Dominique Wilkins and JJ Redick missed facing off on the court by nearly a decade. But that won’t stop them from getting embroiled in a back-and-forth media debate.
Last week, Redick was on First Take debating the historical standing of Larry Bird with Chris “Mad Dog” Russo. During the argument, Redick pushed back on the commonly fostered narrative that today’s NBA isn’t as physical as in previous eras. That was a take that prompted Dominique Wilkins to go off during a SiriusXM Radio interview.
“Don’t crap on us to prove your point, because it doesn’t make sense and it’s not valid,” Wilkins ranted after questioning if Redick is stupid. “I just don’t like the disrespect. And to say that about Larry Bird? Less physicality? Is he stupid? It’s just a stupid comment to make.”
And on the latest episode of Redick’s The Old Man and the Three podcast, the ESPN analyst and former NBA shooting guard responded.
On this week’s episode, @jj_redick responds to Dominique Wilkins’s comments and the general thesis that he doesn’t respect players from past generations https://t.co/uZKRkk236s pic.twitter.com/OSXtjtzPsI
— TheOldMan&TheThree (@OldManAndThree) February 24, 2023
“The trope that every old talking head uses, Mad Dog, Stephen A., ‘physicality, physicality, physicality.’ My entire point about the segment was that outside of hard fouls and fighting, the physicality, the basketball play, by play, by play, is not that much different than today’s NBA,” Redick said. “But it’s become such a talking point that people take it as gospel.”
“The idea that I’m disrespecting older players for questioning media narratives around that era, that’s not disrespect!” Redick continued. “What I said then, what I’ve said 15 or 16 times since then, on the podcast, on ESPN, ‘players should be celebrated, we should congratulate greatness for that era. The greatest players of every era…they would be fine in any era.’ And one of the pushbacks on that comment is always, ‘today’s players wouldn’t be fine in the ‘80s and ‘90s,’ which is f*cking horsesh*t.”
Redick added that he hates debating players from different eras. Unfortunately for Redick, he tends to go viral when he debates players from different eras. That prompts ESPN to keep asking him to debate players from different eras with Russo and Smith.