Andre Iguodala Names The Smartest Player He Ever Played With
- Andre Iguodala has played for 19 seasons in the NBA
- Iguodala has played with some pretty smart players in that time
- His pick for the smartest of the lot was a bit of a surprise
Andre Iguodala has played with many great players during his time in the NBA like Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, Allen Iverson, and Jimmy Butler. None of them get the title of the smartest player that the 39-year-old ever played alongside, though, as he revealed it is Andre Miller on The Old Man and the Three podcast.
“Andre Miller taught me so much,” Iguodala said. “He was soft-spoken, didn’t say much, so when he spoke it was funny because he had a different type of voice… On the court, he would always ask me, ‘What you see?’ and I’m like year 3-4 so I see things, but not on his level, or not like to the level I see things now. Now I can be like do this do that, I can pick the game apart, it’s easy.
Miller’s questions led Iguodala to watch more game films to have a deeper understanding of what was going on.
“Back then, I’m still learning and I can’t answer this question, ‘Man, I don’t know what you see.’ But the more he asked me, the more I would go back and watch film,” Iguodala continued. “I’m gonna have an answer for him every time he asks me what do I see?”
Miller and Iguodala first became teammates during the 2006-07 season, when Miller was traded to the Philadelphia 76ers by the Denver Nuggets. It was Iguodala’s third season in the league, and he learned a lot from the veteran.
They’d spent two and a half seasons together, and those were some of Iguodala’s best years in the NBA. All three of his highest-scoring seasons came alongside Miller, who departed for the Portland Trail Blazers in 2009. They’d actually be reunited for one final season in 2012-13 on the Nuggets before Iguodala joined the Golden State Warriors.
Andre Miller’s NBA Career
Andre Miller played 17 seasons in the NBA and while he was never a star, he was a very good player for a long time. This was despite him being a relatively poor outside shooter and athlete, but he got an edge over his opponents with his mind.
For his career, Miller averaged 12.5 points, 3.7 rebounds, 6.5 assists, 1.2 steals, and 0.2 blocks per game. The highlight of his time in the NBA came in the 2001-02 season with the Cleveland Cavaliers, when he led the league in assists with 10.9 per game. He retired in 2016 and currently ranks 12th in the all-time assists list with 8,524.
For someone as smart as Miller, getting into coaching seemed almost a given post-retirement. In 2022, the Nuggets hired him as head coach of their G League Affiliate, Grand Rapids Gold, and perhaps one day, he might get a head coaching job in the NBA.
Evan Turner Picked Rajon Rondo
Evan Turner was with Iguodala on this episode and his pick for the smartest player he played with, was Rajon Rondo. The two only played together for half a season in 2014-15, but Rondo made quite an impression in that short time (starts at the 2:35 mark).
“He went viral just a couple of weeks ago, but I played with Rondo for like half a season,” Turner said. “And it was a unique experience but literally when you look at it, he was always preparing. Rondo was a know-it-all, but he really knew everything.”
He did go viral following comments he made on JJ Redick’s podcast. Rondo revealed how he outcoached Brad Stevens during the 2017 NBA playoffs. He believed he could affect the game more with his intellect than Stevens could from the sidelines, and he did for two games.
Rondo helped the eight-seeded Chicago Bulls take a 2-0 lead against the top-seeded Boston Celtics in a massive shock. He broke his thumb in Game 2, though, and the Celtics won the next four games in his absence.