Age of the Ageless

Posted by By at 26 December, at 04 : 27 AM Print

Most professional sports have a best before date which athletes must strictly adhere to in order to “get theres”, “stack that paper” or more appropriately, plan for the future. Football players (besides QB’s) have probably the shortest careers while some chess players can play well into their 60’s without a debilitating ACL injury. Basketball seems to fall comfortably in the middle with most players hitting their prime between 28-32 years of age. Sure there are the unfortunate anomalies such as the “The curious case of Greg Oden” or Eddy Curry’s food buffet addiction but most players begin their decent in their mid 30’s.  With the advancement of medical treatments, improvement in physiotherapy and realization that playing in the League truly is a privilege (think Latrell Sprewell), players are able to stretch their careers and more importantly, their primes. There are a handful of players that we watched in the late 90’s who continue- more than a decade later (Shaq nearly 2) – to be integral to their teams success. Following is a list of a few of the most notable basketball seniors who have truly become ageless; Steve Nash, Grant Hill, Shaq, J-Kidd, Ray Allen.  Nash is a mystery of human specimen as he is turning 37 in Feb and putting up comparable numbers to his MVP campaigns of 2005/2006. He continues to be top 5 in the league in assists and has one of the most efficient field goal percentages, especially for a guard. What he lacks in raw athleticism (think D-Rose or Westbrook) and good looks (think Corey Maggette and Rudy Fernandez) he makes up for in basketball IQ, endurance and a palpable love for the game. His teammate and tenured counterpart Grant Hill has also been playing out of his mind (for his age). Hisstats this season are the best they’ve been in the last 5 years and on December 19th he hung 30 points and posted 11 Boards on OKC’s Kevin Durant. Shaq is a perennial basketball kryptonite where teams still have to adjust their defences to contain this 325 pound social media instigator. Just ask the Ru Paul of basketball, Chris Bosh. Yes, his numbers have gone down markedly but given enough minutes and touches he can still hang 25 and 10 on your mother’s favourite team. J-Kidd has had more of an unassuming impact on his team. He is still due for a half dozen more triple doubles before his career is up. More importantly, he runs Dallas’ offence which has them playing some of the best basketball in the ultra-competitive Western hemisphere. Ray Ray is probably the best off-the-ball player in the last 20 years. He may even be the best ever but my pre Jordan-Bird-Magic era knowledge is limited besides what I read from Bill Simmons. If Ray Allen’s shot was a female she would look like the lovechild of Beyonce and Megan Fox, with the voice of Alicia Keys and the influence of Oprah. The perfect blend of form, function and style. He continues to abuse defenders off high screens and open looks while still defending some of the best scorers in the game (ask Lebron and Kobe). These players may be the exception but like Madonna, Cher and Mick Jagger they continue to perform with all the passion, excitement and talent as their younger counterparts.

The Bowse's Word

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2 Comments

  1. Zig, 7 years ago Reply

    Great article…but Corey Maggette aint that good looking?

    Everyone knows Nash just seems to get better with age, but Grant Hill has really surprised me. His numbers this year have been phenomenal… will be interesting to see if he can keep it up the rest of the season….

  2. Jeff Smarth, 7 years ago Reply

    Im a huge Nash backer! Hes got mad skillz. Shaq may be fat, but he’s got some serious size and power!


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