Let’s just be honest: Rick Barry is one of the most disliked player in NBA history. He doesn't quite make the Bill Laimbeer/Isaiah Thomas tier but he was roundly disliked, including by many of his own teammates.
No one doubted his talent however.
Barry was a brilliant basketball player. At 6-7, he played small forward - this was primarily in the ‘70s remember - but would probably play guard today. He had the range and the passing chops to easily pull it off.
Barry was abrasive and certainly had a very healthy ego. He always spoke his mind and didn’t have any problem telling you just what he thought.
When he played though, he was tremendous. His ferocity and high standards made him sort of a precursor for Larry Bird who came on the scene at the very end of his career.
And in 1975, Barry led a somewhat average Golden State team, including former Blue Devil Jeff Mullins, to the NBA Finals against the Washington Bullets (now Wizards).
Washington had won 60 games to Golden State’s 48 but it didn’t matter. Everything clicked as Barry and the Warriors sprinted past Washington for a four-game sweep.
Like Thomas, Barry’s reputation suffers some because he was so widely disliked. There is no denying the talent though as you’ll see in this clip from Game 3 of the 1975 NBA Finals.