Throughout the history of the NBA, there have been many great players from various eras, coming in all shapes and sizes from towering goliaths such as Wilt Chamberlain and Shaquille O’Neal to miniature warriors such as Allen Iverson and Isiah Thomas. These legends have helped make the game the successful global phenomenon it is today.
The rules have vastly changed over the duration of the league, from the widening of the lane to no hand checking, and having a safe place to land. With the spacing of today’s game and players and teams shooting more threes than ever before, as well as the fast pace of play, which former legends would dominate today’s wide-open NBA?
In this article, I will be going through a select few of the many legends who I feel would dominate today’s game.
NBA Superstar #4: Kevin Garnett
Kevin Garnett joined the NBA straight out of high school and spent his prime years with the Minnesota Timberwolves and the Boston Celtics, where he won his only championship in 2008. On both ends of the court, the abrasive Garnett was as loud and intense as they come.
His versatility and switchability helped revolutionize the power forward position due to his ability as a near 7-footer who could apply full-court pressure on point guards coming up the court. Offensively, he had a beautiful mid-range game and the ability to create off the bounce.
Garnett averaged over 20 points and 10 rebounds per game for nine straight seasons from 1998-2007. He was simply a two-way wrecking ball who contributed to winning basketball, peaking at 18.3 win shares in his MVP season in 2004 when he had a PER of 29.4 according to Basketball Reference.
If Garnett played in today’s game, with more spacing and shot opportunities, imagine how much more dangerous he would be if he actually focused on improving his three-point shot. Or could you imagine the otherworldly versatility on the defensive end that a prime Garnett would have displayed, similar to Evan Mobley, Anthony Davis, or Giannis Antetokounmpo today, but on steroids and with provocative emotion? Yeah, sign me up!