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ESPN Ranks All-Time Greatest NBA Players By Position

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  • ESPN has been unveiling their all-time top 10 players by position. Makes for a good discussion. What do you guys think? Here are there lists:

    PG's:
    1. Magic Johnson
    2. Oscar Robertson
    3. Stockton
    4. Stephen Curry
    5. Isiah Thomas
    6. Chris Paul
    7. Steve Nash
    8. Jason Kidd
    9. Walt Fraizer
    10. Bob Cousy

    SG's:
    1. MJ
    2. Kobe Bryant
    3. Jerry West
    4. Dwyane Wade
    5. Clyde Drexler
    6. Allen Iverson
    7. George Gervin
    8. Ray Allen
    9. Reggie Miller
    10. Earl Monroe

    SF's:
    1. LeBron
    2. Larry Bird
    3. Dr. J
    4. Kevin Durant
    5. Elgin Baylor
    6. Scottie Pippen
    7. John Havlicek
    8. Rick Barry
    9. James Worthy
    10. Dominique Wilkins

    PF's:
    1. Tim Duncan
    2. Karl Malone
    3. Dirk Nowitzki
    4. Charles Barkley
    5. Kevin Garnett
    6. Kevin McHale
    7. Bob Pettit
    8. Elvin Hayes
    9. Pau Gasol
    10. Dennis Rodman

    Center position rankings come out tomorrow. Lists look pretty good, but obviously there are some flaws. The one major thing that jumps out to me is no Gary Payton? I don't see how you can have Chris Paul and Curry on there, and not Payton. If Paul and Curry were to retire today, neither would be remembered as top 10 PG's. And no way Paul should be higher than Kidd, Cousey, Frazier or even Nash. Pau Gasol as a top 10 PF surprised me a little, but he has had a real nice career.

    Here are the actual links to the espn rankings articles:

    http://espn.go.com/nba/story/_/page/nba ... uards-ever
    http://espn.go.com/nba/story/_/page/nba ... uards-ever
    http://espn.go.com/nba/story/_/page/nba ... wards-ever
    http://espn.go.com/nba/story/_/page/nba ... ba-history
    Hawk-Lock
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  • Agree with you on Curry and The Glove. Total BS he's not on that list. Take him by a country mile over Kidd, Curry, and maybe take him over Nash. Cousy is rated too low. First great distributor ever. They got the top 2 right though. Agree with the top 3 SGs, top 3 SFs.

    Elgin Baylor was not a small forward. He was a power forward and should be 2nd or 3rd on the list for that position IMO. I guess I'd put him behind Malone but definitely ahead of Nowitzki.

    As for centers, the top 3 seem pretty obvious, Kareem, Russell and Wilt. After that, we'll see. Will be interesting to see if Walton makes it. Best all around center to play the game IMO when healthy. Obviously though, that was basically the first 2 years of his career. Suppose Willis Reed will be in there, maybe Nate Thurmond.
    hawksfansinceday1
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  • Sean Kemp could've been on the list if he hadn't sucummed to partying and THE BLOAT. With both guys at their peak, he was winning battles against Karl Malone--who is on the list.
    Lords of Scythia
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  • http://espn.go.com/nba/story/_/page/nba ... ba-history

    Center rankings are out now.

    1. Kareem
    2. Wilt
    3. Russell
    4. Shaq
    5. Olajuwon
    6. Moses Malone
    7. David Robinson
    8. Ewing
    9. Mikan
    10. Walton

    Probably the most loaded position of the five. Probably one of the best debates is who was the best between Kareem, Wilt and Russell. I think they got the right 10 centers for this list.
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  • Nice to see drexler get some recognition. Gotta wonder where sabonis would be on that center list if he had come to the NBA before his body broke down. He'd probably be up near the top.
    JSeahawks
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  • I want to put GP in there but I can't see where to put him, I'd probably take him over Steve Nash honestly.
    Throwdown
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  • Throwdown wrote:I want to put GP in there but I can't see where to put him, I'd probably take him over Steve Nash honestly.


    Well over Chris Paul for sure. What has cp3 done in his career that is so great? I think up until last year he never won a playoff series.
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  • Hawk-Lock wrote:http://espn.go.com/nba/story/_/page/nbarankCs/ranking-greatest-centers-nba-history

    Center rankings are out now.

    1. Kareem
    2. Wilt
    3. Russell
    4. Shaq
    5. Olajuwon
    6. Moses Malone
    7. David Robinson
    8. Ewing
    9. Mikan
    10. Walton

    Probably the most loaded position of the five. Probably one of the best debates is who was the best between Kareem, Wilt and Russell. I think they got the right 10 centers for this list.

    Yeah I might change the order here and there but no quibble with any of those.
    hawksfansinceday1
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  • Hawk-Lock wrote:http://espn.go.com/nba/story/_/page/nbarankCs/ranking-greatest-centers-nba-history

    Center rankings are out now.

    1. Kareem
    2. Wilt
    3. Russell
    4. Shaq
    5. Olajuwon
    6. Moses Malone
    7. David Robinson
    8. Ewing
    9. Mikan
    10. Walton

    Probably the most loaded position of the five. Probably one of the best debates is who was the best between Kareem, Wilt and Russell. I think they got the right 10 centers for this list.


    How is the best basketball player of all time #2 on this list?
    fenderbender123
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  • fenderbender123 wrote:
    Hawk-Lock wrote:http://espn.go.com/nba/story/_/page/nbarankCs/ranking-greatest-centers-nba-history

    Center rankings are out now.

    1. Kareem
    2. Wilt
    3. Russell
    4. Shaq
    5. Olajuwon
    6. Moses Malone
    7. David Robinson
    8. Ewing
    9. Mikan
    10. Walton

    Probably the most loaded position of the five. Probably one of the best debates is who was the best between Kareem, Wilt and Russell. I think they got the right 10 centers for this list.


    How is the best basketball player of all time #2 on this list?


    It's considered one of the best sports debates, who the greatest center of all time is.....

    Plenty of people can make cases for each one being the greatest. Didn't Russell own Chamberlin? I know the Celtics were unstoppable, but you have to credit him for those rings.
    Hawk-Lock
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  • Hawk-Lock wrote:
    fenderbender123 wrote:
    Hawk-Lock wrote:http://espn.go.com/nba/story/_/page/nbarankCs/ranking-greatest-centers-nba-history

    Center rankings are out now.

    1. Kareem
    2. Wilt
    3. Russell
    4. Shaq
    5. Olajuwon
    6. Moses Malone
    7. David Robinson
    8. Ewing
    9. Mikan
    10. Walton

    Probably the most loaded position of the five. Probably one of the best debates is who was the best between Kareem, Wilt and Russell. I think they got the right 10 centers for this list.


    How is the best basketball player of all time #2 on this list?


    It's considered one of the best sports debates, who the greatest center of all time is.....

    Plenty of people can make cases for each one being the greatest. Didn't Russell own Chamberlin? I know the Celtics were unstoppable, but you have to credit him for those rings.

    The Celts usually owned Wilt's teams, but though Russell played him tough individually Wilt was the better player IMO.
    hawksfansinceday1
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  • Nobody owned Wilt,he didn't have a team of all stars like Bill..Kareem at 1?Wilt in his prime years destroys him.The version of Wilt on the Lakers was 37-38 yrs old and bad knees and he still was the only one who blocked that sky hook and more than a couple times.Espn is a joke,look where the have E Baylor..He was one player my dad always told me about when I would talk about Jordan.
    IndyHawk
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  • Throwdown wrote:I want to put GP in there but I can't see where to put him, I'd probably take him over Steve Nash honestly.


    He should be on there ahead of Jason Kidd for starters.
    Seanhawk
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  • Seanhawk wrote:
    Throwdown wrote:I want to put GP in there but I can't see where to put him, I'd probably take him over Steve Nash honestly.


    He should be on there ahead of Jason Kidd for starters.


    I would disagree there. As much as I love GP, Kidd had the better career. GP was obviously the better defender, but Kidd is considered one of the top 3 pure passers of all-time. Kidd is #3 all time in assists, GP is #9. Kidd is #2 all time in steals, GP is #4. Kidd is also #3 all-time in triple doubles with 107, that's pretty amazing. To put that in perspective, MJ only had 28 triple doubles in his entire career.

    GP ans Nash are close, but I still think Nash would get the nod. GP never won MVP's Nash did. There is no doubt that all the guys I've listed belong ahead of CP3 though.
    Hawk-Lock
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  • Hawk-Lock wrote:
    fenderbender123 wrote:
    Hawk-Lock wrote:http://espn.go.com/nba/story/_/page/nbarankCs/ranking-greatest-centers-nba-history

    Center rankings are out now.

    1. Kareem
    2. Wilt
    3. Russell
    4. Shaq
    5. Olajuwon
    6. Moses Malone
    7. David Robinson
    8. Ewing
    9. Mikan
    10. Walton

    Probably the most loaded position of the five. Probably one of the best debates is who was the best between Kareem, Wilt and Russell. I think they got the right 10 centers for this list.


    How is the best basketball player of all time #2 on this list?


    It's considered one of the best sports debates, who the greatest center of all time is.....

    Plenty of people can make cases for each one being the greatest. Didn't Russell own Chamberlin? I know the Celtics were unstoppable, but you have to credit him for those rings.


    I'm pretty sure the numbers showed that while Wilt did a little bit worse when playing against Russell, that he still won most of their face offs. In a lot of cases, it was Russell along with 1 or 2 extra guys defending Wilt rather than just Russell. And some people say that back then the officials let everyone smack and push Wilt around without calling any fouls.
    fenderbender123
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  • IndyHawk wrote:Nobody owned Wilt,he didn't have a team of all stars like Bill..Kareem at 1?Wilt in his prime years destroys him.The version of Wilt on the Lakers was 37-38 yrs old and bad knees and he still was the only one who blocked that sky hook and more than a couple times.Espn is a joke,look where the have E Baylor..He was one player my dad always told me about when I would talk about Jordan.


    Agree with 100% of this. Baylor is an incredibly underrated NBA player, even though he is still ranked pretty high.
    fenderbender123
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  • I think Shaq has to be the #1 center. Wilt Chamberlain is the only other guy on the list who could physically dominate like Shaq did, and Chamberlain did it in a much weaker era. Shaq was also unique in how he elevated two different teams to championship status.

    As great as Magic was, I never think of his as a PG. He was to PG what Jeter was to SS.

    Not having Payton on the list must have been a brainfart on their part. He's clearly one of the best PG of all time, just a hair behind Stockton.
    kearly
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  • You're right about the era, Kearly. But Shaq didn't put up the numbers that Wilt did, so Wilt dominated his era more than Shaq did his.

    I also believe that if Wilt played in a more difficult era, he would have been better. I think Wilt felt like the NBA was too easy for him.
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  • fenderbender123 wrote:You're right about the era, Kearly. But Shaq didn't put up the numbers that Wilt did, so Wilt dominated his era more than Shaq did his.

    I also believe that if Wilt played in a more difficult era, he would have been better. I think Wilt felt like the NBA was too easy for him.

    Wow I missed Kearly putting that fat Shaq in front of Wilt.I agree with Fender but I have to add some more.You think it's a weaker era?Less teams but those less teams had the best players spread among them unlike today the talent pool is spread too much since there is too many teams around and not enough talent so you got scrubs.Lebron has been on record saying the same thing.The rules are easier on the players than in Wilts era,they changed rules to make it harder on Wilt but did that work?Hardly..Shaq comes close to Wilt in size but Wilt was a beast.Taller,faster and stronger.Can you imagine as much as Wilt trained in his day what he would do with todays equipment,nutrition,training and the NBA's easier rules that Shaq had?He would absolutely dominate and there would be no one who could stop him.He had track speed,set records in high jump,his strength was of legendary stuff.You can find videos all over You tube to grasp some of this.I'm shocked at how many casually put this guy below anyone.He played from early 60's to 1974.I started watching in
    1976 and Lew Alcindor was the next best so I'm trying to understand where are all these centers Wilt never played?Shaq
    didn't have very much competition who?Tim Duncan-who beat him,Hakeem?-who beat him,The Worm-who beat him and those three were smaller and nowhere near Wilt.I respect your posts and opinions but I think your wrong in this case.
    IndyHawk
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  • IndyHawk wrote:
    fenderbender123 wrote:You're right about the era, Kearly. But Shaq didn't put up the numbers that Wilt did, so Wilt dominated his era more than Shaq did his.

    I also believe that if Wilt played in a more difficult era, he would have been better. I think Wilt felt like the NBA was too easy for him.

    Wow I missed Kearly putting that fat Shaq in front of Wilt.I agree with Fender but I have to add some more.You think it's a weaker era?Less teams but those less teams had the best players spread among them unlike today the talent pool is spread too much since there is too many teams around and not enough talent so you got scrubs.Lebron has been on record saying the same thing.The rules are easier on the players than in Wilts era,they changed rules to make it harder on Wilt but did that work?Hardly..Shaq comes close to Wilt in size but Wilt was a beast.Taller,faster and stronger.Can you imagine as much as Wilt trained in his day what he would do with todays equipment,nutrition,training and the NBA's easier rules that Shaq had?He would absolutely dominate and there would be no one who could stop him.He had track speed,set records in high jump,his strength was of legendary stuff.You can find videos all over You tube to grasp some of this.I'm shocked at how many casually put this guy below anyone.He played from early 60's to 1974.I started watching in
    1976 and Lew Alcindor was the next best so I'm trying to understand where are all these centers Wilt never played?Shaq
    didn't have very much competition who?Tim Duncan-who beat him,Hakeem?-who beat him,The Worm-who beat him and those three were smaller and nowhere near Wilt.I respect your posts and opinions but I think your wrong in this case.


    And if that's not enough to change anyone's mind, let's also add the fact that Wilt averaged 45.8 minutes per game throughout his entire career. Shaq? 34.7.
    fenderbender123
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  • fenderbender123 wrote:
    IndyHawk wrote:
    fenderbender123 wrote:You're right about the era, Kearly. But Shaq didn't put up the numbers that Wilt did, so Wilt dominated his era more than Shaq did his.

    I also believe that if Wilt played in a more difficult era, he would have been better. I think Wilt felt like the NBA was too easy for him.

    Wow I missed Kearly putting that fat Shaq in front of Wilt.I agree with Fender but I have to add some more.You think it's a weaker era?Less teams but those less teams had the best players spread among them unlike today the talent pool is spread too much since there is too many teams around and not enough talent so you got scrubs.Lebron has been on record saying the same thing.The rules are easier on the players than in Wilts era,they changed rules to make it harder on Wilt but did that work?Hardly..Shaq comes close to Wilt in size but Wilt was a beast.Taller,faster and stronger.Can you imagine as much as Wilt trained in his day what he would do with todays equipment,nutrition,training and the NBA's easier rules that Shaq had?He would absolutely dominate and there would be no one who could stop him.He had track speed,set records in high jump,his strength was of legendary stuff.You can find videos all over You tube to grasp some of this.I'm shocked at how many casually put this guy below anyone.He played from early 60's to 1974.I started watching in
    1976 and Lew Alcindor was the next best so I'm trying to understand where are all these centers Wilt never played?Shaq
    didn't have very much competition who?Tim Duncan-who beat him,Hakeem?-who beat him,The Worm-who beat him and those three were smaller and nowhere near Wilt.I respect your posts and opinions but I think your wrong in this case.


    And if that's not enough to change anyone's mind, let's also add the fact that Wilt averaged 45.8 minutes per game throughout his entire career. Shaq? 34.7.

    Yeah and he never fouled out either I believe.Led the NBA in assists one year,a player for the ages.You'll never see again.
    IndyHawk
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