To make these following slides, I took my time, looked at recent and old statistics and finally came out with what I would call the rightful top 10. We have outsiders and the obvious ones, but sooner or later it all comes down to who's at the top.
If you disagree, obviously that's fine, but just understand where I'm coming from with these picks.
With that said, enjoy.
I thought hard about this No. 10 spot, but decided to go for an underdog, an outsider, and indeed a surprise. If you watch Deng, no way do you think he should go in the top 10. Sometimes you wouldn't even rank Deng in the top 50! I don't put him in the top 10 because of the way I see him play, I put him here because of the so important market value. Remember when their was the Bulls-Lakers trade talk...the one that involved Bryant? The only player the Lakers would accept in this negotiating was Deng. And, to add more to it, he was the one player the Bulls never talked about while conversing with the Lakers, was Deng. That shows that teams, and coaches see something in him that we just can't put our finger on. Kobe even stated that he would just go to the Bulls if he was the MJ while Deng was his Pippen. Deng's stats haven't been great recently, but he may come on strong soon enough with his unseen potential.
This guy led the Magic to the third best record in the league. Every single time I look at Dwight's stats I feel obliged to move him a bit higher up the list. Howard is huge, 7'0", yet has a jump as high as Nate Robinson. He's so freakishly athletic and powerful, that when he dunks it or blocks it, it seems easy...which is one of the reasons he is sometimes overlooked.
Melo just has a knack for getting the ball in the hoop. Every teams wants a player who can take the scoring load like Melo, and they envy the Nuggets that way. Even when playing with the best of the best, the Olympics, Melo set himself up as their volume scorer.
Without injuries slowing him down, Wade could be in the top three, possible two. Wade is a spectacular player, relentless on the drive, has a good vision on the court, an underrated defender (huge amounts of steals and blocks), and is a great teammate. Wade led his team to the championship ring two years ago, and obviously still hasn't reached the peak of his career. Hopefully we see this great player develop, with no Grant Hill like setbacks.
Garnett was forgotten at many points in his career as the Wolves struggled to develop other players and were missing the postseason. Even when Garnett almost single-handedly took the Wolves to the conference finals or other rounds of the playoffs nobody really took notice. When he finally got traded to Boston, on a winning team, everyone took notice of his skill, hustle and determination to win...even though it had been there the whole time.
Mr. Fundamental? Not in the top four? Well, I just simply couldn't put him in front of the top four. He is the most ideal, "fundamental", post presence right now, his passes are accurate and skilled, and he shoots it off the glass with extreme precision. So you ask yourself, then how is he not in the top four? Straight up, he's been vulnerable by minor injuries in recent years. Though that has not stopped him from getting the rings, we are awaiting another x-ray to see how he's doing...in the top five it's things like that, that make all the difference.
First European prodigy star of the NBA, Dirk won the MVP two years ago while the season was ruined because his team couldn't get by the Warriors in the first round. That doesn't stop him from being the player you least want to match up against and defend. Over the past couple of seasons, Dirk has made his post game seem unstoppable with his crazy shooting touch. His defense has somewhat improved, but still has some space to grow in the future of this German superstar.
Nash is a sub-par defender, isn't a reliable scorer, not strong enough, and so on. If you look at all this you would think he is the opposite of what a good basketball player is meant to be. But then you remember that this is the guy who won back to back MVP awards, and led the Suns to become one of the top teams in the league. Nash is the perfect reincarnation of Magic Johnson...smaller, but possibly better.
LeBron "the King" James is just lights out amazing. He was the No. 1 pick in the draft, and was hyped as a high schooler to be a great pro. He not only achieved what was demanded, but became even better than expected. This guy is just phenomenal. He's as quick as anyone on the court, yet can compete with the bigger guys standing at 6'7". He's as athletic and muscular as anyone else in the league (except for Howard), so even if he wasn't as good of a dribbler as he is he'd be pretty hard to stop. He truly is "The Chosen One."
The space between him and some of the other All-Stars in the NBA is getting closer and closer, but for now Kobe is still No. 1. Although a lot of people dislike or even hate him. But, if they reflect on it, they just can't hate on his skills. When he feels like playing defense, he's a First Team defender. He is the best scorer in the league, sometimes making well defended and nearly impossible shots... also known as a "Kobe shot." First of all, you have to look at the statistics of everyone else on the roster. Then look at their record and their championship victory...that's how good Kobe is.