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The Future of the Planet Is on the Line: The All-Time Starting Five

The best ever
The best everJonathan Daniel/Getty Images
Jason PorterContributor IAugust 9, 2011

The game of basketball has produced many fantastic players. I want to get down to an all-time starting unit that could beat any other assemblage of five.  I am talking about picking the fellas that are going heads in a contest of which the outcome has the survival of the very planet at stake.

I will not read in anything like how someone dominated in their "era" or set up any other type of handicap to equalize the players. I am talking about a straight-up game with the legit, best five.

Ok, here goes:

At point guard I have "Magic" Johnson. Johnson's mix of size, quickness, and skill are unrivaled in the history of hoop for a 1. Do I even need to bring this next guy up, or does it go without saying?

At the 2 guard I have Michael Jordan. Not only the best guard in history, but the best player. I think Jordan would be on anyone's list of starters unless they were simply being ridiculous.

The next player to run through the line of players slapping five after the starting intros is small forward Larry Bird. Bird may have the greatest skill with a ball of anyone who has ever lived. His hand/eye coordination was just freakish.

My power forward really played center most of the time, but I want someone else towering alongside him around the basket. My pick for this spot is Hakeem Olajuwon. "The Dream" was unstoppable. The "Dream Shake" broke ankles. No one wanted to, or could, defend him. He was equally as efficient on defense.

This next player may cause the most fuss, but I think he was simply too dominating. Shaquille O'Neal would patrol the paint on my starting team.  The size and athletic ability of Shaq were just too much to handle. Shaq playing alongside these other greats would produce an absolute dunk fest.

So, there it is. Planet Earth—or any other planet—would be safe if this group of players took on any five placed on the court.

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