Oscar Robertson was one of the greatest players of all time. He was a Great scorer, great passer, smart, and quick. But what if I told you, he is overrated? Would you believe me? Today I will try to convince you that Oscar Robertson is overrated. Before you leave this blog post, please read try to read it with an open mind. Remember, I'm not taking anything anyway from Oscar. I put him in my top ten players of all time, but the fact that people think he is comparable to Jordan and other greats is ridiculous. I will contain two points about why I think he is overrated. After you read this article, feel free to comment and follow me on twitter @CJ_H_12. (Special thanks to Bill Simmons and his book The Book of Basketball).
- Talent Level of the Early 1960's and The slower game today: Gene Shue (Good point Guard), Jerry West (Great), Cooz (Great), and K.C. (good). That's a total of 3 teams with good-great point guards.
Today: Rose (Great), CP3 (Great), Rondo (Great), DWill (Good), Steph Curry (Good becoming Great), Rubio (good), Nash (good), TP9 (Good), Westbrook (in between good and great), and Lawson (Good). That's a total of 10 different teams with good-great point guards.
Is Oscar better than all of these point guards? Yes. Could he handle all of them in one season? Most likely. Could he average a triple double against these much more athletic players? No. The players today are much too fast and strong. I predict his stats would be something like this: 25 PPG, 9 APG, and 7 RPG. Still great stats, but no triple double. The game today is not nearly as fast as it was back then so there is less shots taken today (8, 619 FGA in 1962 and 6, 683 FGA in 2008). Jason Kidd (6-4 205 LBS in 2007) and Oscar (6-5 205 LBS on average of his career) have a lot alike. Kidd is just as quick and strong as Oscar so rebounding would be a lot alike. Kidd averaged around 7-8 RPG in his prime. I believe this would be around the same for Oscar. Also in 1962 there were a total of 5,713 rebounds in the season. In 2008 there were 3,442 total rebounds. See the difference? Assists go right back to the FGA in the season. Oscar would not have as many chances to hand out assists to teammates with the tempo slowed down.
- His triple double is overrated: This point can be explained with one graph:
YEAR G FGA REB FG% PPG
1961-62 80 8,619 5,713 42.6 118.8
1965-66 80 8,195 5,458 43.3 115.5
1969-70 82 8,147 4,336 46.0 116.7
1973-74 82 7,697 3,955 45.9 105.7
1977-78 82 7,615 3,863 46.9 108.5
1981-82 82 7,236 3,565 49.1 108.6
1985-86 82 7,268 3,572 48.7 110.2
1989-90 82 7,146 3,538 47.6 107.0
1993-94 82 6,924 3,526 46.6 101.5
1997-98 82 6,536 3,407 45.0 95.6
2003-04 82 6,545 3,461 43.9 93.4
2007-08 82 6,683 3,442 45.7 99.9
With the game sped up so much, there was more FGA which caused more REB, AST, and a higher PPG. Therefore the triple double was overrated. I'm not taking away anything from Oscar in this post, but I am saying he is slightly overrated.
Is Oscar Robertson overrated? Yes.