NBA / Jul 20, 2010 / 12:30 pm

Hard In Da Paint: Top 10 NBA Aggressors

Amar'e Stoudemire, Dime #14

My man CGF put it best: Waka Flocka Flame‘s new song, “Hard In Da Paint” (NSFW version) is the kind of track that makes you want to assault your mom with a skillet. Or to be a little more tame, it’s like I told my little cousins: You have to dance to it with a “something stinks” look on your face.

Waka won’t crack any list of the best lyricists in the rap game, but he’s a go-to guy when it comes to making songs you want on your pre-game iPod playlist to get you in the mood to play ball. These 10 NBA players personify the “Hard In Da Paint” mantra:

DeJuan Blair — The quintessential “undersized” big man who makes a living with his effort, grit and fearlessness in the paint. Blair’s rookie year included a 27-point, 23-rebound stat line against Dallas, and a 28-point, 21-rebound outing at Oklahoma City. And as you may have heard once or twice, he’s doing it with no cartilage in his knees.

Amar’e Stoudemire — I don’t get why so many people think Amar’e can’t play at an All-Star level without Steve Nash. The season before Nash arrived in Phoenix, 21-year-old Amar’e put up 20 points and nine boards a night. And while he’s lost some of that explosiveness due to injuries and time, Amar’e has also matured and become a smarter player. He’s already proven he can dominate when Nash isn’t dominant alongside him, and he’ll continue proving it with the Knicks. Few big men can inflict bruises to the ego like STAT …

Kenyon Martin — … But one of those big men is K-Mart. He tries to bring down the basket support with every dunk and is one of the most intimidating dudes in the League with his hustle, snarl and half-crazy glint in his eye.

Kendrick Perkins — Even without the scowl that could land him on the cover of Murder Dog magazine, Perk makes this list. He’s a grimy defender in the post who isn’t afraid to use his six fouls and loves to mix it up under the glass. You saw how vital he was to the Celtics when they got destroyed on the boards by the Lakers in Game 7 of the Finals while Perkins was out injured.

Derrick Rose — Attacks the basket with more abandon (albeit not reckless) than any point guard in the League. When D-Rose elevates, he’s looking for a dunk, not a layup or an and-one. He’s like Tony Parker on uppers with a Napoleon complex.

Manu Ginobili — Just because he’s crafty enough to avoid some contact and occasionally acts like a soccer player doesn’t mean Manu doesn’t go hard. I can only think of a few two-guards that are as effective as Manu when venturing into the paint, and he’ll still get up and cram on you if you’re not ready for him.

Big Baby Davis — His nickname might be soft, and this isn’t exactly the most O.G. clip on the Internet, but his game is far from dainty. Big Baby is the living-under-a-bridge version of Charles Barkley, a ground-bound short power forward who feels like he’s the toughest guy in the gym. He’s got a lot of critics, but Baby won games for the Celtics in the playoffs by being the energy big off the bench and at times dominating taller opponents.

LeBron James — Watch how the defense shifts like the Red Sea when LBJ comes barreling into the paint. After learning lessons from Damon Jones, Tim Duncan, Kevin Garnett and Rasheed Wallace, nobody really wants to get in LeBron’s way when he has a full head of steam. And when they do, he’s strong enough to finish and-ones with guys literally hugging him and holding his arms down.

Dwight Howard — Numbers don’t lie. Five out of his six years in the League, he’s led the NBA in total rebounds, and twice in blocks. The two-time defending Defensive Player of the Year can dominate a game on that end, and while his offensive game still isn’t where a lot of people want, he’s the focal point of every defense Orlando faces. Usually the plan is “Foul.”

Carmelo Anthony“We go hard in the paint like Carmelo / This is for the boys who sip purp and sip yellow.” That was from Bun B’s verse on “3 Kings,” and helps certify ‘Melo for this group. Or consider one of his nicknames is “The Bully,” or that he’s got power-forward strength and aggressiveness with a small forward’s skill and smooth scoring ability. In the most complimentary way possible, ‘Melo is simply a load.

Honorable mentionAl Horford, Gerald Wallace, Allen Iverson, Dwyane Wade, Andrew Bogut

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  • Bizz

    I’d put Wade over Ginobili.

  • Diggity Dave

    Amare can score, but his rebounding is very suspect. Not mentioning Wade makes this entire article a joke. The guy is often criticized for how much contact he takes going into the paint, and how it’ll “inevitably” shorten his career.

  • alex

    I’d put Crash Wallace over all of ‘em

  • Jah

    Dwyane Wade?

  • http://therulers.bandcamp.com/ pacetola

    Corey Maggette aka bad porn

  • http://twitter.com/PoppiGEE POPPI GEE

    So sad Yao will never crack this list and that is what keeps him from making that next level.

  • Joe’s Momma

    @ Alex

    yea, Crash needs to be on the list.

    Dude collapsed a lung trying to dunk. Crazy rebounder and attacks the paint.

  • Stunnaboy09

    Rose is mini-Wade how can he get in there over Flash.

    Crash DEFINITELY has to be there, I mean guys nickname is CRASH. No one defines crazy more than G-Wallace.

    Other people I’d put are Rondo, Boozer, Milsap and almost every undersized PF.

  • http://www.twitter.com/dynastybball dynastybball

    Amare being on this list invalidates the entire thing. Just because you guys post a picture of him “posing” with a snarl doesn’t mean the dude is tough. Sure he goes hard in the paint when he’s trying to score… Guy is like a soft delicate butterfly when it comes to defense and rebounding.

    Putting Amare in this article is akin to putting soft Lamarcus Aldridge on this list.

  • SJ

    Gotta ask… how is Shaq not on this list? Sure, he’s not the old shaq that would break the glass one-handed, but he can still beast in the lane.

    I haven’t heard the song and don’t plan to, so maybe I’m getting the meaning of the list wrong?

  • detroit dave

    I gotta go with 95 Sprewell. When he came thru the lane with a full head of steam, nigg@s got out the way! Period!

  • x0t

    lol Waka doesnt “make songs”. The producer makes the song. Once the days and weeks that go into making a hot beat are done, its a simple matter to find some ignorant teenage moron to clumsily utilize his 20 word vocabulary to further the genocide of the black race.

  • IE

    Reggie Evans is pretty aggresive guarding da paint…

  • Ian

    get amare out of there sub in crash and the list is good


  • zaboo

    I though Stevie Franchise wiped that look off Amare’s face back in the day?

  • John

    Baby-eater Maxiell got to be on that list.

  • vince

    “Waka Flocka Flame’s new song, “Hard In Da Paint” (NSFW version) is the kind of track that makes you want to assault your mom with a skillet”

    Actually this song made me want to attack Wicky Wocky Flacka with a skillet. What is this crap?

  • yoda

    this song is supposed to be on your pre game play list? for what? curling?
    if you want song that pumps your adrenaline, better use something like this


  • vince

    BTW, going through this list I reminisce the times where with had Dr X. Mason and Oakley. Mourning and Big Ben. Fortson. Mahorn.

    80% of this list would trip over their vaginas going against the guys I mentioned.

  • D-NICE

    Still don’t know how D Wade is just an honorable mention…..He goes “hard in da paint” all the fuckin’ time!

  • ballin

    did somebody say rondo? i’m a celtics fan, but honestly, the dude is a bitch. every time he gets touched he lays on the floor for a minute or two. that’s not a joke…

    yeah, he gets fouled fairly hard/often but so do a lot of other players who just get right back up. the difference is, rondo milks the crowd by laying on the floor for a while (maybe to give the impression that he’s getting hit harder than he really is, in some bizarre attempt to actually SEEM like a tough guy when he goes and plays the rest of the game??)

    big baby gets a concussion and tries to run down the court to keep playing (lol) and would’ve fallen over if a ref didn’t catch him. if that had been rondo, people would’ve been getting the stretchers out…

  • Simon

    I just listened to that song and instantly thought NO LIMIT UGHHHHHHH! Honestly, I need to add Master P just screaming on this track.

  • http://dimemag.com Austin Burton

    @vince — You’re entitled to your opinion, but there’s like 10 or 12 Ice Cube sounds I would’ve picked before that one:

    Ghetto Bird
    Steady Mobbin
    Bow Down (WC)
    Jack N The Box
    Go To Church
    Child Support
    Pushin Weight
    Cold Places
    We Had To Tear This MF Up
    Late Night Hour
    Summer Vacation
    Here He Come
    When Will They Shoot?

  • barons beard

    worst. list. ever

  • Alee-Mo

    You can’t say corny shit like “worst.list.ever” and not come up with your own.

  • me

    can ppl PLEASE stop acting like amare is anything more than an arrogant underacheiver? I’m tired of Overpaid, lazy ass players like him fucking up the league. Dude is barely a shadow of what he could have been if he had someone pushing him to get better instead of yes men around him.

  • Chise

    Dwyane Wade.

  • ay yo..

    How is Maggette not top 10?

    All he does is throw is body into people, and walk to the line.

    Melo should be higher too. His post game is nasty, and dude takes so many fouls, finishes & never gets the call. The only superstar who doesn’t get the treatment.

  • abcdef

    this is an absolutely ridiculous list if wade is not on there.

    what a terrible list.
    never again

  • Guitar Hero

    Iverson, Wade, and of course SHAQ. Geriatric Shaq…still.

    Of course Amare belongs on the list. He´s unstoppable in the paint – offensively, of course.

    Yeah, Bogut as well…he´s one mean SOB. Not very aussie…

  • http://clutchfans.net Robb

    Yao neva got respect for his game.. The Sh** he takes “In Da Paint” is no joke, i think in comparison to the rest of the league, Yao only gets about 45% of foul calls, compared to the same situations for other players… He goes hard as anybody, but just because he so big nobody respects what he does..

  • Ekstor

    Amare shouldn’t be here… and I don’t get the article stating he’s a smarter player today. I think he has a more well-rounded offensive game, but smarter? No.

    Wade should have been on the list. Few perimeter players strike more fear in a defense than Wade.

    The other player I think about who’s tough in the paint is Carl Landry.