Ben Simmons, Dwight, Paul West discussed on The Bill Simmons Podcast
Part of it is that the legacy, right? We're not currently we're not thinking of centers. Right. And so we're not thinking of any, like, who's the best center of this error? Does it even matter? Well, they might have been the best center of his era. Now centers are, I think it's a better, deeper position than maybe it was during when Dwight was there. He was kind of he represented like the last old school center. And we were moving to his new world. The real last old school center Shaq was always dumping on Dwight. But that's honestly that's why Dwight didn't make it. I think people just don't like them. You know, and this is we're so and I and house did a basketball book a basketball podcast about it. Last year, about this very point, his career was I think significantly better than people realized, but people didn't like them. And he was a jackass, and he did stuff like the Superman thing. And, you know, in the finals, against the Lakers where they had real chances to take control of that series and he couldn't make a free throw and he was just a really frustrating query. He felt like the kind of guy that had the world that his fingertips and a lot like how we feel about somebody like Ben Simmons now. But it's like, get your shit together, dude. You're one of the 6 best athletes in the league. So Ben, if we transition a little bit. So you sent me that awesome clip of I don't know if I can even call it a clip when it's 40 minutes of news reports from LA, local TV sports when the Lakers Paul west had. And, you know, all the speculation at the time was the Magic Johnson, go upstairs and have Paul west had fired. And I remember that's my second or third, really third year really being in the NBA fan. My invade fandom basically started with magic and the Lakers and the 1980 playoffs. And from then I just jumped all in and manages my favorite player ever. And all of a sudden he's vilified, right? He's the bad guy. He got booed that first game after west had got fired. And it was so hard to see my favorite player turn into the villain. And I was thinking one of the things that's hurting Ben Simmons is, is anyone really heartbroken by this? You know, did he have like this hardcore fan base anywhere that's like it feels disappointed in him? That's part of the problem. Like, nobody's heartbroken over this. You know, I get the sense you've got probably more Philly fans than I do in your friendship circle that they're just kind of just get rid of them. You know? There's no, there's no reckoning. There's no, you know, heart rending. No, this guy doesn't want to be here. Let's get rid of him. Whereas for me, it was so hard to see Magic Johnson vilified and he got over really quick and they won the championship and then they took off. But Ben Simmons doesn't have that. And I Yeah, he entered the fuck this guy zone, which is a really dangerous place to be very clear. The difference is, you know, magic, his rookie year, they won the title and he played one of the most legendary games of all time. And for that, it's like at least he had a pedigree and a track record whereas Ben Simmons is track record year after year has been but the reason I set that to you, there's this dude. So if people want to watch this, there's this YouTube guy. His name is non player zealot four. That's his YouTube handle. And he just basically has every single Laker clip from the 80s and 90s and 2000s. You would ever want to find and all the Chick Hearn calls, which are great. I actually watched the games game four in 1987 finals, which I went to the sky. I'd never heard the Chick Hearn call. It's great. It's really like, it's so, so good, but you heard it in the they always play the chick hurn call like on the MBA commercials or whatever. Yeah, but never like the whole actual play by play. Right. So this guy put together this 40 minute Montage of and it's I'm telling you when Brian Curtis sees this, he might have to, he might need medical attention. It's got Fred Rogan. The hill of course, of course Jim. Tim hell. And Bill just has an aged. Right. He's the exact same from 1981. And, you know, when you hear Jerry busts, answering one of the questions in San Roy, that's Roy firestone, right? And also there's one thing where they toss back to the anchors and CBS and Jim hill's there. And you hear Connie Chung in there, saying, can I say hi to magic? Connie Chung, who went on to be a national network anchor? Well, you looked at the best one. Roy firestone. Rocky rocky star, student a hand. You know, for the record movies. Yeah. At best times of Richmond high. Right. All those guys. But it was actually really good journalism. You know, watching it as a drilling professional. That's when local TV sports, you know, they had, first of all, they had multiple guys. Like you see guys in the studio throwing out to their reporters, you know, now you've got one person in sports staffs and local news. And I give credit to a lot of those guys because they've done some reporting. You know, you hear them giving informed opinions. And there was so much skepticism about what the Lakers were sending out that, oh, we'd already made the decision and we were gonna fire west head later and then magic just happened to speak out, you.