Nets Preview: Spanarkel on Game Changers

10/12/2012 10:58 AM ET
By Lou DiPietro

In the flesh (and perhaps in wax too), Carmelo Anthony is one of the NBA's purest scorers.(AP)
These days, it seems that on any given night, any NBA player is capable of scoring 20, 30, 40, or even 50 points, or grabbing 10, 15, or even 20 rebounds.

But when you do one – or both – night in and night out simply because you can, that makes you a “game changer.”

As part of our Nets season preview, we asked broadcasters Ian Eagle, Jim Spanarkel, and Mike Fratello to list their “game changers” and tell us who they thought the best pure scorers and rebounders are in the NBA today.

On Day 2 of our season preview, we present the first part of that series courtesy of Mr. Spanarkel – a man who himself averaged 17.6 points per game in his four years at Duke University and ranked in the Top 10 in the NBA in Offensive Rating for the 1981-82 season.

Scorer No. 1: Kevin Durant, Oklahoma City
“Durant is just so multi-talented. He has the ability to score on the break and has the finesse game to score inside, but he’s also a great long-range shooter.

Scorer No. 2: LeBron James, Miami
“LeBron could be one of the best scorers in the league, but because he’s so focused on passing the ball, it takes away from his ultimate scoring ability. But, if he wanted to just purely look to score, he could be one of the best at it.

Scorer No. 3: Carmelo Anthony, New York
“He’s just terrific from all angles. He can post you up, he can put it on the floor and go by you for one or two dribbles and shoot it, and he has the long-range game as well.

And as far as rebounding goes, Spanarkel’s Top 3 are all certified ball-hawks, but each one brings something different to the table as their main weapon on the glass.

Rebounder No. 1: Dwight Howard, Los Angeles Lakers
“The reason Howard is so good is because he’s so active and alert to where the basketball is at both ends of the floor.”

Rebounder No. 2: Kevin Love, Minnesota
“I love guys who track the basketball, and once again, Love has that ability, and he’s very good in terms of timing and angles on the boards.”

Rebounder No. 3: Andrew Bynum, Philadelphia
“Size never hurts when it comes to rebounding, and he’s got it.”

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