Kareem Abdul-Jabbar talks about Rockets star James Harden’s signature step-back
Houston Rockets star James Harden continues his stellar performance this season, and while the team hasn’t been able to replicate their dominance last year, they’re still one of the most dangerous teams in the league, and The Beard remains almost unstoppable on the offensive end.
Harden’s signature move, the step back 3-pointer, has opposing players shaking their heads as they continue to look for answers to stop it. It has been blocked once or twice this season, and that’s it. Some people tend to believe that it’s as unguardable as Hall of Famer Kareem Abdul Jabbar’s legendary skyhook.
Recently, Abdul-Jabbar shared his sentiments about Harden’s move, and although he praised the reigning MVP for it, he also said that it wouldn’t work in his era.
— NBA TV (@NBATV) April 5, 2019
Kareem dominated the league for two decades, winning six championships during that span, and throughout his career, opposing teams never found an answer to his patented skyhook. Abdul-Jabbar was an unstoppable force in the painted area. He usually bullied his way through smaller opponents and would use the skyhook against taller, much stronger bigs. He did it while absorbing plenty of contact as a lot of physicality was allowed during the ’70s and ’80s.
Several changes in the rules have been applied since then and they worked in Harden’s favor. Right now, the simplest physical contacts could result in fouls, and that’s why opposing players are hesitant to be physical against him, as they could easily get into foul trouble.
The game has already evolved, and a lot of players have been able to adjust. But no one seemed to have adapted better than Harden.