They’ve certainly become a lesser part of NBA offense. Now, the reason. I think there’s multiple reasons.
Most kids growing up don’t want to play in there. It’s not a lot of fun. There’s a lot of contact. You’re not handling the ball. You’re not getting to shoot it with range. That’s number one.
The other reason, there’s just not enough people feeding into the NBA who are low post players who want to do that work.
It’s always been a defended position. A guard can just sort of get the ball and get himself a shot. A center needs his teammates to bring the ball down into him.
Passing as a skill really hasn’t gotten much better. A lot of coaches actually think it’s gotten worse, and so that makes it harder to get guys the ball. Certainly the defensive rules have allowed us to do things that we previously couldn’t do to make it harder on post people.
I mean, you can front the post and bring another guy over behind him. You could never do that kind of stuff before. Certainly the rules have contributed to that. And I also think, you combine the rules with now, how are you still going to be able to get the ball inside because you don’t have a rule that artificially gets your post guy some room?
That’s also led to putting more shooting on the floor, and teams playing smaller, because the only way now to prevent teams from doing those kinds of things is to put enough shooting on the floor to get those guys space.