All-Time NBA


Okay, even though I have historically been a basketball nut, over the past several years my interest has gradually waned. But I am glad I was watching last night when LeBron hit THE SHOT.

He is simply amazing.

I got to thinking today that, in my opinion, the current NBA showcases some of the best players in the history of the sport of basketball.

Here is my take on whom I would pick if given the opportunity to pick an all-time team with a back-up at each position. (Note: picture each player at his prime.)

* Point Guard: LeBron James (backup – Magic Johnson)
* Shooting Guard: Michael Jordan (backup – Oscar Robertson)
* Small Forward: Larry Bird (backup – Kobe Bryant)
* Power Forward: Tim Duncan (backup – Kevin Garnett)
* Center: Shaquille O’Neal (backup, and on the floor at free throw time – Yao Ming)

I’d also let Rick Barry on the team for shooting technical free throws, and Pete Maravich just for entertaining ballhandling exhibitions.

It did surprise me, which prompted this post, that there were so many current players on my all-time team.


11 Responses to “All-Time NBA”

  1. urbino Says:

    I know much less about basketball than you do, and even if I didn’t it would probably be tough to quibble with those picks. Except at center. I think Kareem was better than either of your picks, and Bill Russell was probably better than Kareem.

    Also, is the game LeBron plays really the same game that Maravich or, say, Bob Cousy played? Most centers were probably about LeBron’s (or Magic’s) size, and few of them were coordinated enough to tie their own shoes, much less bring the ball up the floor.

  2. alsturgeon Says:

    To LeBron: No. Not the same game at all. But I would love to see Cousy try to defend LeBron, and more so, see his eyes when he turned to bring the ball up the floor and saw LeBron defending him. 🙂

    To Center: I felt funny(iest) about my center picks. There’s Chamberlain, but Shaq is Wilt, wider. Also thought of Russell and Kareem, but probably longest about Olajuwon – he’s probably the best all-around center of all-time.

    * Russell: too short to be center on the all-time team. My rule is that you have to be taller than your point guard. 🙂 He did a good job neutralizing Wilt, but he could only win because he had a better surrounding cast. Shaq would (literally) kill Russell, and Yao is a foot taller. I think Russell is a better fit at power forward, but there you’ve got guys that can shoot/score, too, which Russell couldn’t do.

    * Kareem: good argument there. Just too one-dimensional for me on the all-time list. Very good argument to displace Yao as the back-up, but I’m just way too impressed w/Yao’s all-around skills.

    Again, Olajuwon is the best all-around I think. But Shaq and Yao both have such freakish qualities that I just had to go with them. Shaq is an amazing creature to have on both ends of the court. He CAN score; he just can’t shoot. And on a team with Bird/Jordan/LeBron/Duncan on the floor, to have this massive human being in the post is just the best combination I think.

    To Yao: my imagination tells me that bringing Shaq off the floor to the relief of any unfortunate opposition only to replace him with someone even taller and with skills would just be the greatest resource imaginable on the bench.

    Just my thoughts.

  3. michaellasley Says:

    Well….I can’t argue one way or the other. I know not the first thing about the NBA. I’ve watched a total of maybe 12 minutes ever. I can’t even get into the playoffs this year, which by all accounts are pretty good.

  4. alsturgeon Says:

    C’mon, you’re an L.A. guy now. I figured you slept with a poster of Kobe!

  5. michaellasley Says:

    I do.

    Even though I’m a ‘Melo fan! See….Carmelo and I used to lift together back at Syracuse…or something.

  6. alsturgeon Says:

    Ah, how could I forget? Glad to see Denver could win w/o ‘Melo contributing much last night!

  7. michaellasley Says:

    If you can imagine….I didn’t see the game, so I can’t comment on anything other than the numbers (I don’t know, for instance, if he was playing stellar D or not). But, yes…I’m glad they don’t have to have his points to win. I’m pulling for the Nuggets a) because of Melo and b) because Lakers fans are driving me CRAZY!

  8. alsturgeon Says:

    Actually, he had the stomach flu. Then tweaked his ankle. He looked like an old man during the game – sorta like me, now that I think about it. Me with a headband. And tats.

    But anyway, yeah, my rooting is driven by the anti-Laker fan motive, too. I told Jody last night that I wouldn’t mind Orlando winning the East, but only if Denver won the West. If not, I’d hate to hear all the Kobe disciples talking about how that would prove that he’s better than LeBron.

  9. urbino Says:

    I guess I’d like to see a Denver upset, too. Just because it’d be an upset. I do get very tired of the Laker love, but when it comes right down to it, I’m not sure I like either team much better than the other.

    Between Kobe and ‘Melo, there’s just not a huge difference on the dislikability front. (Sorry, Mikey.) I do like Derek Fisher a lot, but his minutes have diminished so much he doesn’t add as much likability as he once did. Can’t stand George Karl. Kenyon Martin ain’t exactly easy to love; neither is J.R. Smith. But I enjoy watching Chauncey Billups play, while Pau Gasol makes my eyes hurt.

    In the East, I’m rooting for the Cavs, mostly because it seems like LeBron could put together a career that eclipses even Jordan’s, and it’d be fun to see him get started on it. Besides, Orlando’s got all the appeal of an English muffin.

  10. alsturgeon Says:

    Yeah, I feel the same way about LeBron. Again, I wouldn’t mind Orlando beating them, but only if Denver beats L.A. Conversely, I wouldn’t mind L.A. beating Denver if Cleveland beat Orlando. I would enjoy it if LeBron could upstage Kobe in the Finals.

  11. urbino Says:

    Yeah, that would be sweet. I have a feeling it would go the other way, though, because the Lakers are so much more balanced than the Cavs. Seems like the Cavs are one of those teams where if you can stop the one star, the whole team breaks down.

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