Across playgrounds and recreation centers in America, one move reigns supreme (if executed properly) as the King of Ankle-Breakers: The Shammgod. The origins of said move are traced to a certain God Shammgod (Shammgod Wells) out of New York City. There has been much debate recently as to who has the better handles: Stephen Curry or Kyrie Irving. That debate will wage on as long as those two mercurial Point Guard’s are destroying defenders left and right. However, amongst basketball circles, God Shammgod’s handles are second to none. As Kenny Smith and Steve Smith put it on NBA TV’s Open Court, Shammgod arguably had the best handles in NBA History. That speaks volumes for a guy who only lasted 2 years in the Association. The fact that many of the League’s elite ball-handlers continuously use his moves (Chris Paul and Manu Ginobili included) only adds to his legend.
Shammgod may not have had the NBA career that he and many others envisioned him having, he has been credited as the man who made Kobe Bryant and Allen Iverson’s handles nearly unstoppable in their primes. Shammgod pulled off the most intricate and seemingly illegal of playground moves off in College, NBA and Overseas Games.
To think that Shammgod is considered the best ball handler to come out of a city that’s produced legends like Tiny Archibald, Dwayne “Pearl” Washington, Kenny Anderson and Stephon Marbury to name a few?? Simply insane. Thanks to Youtube we have some footage of what God Shammgod was able to do on the court. Recently, he was an instrumental figure in the development of fellow Providence guards Bryce Cotton & Kris Dunn.
My favorite aspect of Shammgod’s game was his ability to have quick counter moves to the defense’s response to his initial move. His tight spin moves were elite, as were the moves he used to escape out of trouble. He always kept a low center of gravity, which for a ball-handler, makes it nearly impossible for the ball to be taken from you or for defenders to stay in front of you. The Following video has footage from God Shammgod’s playing days in Poland (contains NSFW Language).