“I think they’ve got a lot of players who think they’re better than they are,” Barkley said.
Those words found their way to the ears of Pistons coach and president Stan Van Gundy who didn’t disagree with what Barkley said, but rather is of the opinion that thinking you’re better than you are actually has a positive impact.
“That (criticism) would probably qualify most every team in the NBA,” Van Gundy said.
“You have to believe in this league,” he continued. “I’ve seen guys not make it because they didn’t believe in themselves enough. If you’re going to walk out there and play against the best players in the world every night, you better have a belief in yourself, in what you’re doing. I think our guys have that. I would want that.
“They think they’re better than they are? That’s everybody, but I think that ego, if you want to call it that, is absolutely necessary in professional sports.”
Both men have great basketball minds, and it’s fair to say both have a point. If you’re Marcus Morris trying to play like you’re Michael Jordan, you’re going to find out very soon you can’t do Michael Jordan things. However, to be able to be effective in a league filled with the best basketball players in the world, you need almost superhuman confidence that you can compete with and outperform the competition each and every night.
What do you think, nation? Which side of the fence are you on? Should the Pistons encourage their players to ‘know their role’, or should Van Gundy continue to encourage his players to think like their the best player on the court at any given time?