I think people get a little offended too often on this topic. Just as a reference Michael Jordan scored 37 ppg in his third year at 23 years old. He never reached that number again. That doesn't mean that he never got better as a basketball player, but he just wasn't able to put up those types of stats again. I think as an individual player, he peaked in 1990, the year they lost to the Pistons in game 7. That was when he was the most complete and total player that I had ever seen. The funny thing is, the years that he actually won his rings, he was in the decline phase. His stats went down year after year, but the team got better.
You have to remember, when we are talking about prime and peak, we are talking about individual achievements. When we are talking about winning, we are talking about team achievements. The 2 don't always coincide.
KAJ is another one. He won almost all his titles in his decline period. Wilt Chamberlain as well. He never was able to match his 50/26 season when he was 25 years old.
SMH Y THE FCUK DO PEOPLE KEEP SAYING MJ WAS DECLINING STARTING IN 91???? YYYYYYYYYYYYYYY??? I DONT SEE IT....IS IT BECAUSE HE WASNT DOING DUNK CONTESTS ANYMORE??? LIKE PEOPLE CHILL THE FCUK OUT WITH THIS WHOLE NOTION THAT MJ WAS DECLINING IN 91...I SAY HE STARTED SHOWING DECLINE DURING THE SECOND THREE PEAT.....Y????? REGGIE MILLER WAS GIVING MJ THE BUSINESS DURING THOSE YEARS AND WE ALL KNOW PRIME MJ WOULD HAVE MADE REGGIE MILLER HIS LIL SISSY. ITS A BIG DIFFERENCE BETWEEN DECLININ AND CHANGING YOUR GAME TO BETER SUIT THE TEAM....YALL MEAN TO TELL ME MJ WAS DECLINING IN HIS 8TH FCUKING YEAR IN THE LEAGUE????? CMON YALL DAMN!!!!!!! IM SO SICK OF HEARIN THAT SHIT
I didn't say it's the norm. I said the stats he accumulates makes it appear like his impact is greater than it really is. I stand by that 100%.
Look, the dude is obviously a top 5 player in the NBA no matter which way you slice it. I'm just saying his stats look a little more impressive than what he actually does. I just used last night's game as an example of how stats alone can be deceptive.
Durant is definitely in his prime right now. Most stars are in their prime by year 6, Lebron for example had his best complete season to date in year 6 at Durant's age (though I expect his current season to surpass '09 when it's over).
Doesn't mean he's peaked, but he's definitely in his prime.