Is There A Current NBA Center Who Could Take On Wilt Chamberlain?

Is There A Current NBA Center Who Could Take On Wilt Chamberlain?

Though that view appears to be in the vast minority these days, I humbly believe that Wilt Chamberlain was the greatest basketball player to ever step onto the court.

The Big Dipper was an NBA player who won two championship rings, was inducted into the Hall of Fame, and was named league MVP four times, regardless of where you place him in the pantheon.

Wilt had game.

The argument against his greatness is frequently made that he played in a different era when defense was nonexistent and that this allowed him to take advantage of smaller players who couldn’t contain a seven-footer. I’ve discussed my thoughts on each of those assertions.

However, does it not also follow that he would struggle in the modern game if he wasn’t really all that special? That would not be the case, in my opinion.

Actually, I’ve been wondering lately if there’s even a single NBA center that could contain Chamberlain these days.

A Hall of Famer, Wilt Chamberlain is ranked among the top 10 players of all time by the majority of experts. Therefore, I believe it would be pointless to compare him to players who are in the middle of the pack in the current game. As a result, I will only be examining the top five centers that are currently operational.

Evaluating Chamberlain fairly against contemporary players is one of the conceits I’ve been forced to make, since many of the stats that contemporary players amass were not monitored in the 1960s. In an effort to create parity, I have limited my comparisons to the three main elements that have impacted us from the start: points, assists, and rebounds, which add up to PAR.

I think this is the most equitable approach, even though it is an imperfect means of comparing players.

I think this is the most equitable approach, even though it is an imperfect means of comparing players.

Teams in the NBA took 101.5 shots per game on average during Chamberlain’s 14-year career; in the last 14 years, teams have taken 80.9 shots per game. In other words, the number of points (114.1 then, 97.4 now) and rebounds (63.2 then, 41.9 now) per game are lower. But shooting percentages are better now than they were when Wilt was around—.451 compared to.438 in his day. Therefore, even though players are shooting less, assists have decreased slightly—from 23.2 to 21.5 per game at that time.

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