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How Shawn Marion Transformed His Career

DALLAS, TX - JUNE 09:  Shawn Marion #0 of the Dallas Mavericks celebrates after the Mavericks defeated the Miami Heat 112-103 in Game Five of the 2011 NBA Finals at American Airlines Center on June 9, 2011 in Dallas, Texas.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
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Mark EvansCorrespondent IIIAugust 31, 2011

Remember when Shawn Marion was "The Matrix?"

You know, when he was on the Phoenix Suns, putting up 20 points, 10 rebounds, a couple steals and some blocks every game. In the Suns' system, Marion was the ultimate stat machine. He filled every part of the stat sheet.

He was a superstar. Do you think he would go back if he could?

I doubt it very seriously.

Why?

Well, he's an NBA champion.

Watching Marion play now, he is a far cry from the player he used to be. It's not that he's washed up at all, though. He is more of a team player, one who focuses more on locking down defensively and getting to the hoop instead of relying on a jump shot.

He also realizes that he is no longer an elite player. And we saw him to defer to Dirk Nowitzki this past season. That's hard for a former star player to do.

Don't get me wrong, Marion is not a scrub, although he is out of his prime. He averaged 13 points and seven rebounds this past season while also being assigned the task of guarding the other team's best perimeter player for much of the game.

And at 33, Marion was up to the challenge.

The way he changed his game to adapt to his older age and diminishing skill is admirable. There are many players who have too much of an ego to accept that they are not what they used to be.

And he was rewarded for it.

With a ring.

 

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