For the better part of the last half-decade or so, NBA legendary center Hakeem Olajuwon has been working with various current NBA players to help refine their post games. Olajuwon was one of the most fundamentally sound centers to ever man the post, and found fame with his patented “Dream Shake” to free himself up for easy looks at the basket.
Olajuwon was recently interviewed about some of the players in the NBA that he’s worked with, and had some nice words to say about the Lakers’ Kobe Bryant.
“Kobe is a genius, you know. He understands, he loves the post. He told me, ‘Big guys, they’ve come out of the post because they don’t love the post.’ If he could stay there all day, he’d stay in the post.
Now he wants to get more fluid in the post. And what you see these last couple years, he’s maximizing in the post.”
These words should come as no surprise as Bryant has had some of the NBA’s best footwork both on the perimeter and in the post. As his athleticism has declined with his age, he’s spent more time in the post every year. Bryant took his trip to Houston to visit Olajuwon after the 2009 Finals win over the Magic.
Another guy who took a trip to see Olajuwon was LeBron James. James, however, made the trek to Houston after losing the 2011 NBA Finals to the Dallas Mavericks. Olajuwon said that James was incredibly professional and looked great in the post after three days of work. When asked about who he would like to work with, Olajuwon mentioned a certain power forward from the Clippers.
Not a player I want to, but a player that needs [help] is Blake Griffin. If you look at Blake, he’s very explosive, but he needs the moves that can get him in position to finish. […] So that would be an ideal guy to work with when I see how explosive he is, I’ll give him all of these moves to take him to a whole different level.
It’s not a secret that Blake Griffin doesn’t have the best footwork in the post, but if Olajuwon can do the things that he did for both Bryant and James, Griffin can potentially take his game to a new level. Check out the video below.
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