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Old 01-09-2014, 11:46 AM   #40
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Default Re: Wilt Chamberlain vs Bill Russell 1968 EDF stats

Originally Posted by LAZERUSS
I look at Wilt's teammates perfomances in their regular seasons, and then in their post-seasons. And in nearly every post-season, they declined, and quite often, dramatically. And if anything, Chamberlain shot LESS in his post-season play, which explains his scoring "decline" in the playoffs, as well.

Again, a great example, the 65-66 Sixers. In the regular season, Wilt's teammates collectively shot .416 from the field (Wilt was at .540.) In the EDF's against Boston...they collectively shot .352 (Wilt was at .509.)

Furthermore, during their regular season H2H's with Boston, the Sixers went 6-3. And in those nine games, Chamberlain averaged 28.3 ppg, 30.7 rpg, and shot an est. .525 from the floor. In the EDF's, Chamberlain put up a 28.0 ppg, 30.2 rpg, and .509 series. Wilt played almost exactly the same, and yet the results were far different.

Of course, the 65-66 Sixers were a young, up-and-coming team, and they exploded behind Wilt in 66-67. Early in the season they annihilated Boston by a 138-96 margin, and never looked back. At one point they were 46-4, and then coasted down the stretch.

True, Chamberlain shot less, and passed more, but in the 65-66 season, he averaged 5.2 apg with his 33.5 ppg. In 66-67 he averaged 7.8 apg to go along with his 24.1 ppg. But he still lit up any center any time he wanted to in 66-67, and even Rick Barry, who led the league at 35.6 ppg remarked that the only reason he (Barry) won the scoring title, was because Chamberlain didn't care about winning it.

The reality was, Chamberlain did whatever was asked of him his entire career. The Wilt-bashers love to point out his 50 ppg season as an example of a "selfish" Wilt, but the fact was, it was Wilt's COACH who asked Chamberlain to score that much. Why? Because in the 60-61 playoffs, while Wilt scored 37 ppg, his teammates collectively shot .332 from the field (and Wilt's two HOF teammates that year, Arizin and Gola, shot .325 and .205 respectively in that series.) McGuire took one look at that old and crappy Warrior roster, and decided the only hope that they had, was for Chamberlain to shoot 40 times per game. And it worked. Wilt single-handedly carried that team to a 49-31 record, then thru the first round of the playoffs, and then to a game seven, two point loss against a HOF-laden 60-20 Celtic team.

Hannum asked Wilt to be a scorer, rebounder, and defensive anchor in 63-64, and the result was Chamberlain single-handedly took a rag-tag roster that had gone 31-49 the year before (and with Wilt having a mind-boggling Win-Share of 20.9 BTW..or a 70% share of the wins) to a 48-32 record. Then, in the first round of the playoffs, and against a Hawk team that was markedly better, players 2-6, Wilt put up a 39-23 .559 seven game series to get them into the Finals. That they lost the last two games of that series in the waning seconds, in a 4-1 series loss, against a Celtic team with EIGHT HOFers, was just a mind-numbing accomplishment. Again, a one-man wrecking crew. And he HAD to play that way.

And in that 66-67 season, while Wilt dramatically cut back his scoring and shooting (and still put up 24.1 ppg on an eye-popping .683 FG%), he would completely take over at the offensive end almost at will. I have mentioned the first Thurmond encounter. Wilt had been facilitating the offense in the first half, and had only scored six points. Hannum felt that the only way Philly could win that game, was for Wilt to take over at the offensive end. He had his teammates feed him the ball, and Chamberlain hung 24 points on Nate in the second half (and outscored him for the game, 30-13.)

And against Russell in the clinching game five win in the EDF's that year, Wilt kept Philly in the game in the first half, with 22 points, en route to a 29 point game, in a blowout win. Clearly, Chamberlain could have been hanging 40+ point games on both Russell and Nate had he been inclined. BUT, for the first time in his career, it wasn't necessary. He finally had teammates that weren't get trashed by their opponents.

And that philosophy worked in 67-68, too. It would have been an easy repeat had the Sixers remained healthy.

Wilt's assists numbers dropped from 5.2 apg in the 65-66 regular season to 3.0 apg in the '66 EDF. That's 4.4 LESS POINTS that he contributed to his teammates.

And no he didn't play nearly as good as in the regular season.

Look at how he did the first four games of the series... 23.5 ppg on 48.7% shooting. If he didn't explode for 46 points in Game 5 to improve his stats, he would be harshly criticized for this series.

Originally Posted by Psileas
In 1965 at least, there is a huge experience gap between Wilt's and Russell's teams. Actually, there had always been an experience gap between Wilt's and Russell's teams, but in 1965, it is at an all-time high among the times Wilt has a team with talent anywhere near Russell's.
And no, Wilt's 1968 playoff roster, without Billy C. and with pretty much any other significant player injured, isn't stronger than Russell's, not even close. You'd have a point if we only referred to regular season, but we obviously don't.

Sure but my point is when discussing Wilt vs. Russell from '65 to '69 you can't really use the teammate card. Wilt's teams were good enough to win.

Originally Posted by Helix
LOL, this post just cracks me up. You're a Russell worshiper who lays the Boston dynasty at the feet of Russell. You seem to forget about a certain individual named Red Auerbach. I don't disagree with the notion that there would have been no Boston dynasty without Russell, but neither would there have been without Auerbach. Of course I understand that Auerbach has to be minimized to build Russell up to make him appear greater than Chamberlain. And some people that don't know any better fall for it. Well, some of us know better. The real key to the Boston dynasty was the "marriage" of Auerbach and Russell.

As for the bolded say that from 65-69 Wilt had rosters just as good if not better than Russell. That's partially true. But you seem to forget about DEPTH. Wilt's rosters simply didn't have the depth that Russell's did, and that can be attributed to Auerbach, who always saw to it that Russell had what he needed. The fact is though, in comparing Boston and Philly over those five years, it's more than a matter of personnel. There are two other key elements in the comparison. First is injuries, and second is coaching. In knowing the facts of 68, had Philly been healthy, there's no question they would have beaten Boston. And in 69 had the lakers had a competent coach, they more than likely would have won. Boston was clearly superior in 65 and 66.....they still had Auerbach and Philly had Schayes. And I might just say 66 nobody was beating Boston due to Auerbach's retirement.

I've observed these Chamberlain/Russell debates for 50 years. It always amazes me how Russell supporters always fall back on the always ends up Russell's eleven rings against Chamberlain's individual dominance. In doing that they're pulling Auerbach into the debate, yet they refuse to acknowledge him. The truth is, the debates are rarely Chamberlain vs. Russell, they're Chamberlain vs. Russell and Auerbach.

You said.....It's a fact that those stacked Celtics rosters laden with HOFers got nowhere before he came or after he left. That's a very superficial statement, so answer me this....just "where" would Russell have been without those stacked Celtic rosters and without Auerbach? I had one clown insist that Russell would have had the same success no matter what team he had gone to. Hehe, now THAT's ludicrous.

Players are out on the floor winning games. Auerbach obviously did a lot for the Celtics including the front office pulls but Red is also on record saying he could never coach a primadonna like Wilt.

Unfortunately I can't answer your last question (I can only guess...) but given that Russell never lost as the favorite I have to think he'd win at least 5 titles with Wilt's rosters. '67, '69, '70, '72, and '73...

People also underrate the fact that Russell won in '68 and '69 while coaching his teams. And that he was an underdog in both years especially in '69.
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