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“No One Like DJ? How About Clyde?”

Posted by Steve Bzomowski on March 1, 2007

In the intro to the espn radio interview with Bird re: DJ (“Bird: DJ was more than a point guard”), there is a short piece in which Bob Ryan states that there was no one like DJ, that he played his position like no one before or since. Dan Patrick, the interviewer, brought Ryan’s point up to Bird and suggested Joe Dumars as a comparison. Bird rejected it citing DJ’s duties as point guard.

All that came to mind after seeing Walt “Clyde” Frazier at The Garden last night. (He does radio for the Knicks.)

How about it? Was Clyde’s game comparable to that played by DJ?

1) wasn’t a classic point, but assumed those duties;

2) was a true defensive stopper and game changer from the defensive end;

3) subordinated his game, somewhat, so that others and the team could flourish;

4) rose to the occasion during big (and the biggest) games;

5) fearless and astoundingly effective at taking it to the hoop in crucial situations;

6) not a classic shooting form (that’s for sure), but, similar to DJ, could be counted on to take it and make it if necessary;

7) surprising rebounder from the position.

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5 Responses to ““No One Like DJ? How About Clyde?””

  1. Greg Herr said

    More similarities:

    1) Not just defense in general but stealing off the other guy’s dribble from some incredible ballhandlers.

    2) Ran the show for a team that for at least one year was one of the best teams ever — teams that had stars but played so well together that they were a treat to watch. Only the Suns come close to that level today.

    Differences:

    1) Clyde was always acknowledged as a star of the team, if not the star.

    2) Clyde was and is a very handsome guy.

    3) DJ was a leaper, at least early in his career.

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  2. I’ll go along with “acknowledged as a star of the team, if not the star” but let’s not forget about Willis. Now I’m trying to imagine trading Clyde and DJ and what that would have done to the respective teams. DJ would have had to score more; Clyde would have had to subjugate ego.

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  3. Josh Kratka said

    Thanks for the plug for my all-time favorite player (just ahead of the pre-coaching version of Phil “Elbows” Jackson).

    One more note about the all-around “game” of Clyde Frazier: he has, without question, the largest vocabulary of any sportscaster I’ve ever heard. The only other person I can think of who’d even be in the conversation would be Howard Cosell (OK, maybe Costas, too), the embodiment of pomposity; yet Frazier, as you’d expect, doesn’t force it, uses big words appropriately, in the flow of the game, with no flash or show-off.

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  4. Hobie Jones said

    I loved # 10 for the 1970’s Knicks – Walt Frazier was a great (overused word, but not in this instance) player. A shame he had to leave the Atlanta area to attend college at Southern Illinois. BUT have any of you seen the highlights of The Pistol scoring 68 against the Knicks? It appears to me (YouToob is a bit grainy) many of Pete’s points were scored against Clyde and/or Dean “The Dream” Meminger – both outstanding defensive players…not sure what my point is but I think it is this…sometimes truly great offensive players like Pistol, Jerry West, Elgin Baylor, Oscar, Michael, Larry and the modern guys simply can not be stopped whether if be DJ, Clyde or whomever…love the banter on this sight. Sorry for being slightly off topic.

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  5. Hobie – – When a guy’s got the green light – and I’d say Pistol had the green light shining brightly in his DNA somewhere – and he’s got skills like these guys have got skills and then they got on a roll and they’re in a rhythm, forget it; ain’t nuthin’ you can do but hope you don’t wind-up in a YouTube video lookin’ real bad!

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