lotus wrote:Easily. Martin is a quality shooting guard that has as diverse skills as Darden. He can carry the scoring duties when durant is on the bench. He can score as easily too.
Martin is a good SG, but he does NONE of the things that Harden can do as well as Harden can do them.
Just looking at basic statistics, Harden averaged more rebounds (4.1) than Martin (2.7), more assists (3.7) than Martin (2.8), with a better assist to turnover ratio (1.68) than Martin (1.55), more steals (1.0) than Martin (0.7), and more blocks (0.2) than Martin (0.1).
Martin scored more (17.1) than Harden (16.8), but he took more than 3 more shots a game to get that extra 0.3 points. Martin shot only 41.3% from the field while Harden shot 49.1%. Martin shot only 34.7% from deep while Harden shot 39%.
Looking deeper, Harden's shot selection is much different and very important to the team concept. Harden's aggressiveness off the bench created foul opportunities on opposing bigs. This let Westbrook and Durant do their thing with less fear of being challenged inside.
Harden took a third of his shots at the rim last season (281/843). Martin took 10.9% of his shots at the rim last season (57/537). Now they both took a lot of jump shots. Harden took 555 while Martin took 471. But the 555 shots Harden took amounted to 65.8% of his shots. Martin's 471 was a whopping 87.7% of his shots. He almost never took a shot that wasn't a jumper last season.
Then there's 4th quarter and OT scoring. Clutch factor. Harden was one of OKC's must clutch performers because he could score in the 4th quarter early and give Durant and Westbrook an edge. He was able to keep other teams at bay while those guys rested. His FG% in the first 3 quarters was 44.5%, 48.3%, and 40.2% respectively. In the 4th quarter his FG% sky rockets to 51.8% and 66.7% in overtime. Martin on the other hand averages below 40% in the 2nd half and overtime.
Lastly, there's age, defense, and athleticism. James Harden just turned 23 in August. Kevin Martin will turn 30 next February. Kevin Martin has missed more than 25 games in 4 of his 8 seasons and 10 or more games in 6 of his 8 his seasons. He's missed more than 30 games twice. Harden in his short 3 year career as missed a total of 10 games. Harden is far more durable than Martin has ever been.
Part of what made OKC tick was that Harden fit in with their speed and leaping ability. Martin has neither of those things. Harden frequently defended Kobe Bryant and did a good job at it. Over the course of Martin's career he's matched up against Kobe 17 times in the regular season. Kobe has won 11 of those games averaging 31.2 points, 7.2 assists, 5.9 rebounds, and 1.7 steals shooting 48.3% from the field and 34.1% from deep. Kobe has matched up against Harden 10 times in the regular season and won 6 of those games. Kobe averaged 25 points, 5.1 assists, 5.8 rebounds, and 1.5 steals shooting 41% from the field and 26.7% from deep.
lotus wrote:Darden is fine if you fast break and leave him open for 3's, but Martin can create a greater variety of scoring opportunies. Let's see how harden does without durant and westbrook to distract the defense.
Actually Martin doesn't take a great variety of shots. Like I said most of his shots were jump shots. He's very efficient from 16 feet to the three point line, but outside of that small area he's not very efficient at all. And the vast majority of his shots come from that spot. Harden doesn't take a lot of shots from 3-16 feet, but he gets to the basket WAY more. His variety may be lacking, but his effectiveness sure isn't.
Let's see how Martin does when he's asked to carry this team off the bench.
lotus wrote:Also, Lamb is a good prospect who is probably as good as.any young player on the lakers. And they get picks.
That's great, but those things won't come into play this season when they're facing the Lakers in the playoffs. Unless of course Lamb takes some MASSIVE steps during the season and outplays Martin. But that's a slim chance.