Flashback: 97 draft( I was actually only five years old at the time, so it's not like I actually watched the draft per say) coming off the Shawn Bradley epic failure and the A.I/Stackhouse thing butting heads, the Sixers were looking for a complimentary player to add to their core. Enter in Larry Hughes, passed on was Dirk Nowitski and Paul Pierce.
Eventually, after a few years Hughes was deemed ineffective. A solid defensive wing who could be a non option, but really his need for the rock in his hands conflicted with Allen Iverson. And we believed(or had to believe) that Hughes could do more. Generally accepted as a bust, much in the way of John Salmons. I believe we either traded him or signed elsewhere. Hughes, like Salmons would go on to have a breakout year followed by coming back down to earth. Leading people to say "SEE!" but in the end, their career numbers far outlasted that one incredible season.
So why do I bring up Larry Hughes and his generally ineffective time in Philadelphia and in general as a solid sparkplug wing? Everyone here knows the answer: We drafted the same guy virtually in 2004 and he's treated like he's "the next Scottie Pippen".
Both were mediocre free throw shooters, both had non existent outside games and both were slightly above average in AST/T.O Ratio. Both frankly were roleplayers in the NBA. But I don't remember Hughes getting all the fanfare that our current #9 gets. Is it because it's cute to stick for the beaten dog when he's down?
Some will point out that Iguodala edges out Hughes in OWS and WS in general, to this I don't understand since their basic statistics are more or less the same, with the exception of Iggy shooting 5% better. I'll be honest and say I don't have too many memories of Hughes, but was he the athlete Iguodala is? Iguodala's fast break transition game, one of the things I'll always contend is the few things he does at an ELITE and transcendent level.
Let me be clear: I have nothing against our rebounding/defensive small forward. I have everything against his non-efficient, non-team oriented, mediocre overall isolation game that's on par with Louis Williams. I hate his shot selection(or lack of it), I hate his lack of a dribble, post-up game, etc. If not for the fast break, what would Iguodala be in the National Basketball Association?
To me Iguodala has never developed as a wing man, in the Pistons series, his two main problems were an inability to shoot over the top of the defense, or to create space. He still has troubles doing that, and as a catch and shoot guy, Derek notes that he's above average. But that's just it: He's above average.
That's not good enough to win, and it certainly doesn't justify what he brings to the table. We play Hawes, Lou, Thad 60 MPG combined on a daily basis. Yes, Iguodala's a top flight defender/rebounder. I'm not convinced we can't get by with a solid spark plug defensive forward we don't need the BEST defender.
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