By Sekou Smith, NBA.com
HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS — A quick list of the NBA’s best and most complete players includes names like LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Kobe Bryant, Chris Paul and Tim Duncan, just to name a few, at the very top.
The best of the very best.
So where does that leave guys like James Harden, Paul George, Dwight Howard, Kevin Love and Steph Curry, just to name a few, who are stuck in that superstar middle ground. They look like franchise players and get paid like franchise players but in the eyes of some, namely their predecessors who now serve as pundits, aren’t quite on that level, just yet or anymore.
The franchise player debate (is it just someone whose mastered a certain part of the game or someone who has mastered many?) has gone on forever and will continue to do so. We weigh in on Episode 154 of the Hang Time Podcast, which also features an interview with Indiana Pacers coach Frank Vogel, whose team is struggling right now as George attempts to make that transition from All-Star to franchise player.
As the playoffs get closer and closer, the true franchise players will reveal themselves. And once the postseason hits, there is no hiding …
As always, we welcome your feedback. You can follow the entire crew, including the Hang Time Podcast, co-hosts Sekou Smith of NBA.com, Lang Whitaker of NBA.com’s All-Ball Blog and renaissance man Rick Fox of NBA TV, as well as our new super producer Gregg (just like Popovich) Waigand and the best engineer in the business, Jarell “I Heart Peyton Manning” Wall.