DISCLAIMER: If you are against fighting in the NBA and you think that competitive violence is bad for the game, then don’t read this, because you are a wuss.
In basketball, toughness is all important. Most of the time, the opponent who is more aggressive emerges victorious. However, basketball is evolving, and players like Ron Artest and Dennis Rodman are harder to find. With various changes in the rules such as hand-checking, making it harder for defensive players to play physical, and refs calling technical fouls more often, it’s safe to say the game has gotten soft. Not to mention the flopping outbreak that has affected our beloved game.
This is why I made an All-NBA Bad Boy Team; these NBA players could retire today and take the WWE by storm due to their extreme toughness and fascinating personalities. If Vince McMahon were an NBA GM, this would be his dream team:
PG- Patrick Beverley:
Everyone needs the villain that you love to hate. Patrick Beverley is like a fly you can try to swat away, but always dodges you and inevitably comes back to buzz right in your ear. Not only will Beverley press your point guard full court all game, he will do it while sneaking in an elbow on one play, or go after you even after a whistle is blown.
FIRST TEAM ALL-DEFENSE
Another lockdown defender, Tony Allen, is essential for this squad. Also known as “The Grindfather,” Tony Allen is a team-first veteran with a high basketball IQ. Allen is a fan favorite, not because he drills threes like Curry, or flies high like Blake Griffin, but because he is relatable to fans with his grit and grind attitude. Allen is the only guard in the league who can’t shoot and can still be a plus on offense due to his ability to make hard cuts to the basket for easy buckets and offensive boards. And above all else, Tony is great with kids!
We’re seeing a trend here: FIRST TEAM ALL-DEFENSE. True, everyone listed on this team so far are lockdown defenders, but I swear it’s just a coincidence; otherwise Kawhi Leonard would be taking this spot. However, being a crazy good defender is not all it takes for making the All-NBA Bad Boy Team. Green earns a spot because he plays tough, but also because of his charisma. Draymond Green is in a contract year, meaning his mic skills are at his peak:
Rainbow Randolph has definitely matured since his days in Portland and New York, but that does not mean he’s lost his entertainment factor. He may not have the rock hard abs of your typical NBA Bad Boy, but he is definitely one of the strongest players in the league. Add in the fact that this 6’9” 260 lbs beast is petrified of house cats, and you’ve got yourself a deep and enigmatic character beloved by fans everywhere.
I watched Game 2 of the Warriors vs. Grizzlies game where Draymond Green accidentally hit Mike Conley in his already injured face. The communication between Green and Randolph afterwards made me realize these two would be the greatest WWE tag team in NBA history.
C- Demarcus Cousins:
Boogie is awesome. We haven’t seen a superstar with this kind of power since Shaq. Just like Shaq, Boogie is an automatic two points if he catches the ball within five feet from the basket without a double team. He’s so much fun to watch because you can really feel how much he hates every opponent and ref. I have never seen an angrier basketball player and probably never will.
When talking about electrifying talents, Russell Westbrook is the first player who comes to mind. Westbrook goes 110% on every possession and is the most versatile guard with 11 triple-doubles this season. The main reason Westbrook fits this team is how hard he plays, and how chippy he can get with his opponents, similar to Boogie. He would probably fight his teammate, Patrick Beverley, for the basketball, adding another layer of excitement for the fans!
Earl “J.R.” Smith:
This guy is definitely more laid back than everyone else on this team, but intensity is not all it takes to be on the All-NBA Bad Boy Team. What J.R. lacks in intensity, he makes up with unpredictability. One game he may go 8-12 from three in the Eastern Conference Finals, another game he may elbow Jason Terry in the face, punch Jae Crowder (also) in the face, or just cheap shot Jerryd Bayless for no apparent reason.
My favorite wrestler is Shawn Michaels. Michaels was like a fine wine: only improving with age. Pierce is the same way, considering in 2015 he still continues to hit game winning shots and still continues to talk shit to players. Pierce is a master trash talker and one of the best clutch shooters of all-time. If Pierce was a wrestler, he would get the crap beaten out of him and then miraculously super kick his opponent and win the match. He would then proceed to pick up a mic and yell “That’s why I’m here!”
The next Bond villain, Jusuf Nurkic, is relatively unknown. This 6’11” 280 lbs Bosnian youngster is not even old enough to legally enjoy a beer in the United States, but he considers himself a veteran with his trash talking ability. He has already taunted Kobe Bryant and Demarcus Cousins to name a few. I’m not quite sure if they can understand what he’s saying though, because his English is not particularly good.
The vocal leader of this team is both the most hated and most respected player in the NBA. I always understood that KG was a dirty player who would pull crap like holding onto players’ jerseys when refs were not looking, but I never understood the degree psychological warfare that KG would use against his opponents until I saw it happen live, at the legendary Honey Nut Cheerios game in Madison Square Garden:
Carmelo Anthony is one of the most laid back players in the game, and Garnett made him practically lose his mind so bad that he waited for Garnett outside of the Celtics bus after the game. After this incident, Reggie Miller passed the torch to KG as the most hated person in New York.
The young Marcus Smart reminds many Celtics fans of Tony Allen, with a similar grit and grind attitude. Smart has already proven that he is going to be a top perimeter defender in this league. However, where Smart might differ from Allen is that he lets his emotion get the best of him. He may be more of a Ron Artest than a Tony Allen, and that’s not the worst thing in the world from an entertainment standpoint.
It may not be fair to label Marcus Smart as a hot head, because his altercation with a fan did happen in college, but let's roll with it anyway.
By far the weirdest selection for this team, but still deserving nonetheless. Stephenson has had a very poor transition in Charlotte this season, but he was so much fun to watch in Indiana, he had to gain a spot. Any fellow Lebron hater has to love the work of Lance Stephenson:
Next time you say, “The NBA sucks because everyone is a crybaby” or “the NBA has gone soft, the refs are ruining the game,” just remember that there are guys like Lance Stephenson, waiting to blow into Lebron’s ear, like a true Bad Boy.