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Don't think Larry Bird is Top-5 All-Time? His overall skill set gets him there.


For those skeptics who feel Larry Bird should not be rated Top-5 All-Time, I present the following from September 20, 2020 (per The Sacramento Bee's Joe Davidson):

OUR ALL-TIME NBA STARTING 5, PLUS A FEW MORE

If I’m picking an all-time NBA starting lineup, here’s who I hit the floor with:

Point guard: Magic Johnson — The ultimate floor leader, ball handler, passer, leader, personality and champion. Magic led the Lakers to nine NBA Finals, winning five. He could play any position.

Shooting guard: Michael Jordan — Relentless in scoring, in defending, in leadership and winning. Jordan and the Chicago Bulls went 6-0 in the NBA Finals while owning the 1990s.

Small forward: LeBron James — Ageless, timeless, relentless. James at 35 can score inside and out, handle the ball, finish with the ball, and has his third team in the Finals.

Power forward: Larry Bird — Yes, he could also play small forward, and James would be seamless at power forward, but in this game, just unleash your five best and go with it. The former Boston Celtics star’s overall skill set and drive is as good as anyone has ever witnessed.

Center: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar — Graceful and skilled, Kareem could run, rebound, set off the break with outlet passes and he could score. Man, could he score, finishing as the NBA’s all-time most prolific performer, punctuated by the never-duplicated hook shot.

Sixth man: Tim Duncan — Smooth, efficient, effective, bright. The Big Fundamental, who led the San Antonio Spurs to five titles, would fit in nicely here.

And one more: Dennis Rodman — Never mind the antics. Every team needs a ferocious stopper and rebounder. The Worm qualifies.

Despite the omission of Bill Russell for the top center spot, I really can't argue with any of this. You may hate Lebron James as a person, but he belongs here. Magic and MJ ate "givens" in the back court, and I have no argument with Tim Duncan as sixth man.

Dennis Rodman? Does he belong here? Maybe not, but he was such a pest as a Celtics opponent, I have to give this some credibility. What do our readers think.

Oh, and Larry? "Overall skill set and drive is as good as anyone has ever witnessed." What did Red Auerbach think of his 6'9" power forward?  

“Plays all parts of the game better than anyone who ever lived.”

That's good enough for me!

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