The 10 Best NBA Draft Steals in the Past 25 Years

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The 10 Best NBA Draft Steals in the Past 25 Years
Stephen Dunn/Getty Images
Manu Ginobili was drafted with the 57th pick in the 1999 draft.

There are three ways to acquire elite talent in the NBA. Teams can either acquire a star player from another team via trade, sign a talented player as a free agent or they can position themselves to be in the NBA draft lottery. However, occasionally there are exceptions to this rule when teams find hidden gems late in the draft. 

Marc Gasol, last year's Defensive Player of the Year, was selected 48th overall in 2007.

The San Antonio Spurs built a dynasty by drafting Tim Duncan with the first pick in the 1997 draft, then selecting Manu Ginobili (57th in the 1999 draft) and Tony Parker (28th in the 2001 draft). 

When considering the past 25 years of the NBA, there has been at least one major steal in almost every draft. 

A player doesn't have to have been drafted late in the second round to be considered a steal. A very productive player like Parker, who was the last selection in the first round in 2001, was a steal. Where a player was chosen in the draft, longevity in the NBA, production and postseason success are all factors in determining how much of a steal a player is.

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