This hypothetical scenario is nothing new or an original thought of mine. If you need a frame of reference, picture the movie "Space Jam". Imagine a group of incredibly skilled and athletic aliens came down from space threatening earth. The only way to save the human race; a seven-game series of basketball. NBA length and rules. Games called by NBA refs.
A little childish? Maybe. But it sets up an interesting debate. Who would we put on that team? It's a much different and more difficult question than simply the best 12-15 players of all time. You have to consider personalities, team play, and different specialties of players. Once again, this is not a list of the best 12 players of all time.
Here's how we'll set it up. Just like an NBA roster, there will be 15 players—12 active and 3 reserves—who could be activated in case someone in the top 12 got hurt. The team will be broken down by a starting five and then a sixth man through 12th man. Consider that the way most teams are built there is a sixth man and then the remainder of the bench consists of role players, there's really no such thing as a "ninth man". For the sake of this slideshow I will name bench players seventh man, eighth man, etc. simply to project what I feel their minutes should look like.
If you asked 50 people to design this team you'd probably get 50 different teams. Here's my take. Be sure to click on some of the links for highlights.
Note: When taking a player I will take them at what I consider to be their 3-year peak. That's where the stats will come from in case they seem a little off to you.