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Stephen A. Smith Slams NBA Players For Being Soft: “In Today’s NBA, We Got Guys Crying More Than Soap Opera Stars.”

Stephen A. Smith Slams NBA Players For Being Soft: “In Today’s NBA, We Got Guys Crying More Than Soap Opera Stars.”

One of the biggest complaints levied against the modern NBA players is their lack of toughness. Because the NBA began penalizing players for trying to play a more physical brand of basketball, the game has become less violent.

As a result, many believe that the players of today would not be able to survive in the previous era, as they would lack the physical and mental toughness to be able to go up against those NBA teams.

Stephen A. Smith has added to that narrative, calling the players out for complaining about excessive physicality.

During the pre-game discussion ahead of Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Finals, Jalen Rose called on Jayson Tatum to not look to the referees and complain about the Miami Heat's physicality. Stephen A. Smith responded by saying that NBA players today cry more than soap opera stars (4:07 onwards):

Jalen Rose: “Heat culture is that physicality we talked about. Them playing as a football game. That means the Celtics gotta stop crying to the refs. In particular, Jayson Tatum, he did a lot of looking at the refs. You gotta play through the physicality of the Miami Heat…”

Stephen A. Smith: “In today’s NBA, we got guys crying more than soap opera stars, so I dont know how you just make that proclamation.”

Stephen A. Smith has been regularly critical of modern NBA players when it comes to this. Since the NBA took a more offense-first approach to the game, the physicality that players could exhibit on the defensive end has been limited significantly, something Smith is not happy about.

The Miami Heat are one of the most physical teams in the league, but they are able to play and exercise that physicality well within the limit of the game. But clearly, Smith thinks the lack of physicality is a league-wide issue and not just pertaining to a few teams.