Giannis Antetokounmpo vs. LeBron James: Which superstar blocked better in the NBA Finals?

Devin Booker scored 42 points in Game 4 of the 2021 NBA Finals, including 18 points on 7 of 7 shots in the third quarter. Chris Middleton scored 40 points in the last two minutes and 15 seconds of the game, and defeated the Suns 10-4 to lead Milwaukee to victory. 109-103 win More than Phoenix.

However, it was a game of Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo that allowed NBA Twitter members lose their mindsIn the fourth quarter of Wednesday night, Antetokounmpo brought fans one of the most incredible defensive highlights in the history of the NBA Finals.

Take it, Mike Brin:

“Giannis just finished a wonderful block, a wonderful game,” Milwaukee coach Mike Budenholzer said after the fourth game. “He has the ability to cover the ground and reach that point, reach the top-that was a special moment in the NBA Finals, and we “will need more people.” His impact on the game at both ends of the court-this is an important time block. This is his ability. “

But one of Antetokounmpo’s teammates went further. Bucks guard Pat Connaughton called Antetokounmpo’s rejection of DeAndre Ayton “the best block ever.” Yes, he even put it on top of LeBron James’ legendary blocks in the 2016 NBA Finals.

more: Antetokounmpo explains the early withdrawal of games 3 and 4

“Obviously, we are a bit biased, you can also talk about LeBron’s block,” Connaughton said. “But in terms of a block he screened for the pick and roll, he had to judge the position of the pass. The position where Ayton caught and tried to dunk, above the penalty area, is almost impressive.”

Okay, Pat, let’s bring this debate into the “basketball court”. Which former MVP has the better NBA Finals blocked shots: Antetokounmpo or James?

The case of LeBron James

Settings: Game 7 of the 2016 NBA Finals turned into a rock game in the fourth quarter. The Cavaliers and Warriors seem to be stuck at 89-89 for an hour. With less than two minutes left, the Golden State Warriors seemed to have an easy layup. Stephen Curry and Andre Iguodala had a smooth two-on-one training against JR Smith. Iguodala passed the ball to Curry, who kicked the ball back to Iguodala. then. ..

Performance: “Oh, blocked by James! LeBron James was rejected!” The Cavaliers star is a few steps behind Curry and Iguodala, but he has been following the game. Smith forced Iguodala to hold the ball long enough to give James a chance-and this opportunity is what he needs.

Referenceable: “I’m like not to give up the game,” James said. “If you have a chance, try to play like this. I think like JR, please don’t foul him. I know I’m there, I can do it, I can do it. I thought,’JR don’t Foul him, “Bron got the ball before it hit the backboard. We did it.”

Iguodala’s reaction: “I thought,’Man, that’s the same for me.’ I’m a fan. That’s great,” Iguodala said. “When he stopped it, I was like,’Damn, someone was shot.’ I thought it was funny. Someone played well. What do you want me to do? If you like basketball, you should say,’ Dude played well. F-it.'”

result: Less than a minute after James blocked the block, Kyrie Irving shot the biggest shot in franchise history, with a right-wing three-pointer giving the Cavaliers a 92-89 lead. They went on to win with a final score of 93-89, bringing Cleveland City’s first championship in 52 years and opening the door for anyone who wants to make a joke about the Warriors leading the 3-1 series.

The case of Giannis Antetokounmpo

Settings: After falling by as many as 9 points in the fourth quarter of Game 4 of the 2021 NBA Finals, the Bucks counterattacked. With more than one minute left in the game, Middleton led the Suns by two points with a jumper. In the subsequent possession, Phoenix dribbled with Booker and Ayton near the top of the goal. Booker drew Antetokounmbo to him and then passed the high ball to Ayton who cut in. then. ..

Performance: “Blocked by ANTETOKOUNMPO! Blocked from GIANNIS!” Antetokounmpo somehow managed to control the ball, and returned to Ayton in time to pat the racket away cleanly.

Can quote: “It’s just a hustle. Honestly, I thought I would be dunked,” Antetokounmpo said. “But you know, go ahead and do everything you can to win the game. Just put yourself in a position where you can win the game… It doesn’t surprise me. I see it is coming. With the ball on one of his hands, he layup too far. So I knew he was trying to lob and I paid a lot.

“You are a bit risky. You feel a bit. I feel him rolling to the rim behind me, so I know the only chance to stop is to jump to the rim and try to cover that angle for him to score.”

Iguodala’s reaction: “The Giannis block is crazy. [James]-esque! “Iguodala tweeted.

result: Middleton hit a key jumper again and made some free throws in the game to expand Milwaukee’s lead, while the Bucks kept it to avoid falling into a 3-1 dilemma. (Insert your warrior joke here, guys.)

judgment

Now that Connaughton has started to argue, we should give him a chance to explain his position in more depth.

“I will look at the criteria for the largest block in history based on the difficulty of the block, then time and score,” Connaughton said. “I think obviously LeBron’s time and scoring might have an advantage in that situation because it helped them win the championship in that game. But I think the difference between time and scoring and the difficulty of the block difference gives Giannis’ advantage is only because of a chase block, you have more reading ability. Obviously this is a great block. We are talking about the two best blocks ever, so I don’t want to discredit that block.

“But Giannis is defending the pick-and-roll. He is defending the pick-and-roll. This is a game they have completed time and time again. [Booker] Threw a great pass. He threw the ball high, away from any defenders, and Giannis was able to recover. He is the best defensive player of the year. There is a reason to win the MVP twice. I think it is these types of games that can read where Ayton is, where the ball is, and have athletic ability to reach such a high level and get all Basketball is the reason why I want to give him an advantage. “

It feels like a sweet place. If the two games are evaluated purely based on difficulty, Antetokounmpo has a slight advantage. Antetokounmpo had to turn around quickly, jumped into the air, and found the ball in a very narrow window. In addition, Ayton caught the ball above the square without anyone in front of him, while Iguodala had to hide under Smith.

However, if you consider the stakes, James must be first. We are talking about Game 7 of the NBA Finals. What can be bigger?

But in fact, the whole exercise is just an excuse to watch two great blocks over and over again. There are no losers—well, except for Ayton and Iguodala. Sorry everyone.



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