how good was elgin baylor?
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nomoreshaq
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 16, 2017 9:12 pm    Post subject: how good was elgin baylor?

he was way before my time so i know nothing about him - far less than i know about wilt, west, etc. anyone ever see him actually play?
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 16, 2017 11:30 pm    Post subject: Re: how good was elgin baylor?

nomoreshaq wrote:
he was way before my time so i know nothing about him - far less than i know about wilt, west, etc. anyone ever see him actually play?


I saw West and Wilt but was just too young to see Baylor. He was probably the sixties equivalent to Dr. J and Jordan... he was known for his athleticism and ability to hang in the air. At his peak, he averaged close to 40 a game. There are probably some good highlight films on Youtube.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 12:09 am    Post subject:

The question should be, who's over 60 around here?
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 1:59 am    Post subject:

He was Michael Jordan, Dr. J and Magic rolled into one before there was a Jordan, Dr. J or Magic.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZsNZMuNl6ko

Have fun! WAY ahead of his time.. you like Lonzo's full court outlet passes? Watch Baylor at 0:46 and with style, WAY back then... guy was a marvel, and way ahead of his time. Could also play all positions effectively from guard to forward to center he did it all and could do it all.

If ESPN and the hype machines like that was around back then he'd have been a mega star and much more revered than he is nowadays.

Elgin Baylor: Most Underrated Player in NBA History

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rjNS_oYE92E

Enjoy that as well!
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 3:43 am    Post subject:

MJST wrote:
He was Michael Jordan, Dr. J and Magic rolled into one before there was a Jordan, Dr. J or Magic.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZsNZMuNl6ko

Have fun! WAY ahead of his time.. you like Lonzo's full court outlet passes? Watch Baylor at 0:46 and with style, WAY back then... guy was a marvel, and way ahead of his time. Could also play all positions effectively from guard to forward to center he did it all and could do it all.

If ESPN and the hype machines like that was around back then he'd have been a mega star and much more revered than he is nowadays.

Elgin Baylor: Most Underrated Player in NBA History

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rjNS_oYE92E

Enjoy that as well!


Holy (bleep) that was illuminating. I had no idea he was such a brilliant passer. Wow.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 4:37 am    Post subject:

MJST wrote:
He was Michael Jordan, Dr. J and Magic rolled into one before there was a Jordan, Dr. J or Magic.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZsNZMuNl6ko

Have fun! WAY ahead of his time.. you like Lonzo's full court outlet passes? Watch Baylor at 0:46 and with style, WAY back then... guy was a marvel, and way ahead of his time. Could also play all positions effectively from guard to forward to center he did it all and could do it all.

If ESPN and the hype machines like that was around back then he'd have been a mega star and much more revered than he is nowadays.

Elgin Baylor: Most Underrated Player in NBA History

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rjNS_oYE92E

Enjoy that as well!

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Aeneas Hunter
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 6:14 am    Post subject:

High volume, mediocre efficiency shooter. He was one of the guys who posted some silly numbers in the early '60s, but he did it by taking huge numbers of shots. If you take 33 shots per game, you ought to be scoring some points. His shooting percentage was usually right around the league average, but some years it was below average.

What made him remarkable was his rebounding. While the rebounding numbers from the early '60s are silly, the fact remains that he was posting numbers that were lower, but not that much lower, than Wilt and Russell.

In general, his numbers declined after a knee injury a few years into his career. It's hard to know how much of the decline is due to the injury and how much is due to changes in the game. Most of the silly stats were gone by mid-decade. Baylor still had some good seasons at mid-career.

Overall, he was a pretty good player. What you think of him is going to be colored by what you think of the NBA in the early '60s. In my opinion, he tends to be greatly overrated. The obvious analogy for Baylor is Charles Barkley, in that they were both undersized forwards who rebounded like big men. Their styles were different, in that Baylor played in a run and gun era and was more of a jump shooter. But Barkley was better player at his peak and had a lot more good years.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 6:25 am    Post subject:

I saw him play at the very tail end of his career starting in the 69-70 season. That was his last good season (24 pts per game, 10.4 rebounds and 5.4 assists at 35 years old on bum knees). Great player on a great team. That was the year that Elgin's Lakers lost to the Knicks after Willis Reed's grand re-entrance in the finals.

After that year he had a final career-ending knee injury. I mainly thought of him as a great scorer and didn't realize how great of a passer he was. But hey, I was just a kid!

Here is a link to his bio: http://www.nba.com/history/players/baylor_bio.html
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 6:30 am    Post subject: Re: how good was elgin baylor?

nomoreshaq wrote:
he was way before my time so i know nothing about him - far less than i know about wilt, west, etc. anyone ever see him actually play?
. I was also too young to see him. I've always based my opinion on what Chickybaby said though the mid 80s. 'He was the most talented Laker ever.'
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 6:40 am    Post subject:

I was a little kid when Baylor stared for the Lakers. He was a great player and dazzled you with is scoring. Before he hurt his knee he was the best and should be mentioned up there with Kobe and Jordan, he was that good. I think he is as good a SF that has ever played. I am biased he was my favorite player and stayed that way until Magic came along.

He wasn't good he was great!!!!
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 6:44 am    Post subject:

By the time I started watching basketball in earnest, Elgin was a 'name' but not the player he was past. (FYI - I started watching the Lakers 70-71 season) I do remember him on the roster during the epic 71-72 team, but only at the beginning of the season. If memory serves me right, I believe he retired shortly after that season began. So I believe he got a championship ring, but he didn't contribute to the team winning that championship. Somebody can fact check my memory on that one.
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55
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 6:55 am    Post subject:

He was great, but let's not get carried away. He wasn't a Caruso.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 7:12 am    Post subject:

Tick wrote:
By the time I started watching basketball in earnest, Elgin was a 'name' but not the player he was past. (FYI - I started watching the Lakers 70-71 season) I do remember him on the roster during the epic 71-72 team, but only at the beginning of the season. If memory serves me right, I believe he retired shortly after that season began. So I believe he got a championship ring, but he didn't contribute to the team winning that championship. Somebody can fact check my memory on that one.


Elgin played the first nine games of the 71-72 season and then retired. The Lakers then went on their 33 game win streak. Jim McMillan was Baylor's replacement in the starting line-up.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 7:19 am    Post subject:

He was the most exciting and productive forward of his era. He could do anything he wanted to on the offensive end against most teams: pass, shoot, dribble, rebound, drive. The guy could rebound with centers and forwards of any size. He was not a great defender, was probably a bit lackadaisical guarding his man around the floor.

I think Elgin was the finest small forward of pre-1970 NBA, by a huge margin over anyone else. It was a different era of basketball.

First, pro players in the NBA didn't make enough money in the game to avoid having to make a living in the off-season doing something else, until that is, perhaps mid-to-late sixties, certainly post 1968-ish. Guys before then could not train and work on their game to the extent that they can today. By that time, the thirty-three year old Baylor had been reduced by injury and the effect of cumulative playing significantly. Medical help was comparatively primitive. His knee repair in '62 was done without benefit of MRI and without arthroscopic technique, so we night see that approach today as, well, butchery in a sense.

Second, the rules and the enforcement of them were entirely more restrictive to the ball-handler. It affects how players of that era could operate and to the naive eye, what they could be actually capable of doing with the rules of 1992, 2002, or today. Palming the ball on the dribble was illegal so the crossover dribble didn't exist. Running more than 1.5 steps to complete a dribble dribble was illegal and enforced, so getting airborne to showy dunks, hang-time feats, and skywalking was impossible. The jump-stop move of today - enabling a player to move a foot one more time after his perimitted dribble stop, was not permitted.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 7:33 am    Post subject:

Elgin Baylor would have been great in any era. Question is - how great? Unfortunately his best era was at a time when tv coverage was in the stone ages. We'll never get agreement on this. IMO - Not Magic/Jordan/Lebron/Kobe great, but on the flip side no way would I rank someone like Charles Barkley as good as Elgin Baylor.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 7:35 am    Post subject:

55 wrote:
He was great, but let's not get carried away. He wasn't a Caruso.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 11:36 am    Post subject:

VegasLakerFan wrote:
MJST wrote:
He was Michael Jordan, Dr. J and Magic rolled into one before there was a Jordan, Dr. J or Magic.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZsNZMuNl6ko

Have fun! WAY ahead of his time.. you like Lonzo's full court outlet passes? Watch Baylor at 0:46 and with style, WAY back then... guy was a marvel, and way ahead of his time. Could also play all positions effectively from guard to forward to center he did it all and could do it all.

If ESPN and the hype machines like that was around back then he'd have been a mega star and much more revered than he is nowadays.

Elgin Baylor: Most Underrated Player in NBA History

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rjNS_oYE92E

Enjoy that as well!


Holy (bleep) that was illuminating. I had no idea he was such a brilliant passer. Wow.


Glad you enjoyed it
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 11:46 am    Post subject:

Unfortunately there isn't much video of him playing, but if you ask all the greats that played in his era they all say that he was Dr. J before Dr. J. They say scoring-wise nobody could stop him and he was the first player to play above the rim.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 12:28 pm    Post subject:

MJST wrote:
He was Michael Jordan, Dr. J and Magic rolled into one before there was a Jordan, Dr. J or Magic.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZsNZMuNl6ko

Have fun! WAY ahead of his time.. you like Lonzo's full court outlet passes? Watch Baylor at 0:46 and with style, WAY back then... guy was a marvel, and way ahead of his time. Could also play all positions effectively from guard to forward to center he did it all and could do it all.

If ESPN and the hype machines like that was around back then he'd have been a mega star and much more revered than he is nowadays.

Elgin Baylor: Most Underrated Player in NBA History

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rjNS_oYE92E

Enjoy that as well!


Those links were absolute treats! Thanks for posting...
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 12:39 pm    Post subject:

His CAREER averages are 27/13/4.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 1:09 pm    Post subject:

TooMuchMajicBuss wrote:
Elgin Baylor would have been great in any era. Question is - how great? Unfortunately his best era was at a time when tv coverage was in the stone ages. We'll never get agreement on this. IMO - Not Magic/Jordan/Lebron/Kobe great, but on the flip side no way would I rank someone like Charles Barkley as good as Elgin Baylor.


True. It all depends on how you feel about players from the '60s, especially the guys who posted silly numbers in the early '60s. Some of you are going to rate Baylor a lot higher than I do, and I can't say that you're wrong. I just have a hard time reconciling all of the fawning comments about Baylor from old timers with the fact that he was a 43% career shooter in an era with no three pointers. His career TS% was .494. Yet the old timers tell us that he was unstoppable.

Anyway, ESPN ranked Baylor at 24 and Barkley at 18. That sounds about right to me. I know some people would flip them, but that's the fun part of these discussions, right?
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 2:54 pm    Post subject: Re: how good was elgin baylor?

nomoreshaq wrote:
he was way before my time so i know nothing about him - far less than i know about wilt, west, etc. anyone ever see him actually play?


I had never thought I'd see this thread. It's a real good question. I read a couple of posters, and I'm with the group who came on board with our Lakers just as Elgin retired.

Wow, after all those playing years, and getting whipped by the Celtics, the Lakers finally win a championship the year he retired.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 4:46 pm    Post subject:

Jerry West went on record many times that he felt that Elgin Baylor was the finest corner man the game had seen, but changed his tune once Michael Jordan came along.

Bill Russell and John Havlicek chimed in similarly, in the book "The Perfect Team" except with regard to Larry Bird and Elgin.

I tend to trust those three guys' take on comparative talent. I think that LeBron, Kobe, Bird and MJ were each better small forwards overall than Elgin, but that's damned nice company to be in. Elgin didn't play like Charles Barkey at all, as Elgin went past people inside and didn't bang-bump as a post player at all.

"I've never seen a better player than the young Elgin Baylor."
Bill Russell, 2006, from The Perfect Team (DOUBLEDAY)
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 18, 2017 12:10 am    Post subject:

70sdude wrote:
He was the most exciting and productive forward of his era. He could do anything he wanted to on the offensive end against most teams: pass, shoot, dribble, rebound, drive. The guy could rebound with centers and forwards of any size. He was not a great defender, was probably a bit lackadaisical guarding his man around the floor.

I think Elgin was the finest small forward of pre-1970 NBA, by a huge margin over anyone else. It was a different era of basketball.

First, pro players in the NBA didn't make enough money in the game to avoid having to make a living in the off-season doing something else, until that is, perhaps mid-to-late sixties, certainly post 1968-ish. Guys before then could not train and work on their game to the extent that they can today. By that time, the thirty-three year old Baylor had been reduced by injury and the effect of cumulative playing significantly. Medical help was comparatively primitive. His knee repair in '62 was done without benefit of MRI and without arthroscopic technique, so we night see that approach today as, well, butchery in a sense.

Second, the rules and the enforcement of them were entirely more restrictive to the ball-handler. It affects how players of that era could operate and to the naive eye, what they could be actually capable of doing with the rules of 1992, 2002, or today. Palming the ball on the dribble was illegal so the crossover dribble didn't exist. Running more than 1.5 steps to complete a dribble dribble was illegal and enforced, so getting airborne to showy dunks, hang-time feats, and skywalking was impossible. The jump-stop move of today - enabling a player to move a foot one more time after his perimitted dribble stop, was not permitted.


This just goes to show when people try to talk down about the 'old timers' and what they 'wouldn't be able to do' in today's era.

Put Westbrook in that era and that era's rules and he'll never make it past half court without it being a turnover/violation

Allow a prime Elgin Baylor 3.5 steps before it's a travel, a continuous continued dribble shuffle and crossovers, jumpstops, etc that are allowed in today's game and watch what he'd do in today's era
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 18, 2017 1:10 am    Post subject:

wrong thread
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Last edited by MJST on Tue Jul 18, 2017 1:50 am; edited 1 time in total
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