Blogtable: Your High-Energy Star

Each week, we’ll ask our stable of scribes across the globe to weigh in on the three most important NBA topics of the day — and then give you a chance to step on the scale, too, in the comments below.

Future pick: CHI or CLE | High-energy stud | DMC an All-Star?

Joakim Noah (Layne Murdoch Jr./NBAE)

Joakim Noah (Layne Murdoch Jr./NBAE)

Pick me a high-energy, give-it-his-all player you’d want on your team.

Steve Aschburner, NBA.comAnthony Davis. Since you didn’t exclude No. 1 picks, I’m taking the 20-year-old. He picks up a can of Red Bull, the can gets a buzz. He’s scoring (19.1 ppg) and shooting (.523 FG%), he’s rebounding (10.2 rpg) and defending (3.2 bpg). He hasn’t been an All-Star — yet — so I figure he’s eligible.

Fran Blinebury, You’re probably looking for me to name a scrappy, ankle-biting guard who lives for floor burns and turnovers. But I’ll pick LeBron James.  I don’t think he takes games or possessions off.

Jeff Caplan, NBA.comJoakim Noah. Simple, right?

Amir Johnson (Layne Murdoch/NBAE)

Amir Johnson (Layne Murdoch/NBAE)

Scott Howard-Cooper, Not sure about this one. LeBron James plays with a lot of energy and tries hard, so I’ll take him. But something tells me you’re looking for someone who might not quite have superstar skills. In that case: Denver’s Kenneth Faried. He generates most of his own offense and impacts games on defense and the boards through nonstop energy. He is going to have a long career because he refuses to get outworked.

John Schuhmann, NBA.comAmir Johnson. This is the fourth straight season that the Raptors have been much better both offensively and defensively with Johnson on the floor than with him on the bench. That’s not a coincidence and it’s not because he plays most of his minutes with other starters, because none of Toronto’s other starters have had nearly the same impact on the team’s numbers. Johnson is long, active and durable. He’s smart, knows his role on the floor, sets good screens, and just makes things easier for his teammates.

Sekou Smith, NBA.comTony Allen has always been one of my favorite players in terms of his raw energy and all-out effort, particularly on the defensive end. He’s the first guy that comes to mind. But I’ve been impressed with DeMarre Carroll‘s high-motor game this season with the Atlanta Hawks. I watched Carroll flat-out harass Kobe Bryant one night last month. He pestered Kobe in ways that few players in this league have attempted to over the years, showing no reverence for Kobe or any insecurities about putting forth that sort of effort against one of the game’s all-time greats. It wasn’t just Kobe and the bright lights, though. He does that all the time, regardless of the opponent. Carroll seems like one of those guys you see at the gym or at a neighborhood court who plays like his hair is on fire all the time and you can’t figure out why. It’s just the way he’s wired. He plays guts out all the time and that’s definitely the kind of guy I want on my team.

Lang Whitaker, All Ball blog: This kind of goes to the Chicago/Cleveland question, but I’d take Joakim Noah in a heartbeat. He’s never been the most skilled player on any team he’s been on, but he’s always been the grittiest, toughest guy. His shooting form looks like someone tied his arms together, and aesthetically he may not always be pleasing to the eye, but after watching him beat Brooklyn in last year’s playoffs while basically playing on one foot, Noah forever earned my respect.

XiBin Yang, NBA China: Omer Asik is my pick. He’s not a bad locker room guy: he just wants more minutes to play, and a suitable role to fit into. He showed us that how productive he could be, if he got enough minutes.  It’s hard to believe that the Rockets could have made the playoffs without him in the last season. OK, maybe he’s just not as good as Dwight. Well, no matter where he goes next season, it will be fun to see this tough Turkish center play against Howard.

Davide Chinellato, NBA Italia: The Pacers’ Lance Stephenson is my favorite. He does a bit of everything and he has learned how to do it all at an All-Star level. He always gives it his all, and shines as an example of hard work for his teammates. Plus, he’s playing like an All-Star right now, so picking him is really easy.

Adriano Albuquerque, NBA Brasil: Ginobili Ginobili Ginobili. Look, I can’t front, I’m a Manu-fanatic. He not only is high-energy and give-it-his-all, he also can actually play and has championship pedigreé. It’s a no-brainer.


  1. zgillet says:

    Honorable Mentions:
    Andre Iguodala
    Reggie Evans
    DeAndre Jordan
    Russel Westbrook
    Rajon Rondo
    Gerald Green (IMO)

  2. anyway says:

    Judd Buschler, no doubt

  3. Brooklynde says:

    Kenneth Faried hands down, high energy player.

  4. Price25 says:

    Jonas Valanciunas… Goes after every rebound on both sides, i seen him fist pump after winning the opening tip. If thats not energy from start to finish I dont know what is.

  5. wooderson says:

    draymond green

  6. Mac says:

    Happy to see a guy like Amir Johnson get recognized, not the most well known guy, but gives his heart and soul every night out, really helps Toronto

  7. matt says:

    Carroll is by defintion an energy spark, which Jazz tragically lost off bench! Now Alec Burks has taken over with some nights Evans, but nothing near what we got in Carroll “The Junkyard Dog”!!!

  8. J says:

    Lebron James. Der.

  9. Rowin19 says:

    Ivan Johnson ( China league and ex-Hawks ) !

  10. lapluis says:

    rusellllll westbrook the best hard worker player, leaves his heart on the court

  11. Graham says:

    Very glad James gets mentioned. He might be the best player in the world, but how much of that is down to his work ethic? He always gets back first, leads the breaks or beats the defense down to finish off and plays big minutes. Easy to do that playing 10-12 MPG, but LBJ does it better than anyone playing 35MPG as his team’s primary offensive weapon and defensive stopper.

  12. chris says:

    the tonado or beast JOAKIM NOAH is the best!!!

  13. coolitdude says:

    wow there are many Varejao mentions here ya… thumbs up. Noah is every coaches dream man too, KG still has it but ageing,
    Kevin Love not mentioned?? he doesnt show it in his face but he wont lose out to Noah on the offensive boards…. now that’s Hustle..

  14. wak9 says:

    now a days I’d have to say Anderson V.

    of all time Dan Marjlie

  15. Vic says:

    Definitely Anderson Varejao. I know someone who was watching NBA when Chamberlin was playing and he says nobody since he has been watching plays with the heart and energy of Varejao.

  16. nic says:

    Can’t believe that Russell Westbrook didn’t get a mention. Ginobli gives his all but hasn’t had energy for the last decade.

  17. TheTruth34 says:

    Patrick Beverley is the best hustle player in the league.

  18. Xenon Torantar says:

    I think PJ Tucker deserves more respect in this category. He’s a great defender who can hold his own against the premier scorers in the league. For example, in a win over the Rockets, he held James Harden, the guy who just went for 38 tonight, to 3-14 from the field. He always fights for loose balls and rebounds, having 10 tonight against the T-Wolves and we know the rebounding juggernauts they have in Kevin Love and Pekovic. Oh, and he’s only 6 ft 5.

  19. #celticfan says:

    gerald wallace? a pretty give it all player who is quite underated

  20. Tim Johnson says:

    you guys might not have heard of him but PJ Tucker of the phoenix suns is a ridiculous hustle player, i have yet to watch a suns game this season where he didnt come up with a clutch hustle offensive rebound, the dude is only 6’5″

  21. Tre says:

    Anderson Varejao, hands down, no question.

    Anybody who has watched the Cavaliers as long as Andy has been there, will realize the heart and hustle he has. You don’t average 15 boards and lead the league in offensive rebounds just by standing there. The guy just doesn’t stop moving.

  22. i wil say there are at lest 6 of the guys u mentioned and Russell Westbrook

  23. Ryan says:

    Jordan Hill hands down…

  24. SunsNeedToPlayThreePointGuardsInsteadOfTwo says:

    Lou “Who’s THAT Guy” Amundson before he was traded by the Suns.

  25. Truth says:

    Blake Griffin

  26. Iamaliar says:

    Josh Smith aka J-Smoov, for sure. He’s a team player, doesn’t take his place in the league for granted, never does anything he shouldn’t attempt, always plays to his strengths, never complains, and always gives it his all! (Oops, I forgot there wasn’t a sarcastic font on here)

  27. Scisca says:

    Nate Robinson is the No 1 energy guy in NBA. No point arguing about it.

    • Imaliar says:

      Josh Smith aka J-Smoov, for sure. He’s a team player, doesn’t take his place in the league for granted, never does anything he shouldn’t attempt, always plays to his strengths, never complains, and always gives it his all! (Oops, I forgot there wasn’t a sarcastic font on here)

    • Mr.Mike says:

      Gotta agree, I doubt Nate even needs sleep

  28. ballerpr says:

    no varejao?

  29. freal says:

    Tony Parker
    Marcin Gortat
    and also I think everyone overlooked Tyler Hansbrough aka psycho T.

    It’s ironic how I picked Birdman and Psycho T out of the bunch knowing their history in last year’s ECF.

    And for those saying Kevin Garnett…yeh maybe from 2 years ago, but KG is so washed up now it hurts to watch him knowing the player he used to be.

  30. kleptodathief says:

    andrea bargnani all dem pasta lolz

  31. Mike says:

    Ginobili is the obvious choice. Nobody has left more blood, sweat and tears on the courts of the NBA than him.

  32. Art says:

    I’m afraid Steve Aschbrunner & Fran Blinebury didn’t understand the question. Bring stats or name MVP is so funny.

    Many guys deserved to be named but one who can inspire the whole team is Noah.

    • Mike says:

      You’re saying that Anthony Davis and LBJ aren’t high-energy, give-it-all players? And you wouldn’t want them on your team?

  33. Swaggy P says:

    ’nuff said!

  34. Michael says:

    Andrew Bogut, Kawhi Leonard.

    Noah shoots like he’s throwing a television out a window.

  35. Adam says:

    Anderson Varejao

  36. Maorinash says:

    My high energy team: Keep in mind I am a SUNS fan lol.
    PG: Goran Dragic
    SG: Iman Shumpert
    SF: P.J Tucker
    PF: Kenneth Faried
    C: Joakim Noah

  37. Jackson says:

    I have to go with JaVale McGee. He may make some odd decisions on court, but he’s a hustler and gives his all every time he is on the court.

  38. Ambu says:

    For me ITS the Birdman!! He always challenge most attempts given to him and doesn’t care even if he got posterized!! Always battling the loose balls… very active in Pick and Roll.. There’s no doubt The birdman is the lucky charm of miami heat!!

  39. Tuvshoo says:

    What About KEVIN GARNETT?

  40. jfack says:

    nate robinson.
    kenneth farried.
    also demarre carrol! i think is a very high energy guy. i loved when he played in utah. if he had more playing time in utah last year they would have made the playoffs because he brought so much energy. idk if hes like that now in atlanta, ive yet to see atlanta play this year.

  41. okc2014 says:

    Russell Westbrook and my back-up is Serge Ibaka (AHHHHHHHHHH!)

  42. Keanu says:

    Not surprised you chose Kenneth faried. The manimal is a beast!!!!

  43. TDR says:

    Give me D.Wade.

    Oh wait, this is high energy, I though it was high “beneficiary” guy, as one who receives more benefits and help from the officials than other players.

  44. MSF10710 says:

    Mike Conley

  45. Mike says:

    hands down rondo….
    if you need proof… remember sliding on the floor for the possesion over jason williams or better yet his elbow injury and he played through it and roasted or the fact he has how many triple doubles…..

  46. Ed says:

    I’ve never in my life seen an athlete give everything he has 100% of the time like Anderson Varejao. Non stop hustle and work.