NBA legend Tim Hardaway Sr. talks about the art of passing, sharing his opinions on what makes a great passer and on who some of the best passers in the League are.
“What makes a great passer and a great creator in this day? You have to want to do it, you have to want to go out there and be that person that makes those type of plays,” the five-time NBA All-Star said. “Passing game in the modern NBA, I think it’s fantastic. What Chris Paul does out there with no look passes. James Harden with no look passes.
“I’m going to tell you a guy that doesn’t get enough credit for his passing. And that’s Draymond Green. You’ve got to know when to pass, how to pass. Have your peripheral vision to know who’s about to cut who’s is going to fake to go back and come back out for a jump shot. Understanding your teammates and understanding how to pass the basketball.”
Hardaway named several of the modern NBA stars as players that really love to assists to their teammates. “It’s a lost art, you got about 5-6 guys in NBA that love to pass the ball. Luka Doncic, Chris Paul, Ben Simmons, Draymond Green, the Joker,” he said. “Even Jimmy Butler, he likes to pass the ball too.
“So, you have to have that passing so that it can be contagious throughout the team. When you pass the ball around the ball gets to the player quicker than the defensive player gets to the ball. You can always anticipate, but if you anticipate wrong it’s an easy and wide open jump shot.”
Hardaway also shared his thoughts on Luka Doncic and his ability to find his teammates on the floor. “When he’s out there on the floor, it seems like he’s playing by himself. He has his own beat, he has his own rhythm,” he said. “He knows how to get to the rim, but he knows where everybody is at on the floor. Sometimes he passes behind his head. Sometimes, he no-look behind-the-back pass.
“He just knows when a guy is about to pop open. I like his charisma, I like how he sets his teammates up. He gives his teammates more open looks than anybody else in the NBA. And that’s all you ask for. If your teammate gives you open looks the onus on you is to put the ball in the basket. And that is what makes the game easy.”