Let’s suppose for one second that the plot of Space Jam could come true. A race of super basketball playing aliens has come down from the heavens and challenged us earthlings to a game of hoops. Thanks to their advanced technology, they allow humans to pick a team of NBA superstars in their primes. This includes players living or dead, active or retired. Placed in charge of creating this uber-team, here is what we came up with for the 12-man roster.
PG- Magic Johnson: The NBA’s all-time leader in assists per game with 11.19, Johnson was the obvious pick because of his amazing versatility. He could famously play all five positions on the floor, and do so fairly well. How many 6’8 point guards do you see today?
SG- Michael Jordan: The easiest pick on the roster. Jordan is hands down, the greatest player in NBA history. The league’s all-time leader in Player Efficiency Rating, Jordan averaged a whopping 30.1 points per game for his career. Led the NBA in win shares nine times.
SF- Larry Bird: One of the greatest shooters ever, Bird really could lead a team on both ends of the floor. He finished in the top 10 in Defensive Rating five times in his 13 year NBA career, and led the league in Defensive Win Shares four times. Oh, and he was an offensive guru who could score from just about anywhere on the floor.
PF- Karl Malone: Durability is the main reason Malone gets the start. He’s fourth all-time in games played with 1476, and he played in all 82 contests an amazing 10 times. Malone has made (and taken) more free throws than anyone in the history of the NBA, and has pulled down the most defensive boards as well.
C- Wilt Chamberlain: One of the most gifted players ever, in terms of both offense and defense. Was a member of the All-NBA team nine times, and a member of the NBA All-Defensive First Team twice. Oh, and he once scored 100 points in a game. That helps too.
6. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (C)
7. Moses Malone (F)
8. John Stockton (PG)
9. John Havlicek (G/F)
10. Kobe Bryant (G)
11. Jerry West (PG)
12. Tim Duncan (PF)
HEAD COACH: Phil Jackson