Thousands of little boys dream of growing up and becoming an NBA superstar, a basketball legend. Few dare to follow that dream, and even fewer actually accomplish it.
The Portland Trail Blazers have a rich history made possible by those little boys who defied the odds and rose to be among the team's elite core of athletes.
In this article we count down the top 25 greatest players in Portland Trail Blazers' history.
A key component to the Trail Blazers 1977 championship run. Not huge in any statistical category but a big enough asset the the team to have his number retired and hung from the rafters, an honor for the elite Trail Blazers.
Another important piece to the championship puzzle that won the 1977 NBA title.
Again, no significant numbers to brag about, but a player well worth mentioning.
Lionel Hollins during his Coaching Career
A solid passer who knew how to score and make the steal. In his four years as a Trail Blazer, Hollins made himself one of the all-time top guards in franchise history.
Buck Williams was a bull for the Portland Trail Blazers in the early '90s. His tenacious defense and rebounding helped the Blazers to the NBA Finals two out of three seasons.
Kevin Duckworth, the gentle giant, shored up the low post for the Trail Blazers during the late '80s and early '90s.
His large frame, and soft baby hook helped earn him two All-Star appearances in 1989 and 1991.
Jerome Kersey was a high flying forward that excelled in his running game. His ability to score, rebound and throw down thunderous dunks lead him to becoming one of the Blazers' all-time greats.
Brian Grant made his living under the basket as a hard nosed defender; afraid of no one.
His strong play helped endear him to Portland fans and made him among our top 20 all-time Trail Blazers' players.
Jim Paxson was known for his terrific shooting. Older brother to John Paxson, a member of the Chicago Bulls championship teams of the mid-'90s.
Clifford Robinson, an athletic forward for the Trail Blazers was originally a second-round sleeper who matured over a period of years into one of the most improved Blazers ever during that span.
LaMarcus Aldridge, currently playing for the Blazers, is an up-and-coming power forward who is just now beginning to put up big numbers for Portland.
His consistently good scoring and rebounding have helped make him a pillar for the current team.
Damon Stoudamire, or Mighty Mouse as he was called, was a fiery point guard who's bread and butter was passing and scoring.
Damon holds the Portland Trail Blazers all-time high mark for points scored in a game with 54.
Kiki Vandeweighe, a German born player, was a tremendous scoring threat during his years in Portland, putting up big numbers allowing him to rank among the team's best players.
Rasheed Wallace was a player that oozed talent. A big man who could score down low and from three-point range, as well as rebound and block shots.
His long arms helped him ward off opponents under the basket.
Z-Bo, as he as fondly called, was not the most athletic power forward one had ever seen. Nor was he the most gracefull. He would also never win a dunk contest.
So what earned Randolph the No. 12 spot in our countdown of the best Blazers ever?
Zack was a strong powerhouse down low that could and would often own the paint against softer opponents. He rose from a nobody in the NBA to a somebody with a very consistent and reliable game, night-in, night-out and regularly posted 20 points and 10 boards.
Lightening Rod Strickland wasn't a super shooter, or a big body, but his tiny frame and quick speed allowed him to knife his way between defenders and down the key.
There he could either pop up for a lay-in or kick out a pass to an open teammate. Rod Strickland still owns the Blazers' record with 20 assists in a single game.
Though Pippen's glory days came several years before his time in Portland (he won six NBA championships with the Chicago Bulls), he still is one of the most talented and biggest names ever to put on a Blazers' jersey.
The refined, multi-faceted game of Pippen (he could play any position from point guard to power forward) allowed the Trail Blazers' the versatility they needed to compete in the West during the late 1990s.
"Sabas," as he was called, joined the ranks of the Blazers' elite long after his prime had come to and end.
Coming to the NBA from Europe, Sabonis quickly adjusted to the American game by proving his worth with soft jump hooks, pin-point passing and long range marksmanship.
With a 7'3'' frame and tremendous rebounding and shot blocking ability, this big man could do it all, even down to the duties of your average point guard.
Thompson was a tenacious rebounder, great scorer and solid shot blocker for the Blazers in the 1980s.
His length and skill helped rank him among the top 10 Trail Blazers of all time.
Though Roy battled knee injuries long before he ever reached his prime, he still has been one of the biggest game changing players Portland has ever had.
Known for knocking down clutch shots in close games, Roy excels in pressure situations where he can utilize his killer crossover and sharp shooting to help Portland win games.
Left -- Maurice Lucas in His Later Years as Blazers' Ast. Coach
The Enforcer was a big bodied bull for the Blazers in the late 1970s. His rough style of play and in-your-face attitude helped push Portland to the NBA championship.
He later became an assistant coach for the Trail Blazers.
Averaging over twenty-one points per game and being a solid passer helped Geoff Petrie earn a spot among the top five Trail Blazers of all time.
Petrie was drafted No. 8 overall in the 1970 NBA draft, Portland's first draft as a professional ball club.
Wicks was a big time scorer and even bigger rebounder for Portland in his five seasons as a Blazer.
Drafted No. 2 overall in the 1971 NBA draft, Sidney Wicks quickly became one of the best players Portland ever had by being able to perform solidly in the three main categories of scoring, rebounding and passing.
Terry Porter ranks as the third best Blazer ever, and best point guard in franchise history.
Porter is No. 1 all-time with Portland in three-pointers and assists and was a clutch performer in many a game for the Blazers during their run to the NBA Finals in the early 1990s.
Porter has also been a recipient of the J. Walter Kennedy Citizenship award.
Big Red was the go-to guy during Portland's 1977 NBA championship season.
His scoring and rebounding abilities have lead him to being considered not only top two in Portland team history but among the NBA's all-time elite as well.
And the best player in Portland Trail Blazers' franchise history is none other than Clyde "The Glide" Drexler. Drexler averaged over 20 points per game in nearly every season with Portland.
His solid rebounding, passing, and stealing ability was rivaled only by Michael Jordan in the 1990s. Clyde was a gold medal winner in the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona.