DPOY award once.
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Old 06-24-2006, 09:34 PM   #12
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I'd say they were pretty even defensively, but I'd give the slight edge to MJ, in my opinion, Regardless though, they're two of the all-time best defensive players.
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Old 06-24-2006, 09:56 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by allball
pippen.

Okay so far...

Quote:
jordan was allowed to mug a few guys.



Jordan's defense was actually cleaner than Pippen's, believe it or not.

Quote:
guys with a nice crossover and first step could get by him a la tim hardaway

Not sure what games you were watching, but in the 4 Golden State/Chicago games that I have on DVD from the early 90's, Jordan was put on Hardaway when Tim was burning Pax and BJ specifically to slow him down and limit his penetration, which he did for the most part. Hardaway did no damage against Jordan in the games I have (though it's admittedly a small sample).

Quote:
iverson

Jordan was 34 years old and well past his defensive prime; AI was 21. Iverson is also possibly the quickest player to ever play the game, and is 6-7" shorter than Jordan. And he was allowed to carry the ball a ridiculous amount on that crossover-- guys from Jordan's generation simply weren't used to defending "new school" crossovers like that (which AI introduced to the league, really), and so weren't prepared. Regardless, Jordan recovered and missed blocking AI's shot by a fraction of a second. Take 10 years off of Jordan's legs and he sends Iverson's shot into the second row. And if he was younger, he wouldn't have had to "bite" on the cross as much as he did because he could have relied on his foot speed, rather than having to anticipate which direction AI was going in.


Kobe is getting burned by guys like Barbosa now, at age 27 (not 34)-- does that mean that he's not a great defender? Of course not. Artest got burned by Wade a couple of years ago in the playoffs (at age 25, not 34) -- is Artest not a great defender now? The size difference between Artest and Wade is much less than between MJ and AI, mind you, to say nothing of their respective ages.

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of course he was long enough to block from behind. that's why he got so many blocks.

That's far from the only reason he got so many blocks. His weakside help and defensive instincts were phenomenal. Go watch some games.

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jordan also knew how to use the big guys behind him.

What big guys behind him? Jordan never played with what could be called a competent shotblocking big man. That's what makes Jordan and Pippen's defense so unbelievable, actually-- they did it without any sort of interior defensive presence.

Quote:
pippen was better on the ball

Pippen was not better on the ball. In fact, if Jordan has a single advantage on Pippen defensively, this is it.

Quote:
and could defend more positions

True. Pippen could occasionally defend some of the more "finesse" PF's like Larry Nance (but never true bangers like, say, Malone). So Pippen could guard 1-4 and Jordan could guard 1-3, while doing a better job on 1's and 2's in one-on-one situations.


Quote:
it's rare the best defender will lead in steals because great defenders dont reach or gamble often

Jordan reached when he knew he had the pick. Alvin Robertson (another great defender) was a master at this. Besides which, most of Jordan's steals came off the ball, by way of anticipation and reading plays. He was also a master at "turning" an offensive player by beating them to their initial spot on a drive attempt and then stealing the ball as they tried to spin if they weren't protecting it. Jordan was a very fundamentally sound defender, save for some times when he was trying to generate turnovers and force the action to get back into games.

Quote:
all that said jordan was a good, committed defender but pip was a tad better on the ball.

Jordan was quite a bit better than a "good" defender, dude. Phil Jackson called him "the best defender of his generation," and he was generally considered the best (or one of the top three along w/Hakeem and DRob) defensive player in the league from '89-'93-- even Jerry West called him the best defensive player in the league in '92. Whether or not you feel that that's hyperbole, I think it's clear that he was a bit beyond "good."

I have no problem with anyone saying that Pippen was better (heck, even I said Pip was better, but not for the reasons you've cited), but some of your comments lead me to believe that you didn't see Jordan in his defensive prime, only from '96-'98 (and possibly on Washington). That's just how it seems to me.

Last edited by Loki : 06-24-2006 at 10:41 PM.
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Old 06-24-2006, 11:23 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Jerm
Maybe or maybe I just feel like you're a Jordan groupie.

then does that make you a loki groupie, since you commented on this thread not because of any interest in the topic but because loki replyed with a throughly detailed post?

ur a dumb ass jerm, everyone knows that, get outta here and go to africa
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Old 06-24-2006, 11:27 PM   #15
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Kobe is getting burned by guys like Barbosa now, at age 27 (not 34)-- does that mean that he's not a great defender? Of course not.

Actually I do think Kobe is overrated on defense base on that fact alone-- he can't keep up with anyone under 6'4 it seems, he gets burned on a REGULAR basis by the likes of Bibby, Parker, Chauncey, Barbosa, it's not just one time get burned, it's consistently, if say, the Lakers are getting torched and the coach goes "Kobe, I need you to guard bibby/parker/nash/chauncey and shut him down"

Kobe wouldn't be able to do it. He's effective against the taller slower guys, but a penetrating point guard owns Kobe everytime they play. Even Troy Hudson used to drop 30 on the Lakers on the regular.
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