Quantcast
Tuesday, June 2nd, 2009 at 4:17 pm  |  250 responses

SLAM 130: On Sale Now!

This time we picked the right #23.

by Tzvi Twersky

About eight Fridays ago, an editorial meeting took place at the SLAM Dome. The task at hand: creating a “50 Greatest Players of All-Time” list. Yeah, we’ve done it before, in both SLAM 19 and a special “Top 75” issue that came out in 2003, but a lot has changed since then. A whole generation of ball players—SLAM’s generation of players, really—has played enough seasons and collected enough stats to now be included in the “Top 50” convo. Da Kid, The Answer, Black Mamba—the list goes on. So when the opportunity to remix and remaster our lists of old arose, we just couldn’t resist the temptation.

Creating the concept was pretty easy, agreeing on the 50 was not. One Thursday afternoon, we sat around a conference room table for hours, poring over stats, ratios and all kinds of graphs. But, at the same time, we tried our best not to turn NBA greats into heaps of digits and equations. At day’s end, throats sore from arguing players’ cases, I think we managed to keep our respective perspectives while whittling the list down to 50. Now I don’t think everyone will be happy. Some Hall of Famers were left out, and some players on the list may surprise you (Dennis is my only hint). But at the least, this list is damn well thought out—and no one was omitted by accident. Thanks to Ben, Lang, Susan, Ryne, Khalid, Russ, Konate, Matt and others, the list was finalized, and the result is this cover and accompanying feature included in the issue, which boasts well-written pieces on all 50 players. It should serve as the perfect basketball edutainment, served up at the perfect time: the NBA Finals, when the greats solidify their legacies like Mike did six memorable times.

If you read SLAM (and why would you be here if you didn’t?) then you know that the cover choice was obvious. Mike is to modern basketball what Jack Dorsey is to the Twitter. That is, he created it as it exists today. Michael Jordan is basketball. Period.

Now MJ has been out of the game for a while already—has it been six years, and 11 since his last year as a Bull?!?—but his impact hasn’t lessened. The difference between him and most—who are forgotten by the next TV-timeout—is like the difference between a masterpiece and a solid work of art: One piece, the decent piece, is respected and valued while it “plays,” but its value and peoples’ familiarity with it fades, decreasing incrementally over time. The other work of art, the masterpiece, it has all eyes in the room on it while it “plays,” and shows timeless resiliency afterward, increasing in beauty, value and fame long after the artist is gone. Jordan is that masterpiece—oh, and surprise, surprise, he’s our No. 1. Who filled out the rest of the list? Well you have to read the ish and find out. Folks in the Big Apple, you should see it by Friday. Rest of the country and subscribers, next week. We’re a little early but you all know we like to get the buzz going. Plus, this place will be in serious Finals mode by Thursday so we figured we’d start the MJ hype early.

Between bouts of bickerin’ in the Dome over the “Top 50,” we still managed to find time to give paper nods in this issue to the streets (Booger Smith), the latest news (Jeremy Tyler), the Draft (Jordan Hill) and the NBA Playoffs (Ben Gordon). Between all that and more, Issue 130 should have something for everyone.

SLAM 130

  • Add a Comment
  • Share
  • RSS

Tags: , , ,

  • http://theghostofroyhobbs.blogspot.com Mo Charlo

    Iverson wasn’t the cover? Weird.

  • http://slamonline.com GotHandles?

    GOAT. illlll cover

  • rav

    i look forward to read this when this ish is out in the UK in 6 months…

  • http://slamonline.com Ben Osborne

    Word up! He’s too modest to write it, apparently, but we couldn’t have done this without Tzvi. Those “stats, ratios and graphs” we pored over? He provided them! There was some serious research done and those of us at the meeting benefited greatly from it. So, thanks Tzvi.

  • http://deceptivelyquick.blogspot.com JackBrown

    I guess this means my monthly spam e-mail from Slam is on the way.

  • AlbertBarr

    Dope cover…Im ready for the 50…Im sure the debates will be raging next week, will you open a thread to discuss SLAMs choices?

  • Justin

    Big country reeves has gotta be on this list right?

  • Jesse

    Damn, this preview gave me goosebumps. I can’t wait for this issue to hit so we can get the debate started. but Dennis? If it’s who I think it is, and who else can it be really, you better have some good rationale for it. Great work Tzvi!

  • http://slamonline.com/ Justin Walsh

    I am SO ready for this. Also Vince’s piece for this month

  • http://www.fanballers.com so fresh n so clean

    starbury definitely makes top 40.

  • http://www.shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com Eboy

    This sh*t better show up by Monday! Can’t wait for this one.

  • Ken

    The “Top 75″ special was what got me into SLAM. So many dope photos in there. I’m guessing T-Mac and Zo aren’t on this list though.

  • http://slamonline.com Ben Osborne

    JackBrown: we send those emails weekly, actually. (and they actually have some good stuff in them if you open)

  • http://www.michaelcho.com M Cho

    maaaan — CAN’T WAIT for this one! Those other “Top 50″ and “Top 75″ issues were classics.

  • http://slamonline.com B. Long

    Holy Banana Hammock, Batman!

  • http://slamonline.com/ Justin Walsh

    B. Long, I WARNED YOU ABOUT THIS ISH! SAME WITH EBOY. My hype skills are that of a young Ryan Jones. Soon I’ll be writing a novel about an upcoming issue. MUAHAHAHAHA. Tzvi, solid work on all the research and trenchstuff. Credit where it’s due.

  • Daniel

    Now I love greatest of all-time lists as much as the next guy (assuming the next guy loves them a lot), but what I would really love (in an almost Megan Foxian way) to see a list of the greatest nicknames for players who have no business with nicknames – my number one nomination, Marcin Gortat a.k.a. The Polish Hammer.

  • http://slamonline.com/ Ryne Nelson

    Daniel: sounds like a dope online feature, actually.

  • http://slamonline.com/ Tzvi Twersky

    Thanks for the credit, but since I love studyin’ hoops all day anyway, doin’ so in a guided and directed purposeful fashion was no different. Anyway, back to what matters, cover shot is magical–sim. to issue 100, kinda.

  • Jdn41

    My gut says Lebron is going to be a lil too high on this list

  • http://slamonline.com/ Justin Walsh

    only better, because it’s one of those during the reign pictures. Whereas 100 was legendary because you got a post playing MJ to take pictures and do an interview, but it was still post playing from a look standpoint.

  • http://slamonline.com/ Justin Walsh

    Jdn41 that’s only if Ryan Jones and Ben Osborne made the list ;) hahah kidding Ben…Kidding!

  • Daniel

    If you would like it to be an online feature, I could definitely whip up a top 10 list for you. Maybe not so quickly though.

  • Steve

    I’m as pumped as the rest of them. It’ll be interesting to see the list… Especially after his exit form the playoffs maybe we’re starting to confirm our beliefs that Lebron should be lower than Kobe on the list?

  • Big Marv

    If Mike is #1 then Rasheed is #2!

  • arthur

    Rodman? Johnson?

  • http://slamonline.com DONONE

    niceeeeeeeee!!! gotta wait for it to arrive! damn..i might just buy it

  • arthur

    I was reading the old top 75 issue yesterday, actually. Is Kobe closer to 6 than 60 now? He’d better be.

  • cramzy

    If Lebron is on the list, D.WADE NEEDS TO BE ON THE LIST!. Im just saying, basically the same numbers…but oh yead Wade has a ring and a finals mvp…im just saying tho’

  • http://slamonline.com Konate Primus

    TVI is the man!

  • http://thesportsdiaryonline.blogspot.com Roy

    Dope Cover! I can’t wait for Slam 130 to drop here in the Philippines. *sheds a tear*

  • denise

    If I subscribe online today for the magazine, will I get this one in the mail?

  • http://idunkonthem.blogspot.com albie1kenobi

    i saw the cover and said
    OH MY GOD.
    yes. that means MJ.

  • kwame

    i wouldn’t want it any other way.

  • stryfee

    Now i just gotta wait!

  • http://web.mac.com/roaringred bbaby

    dope cover. and Konate, your name is pretty sick.

  • http://slamonline.com Ben Osborne

    We also have Trevor Ariza and Courtney Lee in the issue, which is a nice bit of good timing.

  • http://www.broy7.com nate the great

    damn!!! i work at a place that stocks these. i just relized it after iv been working their for years.
    i found the last 2 issues.
    the dwade tropic thunder, and the debate about kobe and lebron.
    i havnt even finished reading them.
    if they have this one in today.. im buying it!!

  • http://www.broy7.com nate the great

    see the crazy thing about the top 50 is most is a matter of oppinion.
    but when it comes down to mj. its not an oppinion anymore.
    everyone know’s mj was the best ever. even if he beat your beloved jazz, or knicks.
    or anyones favorite teams. he is the best, and thats not an oppinion.. its a fact.

  • http://www.basketballjerseyworld.com nba-jersey-king

    Wade will be on the list no doubt….. I also hope Billups is on that list

  • http://www.nba.com tealish

    I predict Kobe being top 7, and AI top 15. I definitely disagree with that disparity, but that’s how it feels like it’ll fall.

  • http://slamonline.com Jacob J

    How di allen iverson get in the mag? People in Detroit hate that coksucker!

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Wow! This has the potential to be the best issue of SLAM… EVER.
    You have a much-deserved Yao Ming cover story, for one.
    Two, you’re ranking the greatest players of all time, with AI and Kobe both far enough into their careers to make some headway on these lists.
    Great job, SLAM.

  • http://slamonline.com John D

    Billups? Are you joking?

  • http://slamonline.com Jacob J

    AI should not be on any top players of all time list.He is hated in detroit because all he does is wine about everything and absolutely sucks at anything!

  • http://nationofmillions.ca ciolkstar

    “We also have Trevor Ariza and Courtney Lee in the issue, which is a nice bit of good timing.”

    THESE are the cats I wanna read about.

    A new top 50 is a pretty good idea, though.

    And I know, I know, we’ve discuseed the politics of “Finacially Viable Covers” over and over again, but still a(nother) Jordan cover seems like a bit of a cop out to me…

  • http://slamonline.com Jacob J

    John D we are not joking because Chauncey is the best point guard in the league.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    I hope Bernard King made the list…

  • Marv The Rig

    nice bit of tape over the sponsors logo spoils the shot… typical nike mike

  • http://www.nba.com tealish

    Jacob J is a funny man.

  • http://slamonline.com/ Tzvi Twersky

    @Ciolkstar: “Another Jordan Cover”: It’s been a while since the last one my man. And you can NEVER have too much Air.

  • Taranvir

    did anyone get this yet?

  • Airswade

    Dope cover! We don’t even have issue 129 in the UK yet! Damn!

  • http://www.another48minutes.blogspot.com Gerard Himself

    lists are always fun, bring it on! Great cover, can’t wait to get it and read it.

  • DaMosta

    nice cover.

    q: what goes into being a “top 50″ player? for example, take two great players, scottie pippen and karl malone. Both are talented, but pippen has 6 championships and malone has none. Is pippen higher up, according to slam, than karl malone?

  • http://www.hibachi20.blogspot.com BETCATS

    The cool

  • Joe A

    Question about the Rondo feature; Is it an article, or is he slamadamonth for the filthiness he was throwing down in the magic series?

  • stokesey

    Airswade, Dont have that ish in OZ yet either… Patiently waiting SLAM…. ;) Always worth the wait, its just such a tease seeing the cover 6 weeks before I actually get it.

  • Simk

    Dennis Rodman left out?!! Dont give him the Pete Rose treatment just cause he’s a freak.

  • Fat Lever

    I saw the cover and thought it was 1997 all over again…

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    People for some reason are going to h@te me for saying this, but I don’t care. He’s awesome:
    Reggie Miller should be in the top 50 greatest players of all time.
    Thanks.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Yes, ahead of Dennis.

  • http://slamonline.com Russ Bengtson

    @Marv the Rig: That “piece of tape” is a black band to honor someone who’d died either during the course of the season or prior to it. I’m not sure what year the shot is from—based on the fact that the numbers are screened on the jersey I’d say it’s pre-’90s—so I can’t say who it was honoring, but that’s what it is. (Actually, some basic internet research revealed the shot is from ’91-92, and the band apparently honored longtime Bulls administrative assistant Sheri Berto, who passed away in ’91, and after whom the Berto Center practice facility is named.)

  • http://SI dfields

    kobe will be in the top 7 and top 10 range…especially if he wins this ring this this year

  • Pardeep

    A.I. BETTER BE TOP 20. Sick Cover though. IF SOMEONE CAN GET THIS IN NEW YORK AND POST THE LIST ITLL BE GREAT.

  • http://www.lkz.ch Darksaber

    Oooh la la. Now that’s a coverpic. L’uvlé!
    (Ben, come on do a Slamanatic a service and dig in that reserve pile you guys surely have at the Dome to find me the only two issues i never got, No. 1 and the original Top 50 issue? I’d pay…triple?)

  • http://www.lkz.ch Darksaber

    So does this mean i shouldn’t sharpen my knives in preparation for the annual summer bloodbath known as “the slamonline top 50″? on second thought, since this magazine list is historical, i probably still have to get ready to do battle.

  • rob stewart

    Was Zeke on the original top 50? I can’t remember.

  • http://www.lkz.ch Darksaber

    If he wasn’t, it’s probably cause MJ called Slam to boycott his butt.

  • Kas

    MJ should be nr 1, Lebron should not be there/be very low on the list, kobe should be top ten

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    I agree, AI should be top 20 AT LEAST. And @ rob: Yes, of course Zeke was on the original top 50 lol.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    I can’t wait for this issue of SLAM!

  • http://www2.gsb.columbia.edu/faculty/jstiglitz/ NICK KALATHES

    If the cartoon ain’t top-40 in a place like this then his “myth” is really starting to be exposed…..IVERSON!!!!IVERSON!!!!IVERSON!!!!IVESRON!!!!!
    IVERSON!!!!IVERSON!!!!IVERSON!!!!IVESRON!!!!!
    IVERSON!!!!IVERSON!!!!IVERSON!!!!IVESRON!!!!!
    IVERSON!!!!IVERSON!!!!IVERSON!!!!IVESRON!!!!!

  • Alan

    now, that’s a real cover for a b’ball mag. MJ 4ever!!

  • http://www2.gsb.columbia.edu/faculty/jstiglitz/ NICK KALATHES

    @Teddy….:the only people(non family members) than can rank A.I. in a top-20 all-time list are his sponsors (Reebok etc.)…and YOU!!!!

  • el gee

    i was really excited when i saw the picture of mj. then i read t’s piece about all the talk and debate that went down in the slam cave and i FLAT OUT CAN NOT WAIT!!!

  • http://www2.gsb.columbia.edu/faculty/jstiglitz/ NICK KALATHES

    If i remember correct the original top-7 was M.J,Wilt,Oscar,Russell,Magic,Bird and Kareem(in that order.if not,somebody with the issue please correct me). Logically (since none of them played any serious NBA game since the last list) this should remain unchanged. If not it will be really interesting to know what made Russell to move up and Oscar or Wilt to move dowm…..

  • larrylegend

    dennis rodman and dennis johnson got to be in that top 50! and jkidd!

  • http://www.laumol.nl/weblog Laumol

    Did I make the list?

  • http://groups.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=groups.groupProfile&groupID=104091021&Mytoken=DDF795E1-BAA9-4AA4-A658D26EF5D70607132654176 clapzilla

    I Got A Sneel Peek, Here’s What It Looks Like: 1. MJ; 2. Manu; 3. MJ, Again, 4. Brandon Bass; 5. Vernon Maxwell. Done. They Didn’t Even Bother Wth The Next 45 Since The Top 5 Is So Sick.

  • http://www2.gsb.columbia.edu/faculty/jstiglitz/ NICK KALATHES

    @clapzilla….:speaking of Manu,i have this strange feeling that the guy that has won EVERYTHING and EVERYWHERE will propably be ranked lower than the guy that has won NOTHING and NOWHERE (iverson!!!!).Then again its a SLAM list, we should always do our best to keep our kids happy !!!!

  • Dave

    “AI should not be on any top players of all time list.”
    Think before you type. Please.
    The Worm is at #47 – takers?

  • http://www2.gsb.columbia.edu/faculty/jstiglitz/ NICK KALATHES

    correcting my 3:21am comment, original=last.

  • http://www2.gsb.columbia.edu/faculty/jstiglitz/ NICK KALATHES

    @Dave….:A.I. should not be on any top-10000 players list since he defies the very basic principle of this game (TEAM-GAME) so he cannot be considered a basketball player. But he should be at the top-10 all-time list of shoe sellers.

  • Michael

    this is slam, so AI will be on the list, he shouldnt be on any objective list though. In the history of the NBA, there are at least 50 guys you would take before iverson. hell i could rattle 50 off right now

  • BIG Z

    allen iverson is one of the greatest basketball players of all time period
    he single handedly led the sixers to the finals he was one man team

  • BIG Z

    p.s. excuse me for my poor grammar.

  • BIG Z

    tim duncan better be top 20!!!

  • Michael

    u could make an argument for duncan as top 10 easily. best power forward ever, 4 rings, 11 time all star, 2 mvp’s, all nba and all defense EVERY YEAR of his career. he belongs in the very upper tier of the games greatest players

  • sixersforlife_85

    Did MJ pose for this issue or is it an old photo? I haven’t seen what he looks like recently. Oh and if it isn’t a pose for SLAM, then that’s what 2 issues in a row without a photoshoot? Cutting back on staff huh? Damn credit crunch.

  • BIG Z

    this should be a 5 cover issue

  • http://www2.gsb.columbia.edu/faculty/jstiglitz/ NICK KALATHES

    @Michael….:i could rattle off 50 european players from this decade over the shoe-seller right now…..easily.

  • BIG Z

    im thinking steve nash is #50

  • http://www2.gsb.columbia.edu/faculty/jstiglitz/ NICK KALATHES

    @sixersforlife_85….:this is an oooold photo my friend…

  • BIG Z

    2X MVP ENOUGH SAID

  • BIG Z

    in 6 years oj mayo is gonna be on this list. mark my words

  • Peter

    If tim duncan isn’t higher than kobe I want an explanation, if lebron is higher than wade I’m boycotting slam.

  • BIG Z

    this is only my opinion (and jerry west’s) but when its al said and done i think lebron could be the best of all time.

  • okshajia

    Wow!I like the cover!But I don’t think chinese SLAM will use it!It is impossible!

  • http://www.twitter.com/TheDiesel Anton

    Pretty disrespectful of Jordan to use LeBron’s number.

  • http://www.twitter.com/mansonovic Mansonovic

    If I was a betting man, I’d have Duncan at 8, Shaq at 9, Kobe at 10, and LeBron somewhere in the higher teens, probably around 17-20. Not saying I agree with that, but I’d hazard a guess.

  • http://sdklf.com Jukai

    OMFG HOW COULD YOU PUT GILBERT ARENAS ABOVE IVERSON?!?!?!

  • http://sdklf.com Jukai

    Now I want to know, will Chris Paul/Lebron James/Dwayne Wade/Dwight Howard be on that list? You know, players who you could arguably say are all-time greats but haven’t built a career high enough where at least SOME speculation is necessary to place them?

  • Michael

    @Jukai, i think these players suffer from timing. In 10 years time when their careers are done and another one of these lists is done you will see the list start to skew away from older guys and more recent guys will go in.

  • Michael

    @mansovic, top 20 is pretty high for lebron right now, surely? that is pretty lofty company, the only current guys who are top 20 all time are duncan, shaq, kobe

  • http://sdklf.com Jukai

    Michael: thanks, but I’m sure we’ll see Shaq, and Duncan and Kobe and Iverson on the list.

  • Michael

    yes agree we will (though i disagree about iverson), my point was those guys have got enough sample size for want of a better word and have racked up the rings, mvp’s etc to justify putting them in. If you stopped all their careers now, have any of those guys done enough, maybe wade and lebron i guess. Having said that, I am sure Bill Walton will make the list and he had a relatively few good years without injury.

  • http://sdklf.com Jukai

    Okay, I know since I’ll be in and out of the office all day, and wont be able to respond, I’ll probably regret this since I wont be able to respond, but….
    JUKAI’S TOP 50 LIST WRITTEN UP IN TEN MINUTES:
    1. Michael Jordan
    2. Wilt Chamberlain
    3. Magic Johnson
    4. Larry Bird
    5. Kareem Abdul Jabbar
    6. Oscar Robertson
    7. Hakeem Olajuwon
    8. Bill Russel
    9. Julias Erving
    10. Tim Duncan
    11. SHAQ
    12. Kobe Bryant
    13. Jerry West
    14. Karl Malone
    15. Rick Barry
    16. John Stockton
    17. Isiah Thomas
    18. Charles Barkley
    19. Kevin Garnett
    20. Lebron James (YEAH I WENT THERE)
    21. Bob Cousy
    22. Clyde Drexler
    23. Moses Malone
    24. Scottie Pippen
    25. George Gervin
    26. Elgin Baylor (I know, people’ll think he’s too low…)
    27. Allen Iverson
    28. Bob Pettit
    29. John Havlicek
    30. Walt Frazier
    31. Kevin McHale
    32. Dwayne Wade (YEAH I WENT THERE)
    33. David Robinson
    34. Jason Kidd
    35. Pete Maravich
    36. Elvin Hayes
    37. Bill Walton
    38. Reggie Miller
    39. Dominique Wilkins
    40. Earl Monroe
    41. Patrick Ewing
    42. Gary Payton
    43. Nate Archibald
    44. Willis Reed (I know, people are going to get pissed at this too…)
    45. Billy Cunningham
    46. Chris Paul (YEAH I WENT THERE)
    47. James Worthy
    48. Wes Unseld
    49. Bob McAdoo
    50. Artis Gilmore (Maybe… 50 was the hardest one)

  • ABIMATOR

    If Jordan is #1 then Mbah A Moute should be #2

  • Michael

    good list Jukai, but no room for Robert Parish??

  • http://slamonline.com Ben Osborne

    I’d like to give people a chance to read the magazine first, esp because it’s not just a list but some really good writing about each of the 50, but we will post it on the site at some point before we put out our Champs issue. We’ll also run the explanation of how we chose…

  • http://slamonline.com Ben Osborne

    It’ll look better in the mag no matter what though, cause we got some classic images as well, most of which coincide with the prime of the player’s career (which is about what I’d call 91-92 for Mike…hence the image we chose).

  • http://sdklf.com Jukai

    Michael: Sorry, Parish was great but I don’t think he makes top 50…
    Ben, any criticism on my list? Besides you guys liking Baylor way too much?

  • Peter

    Jukai,why duncan ahead of shaq, I know he has one more mvp but….

  • http://www.mybleedingfingertips.blogspot.com/ Myles Brown

    Lists Are Bourgeois.

  • http://www.twitter.com/mansonovic Mansonovic

    Peter, if I was guessing, I’d say it’s because Wilt, Dream, Russell and Kareem are all better centers than Shaq, whereas Tim Duncan is the best power forward the game has ever seen. Yes, better than Karl Malone.

  • Washtub

    Jukai, what exactly has Kevin Garnett done to warrant a place in the top 20, let alone in front of scottie pippen, let alone on this list?

  • http://www2.gsb.columbia.edu/faculty/jstiglitz/ NICK KALATHES

    @Jukai….:i was going to ask you how can you have Hakeem over Russell (i agree if the concept is to have the players play today and forget any kind of legendary status they have since Russell is propably the most legendary player of all time with the possible exception of Mike. Hakeem is bigger equally athletic not much worse defender and a WAY more complete offensive player) and at the same time have Erving over Kobe (since we don’t take in consideration the legendary status of guys- like the Russell example demonstrated- Kobe has the same size,almost equally athletic, better passer,WAY better shooter WAY better dribbler and basically a clearly more complete player than Erving although he will never attain his character.He also has 3 rings as the second best player of a team just like Erving has only 1 as Moses second banana) but then i see some completely crazy things so i understand this “WRITTEN UP IN 10 MINUTES” explains everything……(seeing A.I. in any top-100 list is enough for me to stop examining it seriously)

  • Peter

    Mansonovic, that is probably true, but I don’t think that is a good reason to put him in front of shaq. Duncan was supposed to be a centre but there was no way they were going to move Robinson to the PF position or have him coming off the bench. Shaq won 3 championships and 3 final mvp’s in a row after all.

  • Michael

    Jukai, you dont think Parish makes the top 50, but dominique, reggie miller, chris paul and wade do? Jeez man check this guys career stats out. I dont particularly hold a canlde for Parish but that seems like a glaring omission

  • Peter

    Nick Kalathes, I agree that Iverson is over rated, but don’t think leaving him out of the top 100 list is a bit harsh. How many 6 foot or under players have been MVP and led their team to the finals, as well as led the league in steals and points.

  • http://www2.gsb.columbia.edu/faculty/jstiglitz/ NICK KALATHES

    @Peter….:i have answered this a million times….

  • AR

    MJ better employ some more security….

  • truthteller

    If Kobe wins a ring this year he cracks the top 10! Easy!

  • Stan

    Everyone has their own top 50. I don’t think Bird is better than Kobe, nor better than Lebron. He was a skilled shooter with great team mates and that’s about it. I’d take the Admiral over KG anytime.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    @ Jukai: Your list is wack. How is Clyde Frazier not top 20? LOL

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Allen Iverson > John Stockton.
    Also…
    HOW IN THE WORLD IS KG AHEAD OF BAYLOR AND ICE?

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Ah, I like lists. Good discusssions.

  • AR

    Teddy-The-Bear:How many times,in total,have you seen Clyde Frazier play?

  • http://sdklf.com Jukai

    I love this stuff, free-flowing debate!
    Peter: Generally, I just think Duncan did more with less. Shaq has had Kobe and Wade help him get to four rings. Duncan had the Admiral, but pretty much no other legendary player on his squad for his latter two (Manu and Parker are great, and all, but they’re no Kobe and Wade). I also respect Duncan’s work ethic far over Shaq’s: Shaq was an amazing athletic package, Duncan had it all, from athletics to skill to fundamentals. I think Shaq is probably the better player, one on one, but Duncan is far more valuable to a team… his passing, his anchor defense, his leadership, these qualities that Duncan has can help a team go farther than what Shaq can bring. Note, though, that they’re right next to each other, so it’s not that I believe Duncan is SUPERIOR, just slightly better.
    As per Garnett, well, I don’t think you realize how GOOD Garnett was in his heyday. This dude was MVP, DPOY, all-first team, all-defense, he’s won acolades like clockwork. I mean, he’s in his 30s, and do you SEE how much worse Boston got when Garnett got hurt? Boston went from title contender to barely-getting-to-the-second round. Garnett is an unbelievable help defender, he’s got awesome go-to-moves and can spread the floor anyway you need him to. For his size, his ball handling his bananas. More to the point, Garnett was the face of a franchise, Scottie Pippen wasn’t. Pippen’s great, all-around amazing player, but Pippen sort of melted carrying the Bulls into the playoffs. Garnett always gave it his all in the playoffs, and even though Pierce played spectacuarly and got Finals MVP, Boston owes it to Garnett for getting past rounds one and two: he downright dominated.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Enough to know that he brought 2 championships to my Knicks squad… Both against the monstrous JERRY WEST/WILT CHAMBERLAIN-led LA Lakers.
    Enough to also know that in Game 7 of the 1970 finals, he dropped 36 points and had 19 assists to lead our team to victory, with a hobbled Willis Reed.
    That doesn’t constitute as top 20 to you, AR?

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Also, Clyde > Scottie.

  • http://sdklf.com Jukai

    Nick Kalathes: When I think of overall best players, I try and use every standard one can to gauage a player (how well he did one on one, how valuable he was to his team, how many awards/championships has he won, how could he fair going up against other competition, how competition was at the time, etc.) and I really think Hakeem was just THAT good. I mean, dude holds records in blocks, steals, points, rebounds, he was PERFECT, NO FLAWS! Russel was a great leader and an amazing defender, he was pretty effective scoring off the fastbreak, and he could pretty much outleap most people in TODAY’S game (I believe he was the seventh best high jumper in the world when he played in college) but I always am shaky with how much I give Russel credit for his 11 championship rings. If you look at HOW MANY Hall of Famers Russel played with, as well as how many series they squeeked away in game sevens by less than five points, well, maybe you’d come to the same conclusion as me: that the 11 championships weren’t ALL because of Russel. Once again though, Russel is only one ahead of Hakeem, so I don’t think Hakeem is THAT much more deserving of his spot, I just think that his abilities, and what he did against others, outweighs Russel’s dominance.
    Now, I’m guessign you don’t really know anything about Julius Erving. Dude averaged more blocks, rebounds, just as many assists, and just about as many steals as Kobe. His defense was VASTLY underrated (look at his numbers, two steals and almost two blocks every season) and while his shooting was Lebron-ish at times, his offensive awareness, driving ability and hangtime are pretty much not seen in the NBA, even today. I think where I may have gone wrong is that I do factor in his ABA playing time when I put him on the list (where he once averaged 32 and 12, with two and a half blocks and two steals… don’t gimme no “it’s the ABA” talk, the league wasn’t that inferior to the NBA to discount his amazing performances). Dr. J won multiple ABA championships and MVP awards, and the fact that he was able to go into the NBA and win an MVP and a championship just shows how great the dude was. If I -HAVE- to discount his ABA days though, then yes, Julias would probably drop to around 15 on my list and Kobe would rise above him. So there’s that.
    Michael: Didn’t Parish average less than 15 points and 10 assists a game? He never hit 20 points a game, never blocked more than two and a half shots a game… Telling me to look at his stats was probably the opposite direction to go. Most of his points were garbage buckets from the vast attention that Bird and McHale got. Maybe I’m not a Parish fan, and maybe because I watched him at the end of his career, I have a worse impression of that but… It just seems UNREASONABLE for me to think he’d get into the top 50. I’m sure SLAM’ll put him in.

  • http://sdklf.com Jukai

    Stan: I know everyone has their opinion and all, but your opinion of Bird is downright WACK… Watch old clips of Bird, playoff or regular season clips, you’ll… man, I can’t even start. It would take too much time. Bird is more than a shooter, that’s all I can say.
    Teddy-the-Bear: Fraizer does seem kinda low at 30, huh? I guess I shoulda raised him to 25-something, there’s argument to be made there: clutch shooter, great leader, one of the BEST defensive point guards of all time. I’d have trouble moving him into the top-20 though, I think that’s overrating his skills. I’ll concede I may have jipped Fraizer out of his proper place on the list.
    That’s all I’ll agree with, though. John Stockton would kill Iverson, I don’t even know if that’s a joke or something, but damn. KG is definitely more valuable than Gervin, Gervin was a scorer, a nice weak-side shot blocker, and a good leader. After that, his value sort of trails a bit. Garnett was all that and more. The Baylor part, well, that’s on me, that’s a stance I take that takes a lot of heat. I could (and should) probably move him up, but he was a known ball-hog, a bit harmful to team chemistry, had trouble adjusting to other stars, I mean, you don’t think it’s odd that the Lakers IMMEDIATELY won a championship the moment he retired? Once again though, his placement is on me. His stats and accolades say he should be higher.

  • AR

    So,to answer my question:you looked at the stats.

  • http://www2.gsb.columbia.edu/faculty/jstiglitz/ NICK KALATHES

    if somebody is new to this forum and wants an “one-line summary” of who Teddy-the-bear is ,well…just read his 1:39pm comment….seriously moments like this is one of the main reasons i follow the comments here. I mean, everyone can write “J.R.Smith>M.J, or Bynum> Wilt” but with our precious Teddy you know that he(or she) actually means it…..once again, THANKS TEDDY!!!!

  • http://sdklf.com Jukai

    Damn, for once I’m gonna co-sign the dude above me. Teddy’s out of his mind for that one.

  • AR

    Cotton Fitzsimmons>Artis Gilmore.

  • http://www2.gsb.columbia.edu/faculty/jstiglitz/ NICK KALATHES

    @Jukai….:i have seen very few games (less than 10)of Dr.J but all of these were big time games with his numbers exactly the way you describe them. I’ll tell you this : the guy was a freak of nature for his time,he had the physical tools of todays top guys(Kobe, Scottie but not Lebron’s) which mainly gave him all those good numbers in rebounds and blocks….at the same time i could not believe (i was really dissapointed) how the guy had trouble dribbling the ball, while his shooting was for todays standards (sad to write this) T-E-R-R-I-B-L-E. Go and check some games of his and tell me if you can honestly compare them to Kobe’s big ones…

  • http://sdklf.com Jukai

    Nick: First off, my dad had TONS of tapes of Dr. J, so trust me, I’ve seen the dude play. I’ve seen entire games of it. I’m not sure why people say his ball handling was so bad, it’s not like he diced through the offense on in the half-court but it certainly didn’t slow him down. And yeah, his shot was pretty bad, but we’re not taking Kevin Johnson-level bad here, we’re just talking if he didn’t have the open shot, he was better off just not taking it. I think TERRRRRIBLE is overplaying it (I mean, Dr. J did shoot around 32% from the three-point line. That’s not GOOD shooting, but it’s not attrocious).
    Also, I don’t get your “comparing big games” remarks. Dr. J had a lot more “big games” than Kobe, albeit Kobe has a few more “spectacular” games than Dr. J.
    I’m also not going to discount Dr. J’s superior rebounding and block and steal numbers because he was a superior athlete to Kobe. If we take away natural physical abilities, Shaq wouldn’t make my top 50 list!
    Watch some ABA footage of Dr. J, see if you can find it. It may change your mind.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Fair enough, Jukai… What’s the deal with this weird Nick guy?

  • Franko

    MANU is TOP 50.

  • http://www2.gsb.columbia.edu/faculty/jstiglitz/ NICK KALATHES

    @Franko….:he is,but better not to say that kind of things here…..

  • Stan

    I’ve seen lots of games and videos of Bird, he is actually my favorite player growing up, but looking at his game and Kobe’s, I think Kobe is superior to him, and Kobe is not even my favorite player now. Maybe we should divide this by top 10 for every position. Stocton is the number one all-time in assist and steals so why is Iverson better???

  • Pingback: SLAM ONLINE |

  • Pingback: SLAM ONLINE |

  • Teddy-th-Bear

    Nick is hilarious.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Anyways, Iverson IS better than Stockton. John was great, but seriously: Iverson is third all time in career points per game, trailing only Michael and Wilt. Iverson is second ALL TIME in career PLAYOFF points per game, only to Michael Jordan.
    You can’t make the argument that Stockton won more, because both guys never won rings.
    Iverson won an MVP.
    Iverson never had Karl Malone.
    That’s why Allen Iverson is better, in my opinion.
    So there you go.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Don’t forget Iverson is what, 5’11?

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    People LOVE to h@te and underrate Allen Iverson.

  • listless

    I’m fed up of reading lists for two reasons;
    1) I hate reading lists
    2) I hate reading lists

    Whats the obsession with listing everything these days? top ten this, top 5 that, top 20 blah blah blah.
    Just to add 5 or 6 guys from this generation to a ‘new’ top 50. Mental.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    How many times have you watched Walt play, AR? I may be a young’n, but I know SOME stuff, pal.

  • Pardeep

    @JUKAI: AI 27th?. Truly Jukai loves players who are marketed by the NBA as good boys and dont have to many tattoos and dont change the game and dont bring hip hop to the game. Find me a player 5 foot 11 that Won 4 scoring titles averaged 27 ppg for his career along with 6 assists has roughly 24 000 points, 5500 assists, 3 steals titles, 10 time all star, Many many ALL NBA selections,NBA MVP, He once averaged 33 ppg and 7 assists and never won the scoring title because of the best player in the world in Kobe Bryant, He averaged over 30 ppg many times He took the sh*tiest team to the finals and unlike LeBron he won a game. Hes done things in his career stat wise that Kobe has not done. Then you say NO CHAMPIONSHIP? Oviously you aint gonna win a title when your 2nd option is like Eric Snow. Think of former NBA championship teams the Bulls- Jordan,Pippen, Lakers-Kobe,Shaq, Spurs- Duncan,Parker,Ginobli,Robinson was with Duncan too.Pistons- Had 4 all stars, Celtics-Big 3. Allen Iverson never had a Scottie Pippen or another big star and MELO does not count that was just a bad fit because they both score. and no Detroits whole team was out of their best days when he got there. Other than the Big 3 who will probably never win one again all the stars won titles when they were in their Prime or at their Peaks, Iverson never had such stars in his prime in Philly even if he had one star he wouldev got his. If everyone blames LeBrons supporting cast for him losing. Trust me A.I.’s supporting cast was much worse. No one says anything good about A.I. because they hate braids, tats, hip hop and a “thug”. No more than 5 players in the L would say I dont want A.I.’s career.

  • Pardeep

    ^ A.I. a lock for top 20 if not top 15. His career is super succesful.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    @ Pardeep: Totally agreed. Also, you should mention the fact that Allen Iverson is second ALL-TIME in career points per game, trailing only Michael Jordan. Yes, ahead of Elgin Baylor. Yes, ahead of the Stilt. Yes, ahead of LeBron. Yes, ahead of Jerry West. You all get the point.
    IVERSON TOP 20.
    Not to mention the 6 assists he’s been averaging per game, EVERY single playoffs.

  • Pardeep

    For sure theres to many A.I. haters

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Also, @ Jukai: Where’s Badboy Bill Laimbeer on your list?

  • nba kid

    yeah iverson got to the finals, but what was the competition? I mean honestly, the eastern conf finals were against milwaukee. Milwaukee? I mean ai vs ray allen is not exactly a difficult matchup for iverson. Stockton is the career leader in assists and steals. Sorry ai but you can’t get there no matter how hard you try.

  • http://sdklf.com Jukai

    We get it– Iverson was an INCREDIBLE scorer. Unless you have a better reason for me to bump Iverson up, I’m not doing it. Iverson would KILL stockton in a game of horse. Now, what qualities does Stockton have over Iverson? Leadership, court vision, passing, one-on-one defense, defensive disruption (averaging over 3 assists four times in his career!!!!), tempo control, team chemistry, adaption, the ability to defer, and most importantly, the ability to dominate without scoring. Something that Iverson has never been able to do.
    Of course Iverson has all those scoring records. It’s the only thing he is good at. His legendary scoring is good enough to make it in the top-30 all time, but c’mon… that is his PEAK. I thought about moving him down, and if you had seen him play for the Nuggets or Pistons, you’d think about moving him down too.
    Being 5’11 means absolutely NOTHING to me. Great, the skill needed to score like he does around the basket at 5’11 is amazing. If he was 6’5, he’d probably be in my top 20. He’s not, soooo….
    Also, Bill Laimbeer deserves to be on the list as much as Parish does. Meaning, he doesn’t. There’s actually about another 30-40 guys I’d put on the list before Laimbeer.

  • http://sdklf.com Jukai

    I mean, if you REALLY think Iverson was a better player than Stockton, you were born 1990 and only started watching basketball in 2000. It’s inconceivable to me, it’s like saying “Isiah Thomas, he was good, but that Michael Redd guy woulda murdered him!”

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    LOL @ Jukai. I’ve seen Stockton play, thanks. Iverson is better.
    Stockton was a great passer and a great defender, and a great leader. Hall of Fame.
    Iverson is a great scorer, good passer (6-7 assists per game his whole career).
    Iverson lead his team to the finals, nearly BY HIMSELF, WITHOUT a Karl Malone. You apparently don’t realize how much of a difference having a Karl Malone-type big man makes. Stockton was never the number 1 guy on the Jazz.
    In short: How many MVP’s has Stockton won?

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Jukai, apparently you also missed a playoff series in which Allen Iverson averaged 30 points and 10 assists per game. With the type of team he had? I’d say he’s a pretty good passer.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Well, its your list, so whatever lol. I just hope SLAM does the right thing…

  • MSkittle

    Best 23 ballers of the last 20 years.

    1. Jordan
    2. Prime Shaq
    3. Prime Hakeem (94 and 95)
    4. Kobe
    5. Lebron
    6. D Wade
    7. Prime Iverson (30 ppg for years being 6’0. Hard to win with him though).
    6. Bird (he was past his prime when I saw him)
    7. Magic (he was past his prime when I saw him)
    8. Karl Malone
    9. Tim Duncan
    10. Clyde Drexler
    11. Dominique Wilkins
    12. Prime T Mac (his prime didn’t last long enough)
    13. Patrick Ewing
    14. Barkley
    15. Prime Shawn Kemp
    15. Prime Chris Webber (Sacramento days)
    16. Prime Penny Hardaway
    17. David Robinson
    18. Amare’s One Series Wonder (37 ppg, 14 rpg against Tim Duncan in 2005)
    19. Reggie Miller
    20. Stockton (stats, longevity, feistiness.. Game wasn’t that impressive to watch).
    21. Vince Carter (Toronto years)
    22. Tim Hardaway (Golden State and Miami years)
    23. Dirk Nowitzki (milennium Bird Mane. He just needs to win more and be more clutch).

  • Dave

    @ Dr NICK: “i could rattle off 50 european players from this decade over the shoe-seller right now”
    You’re right. You’re absolutely right.
    And the only reason Iverson managed to go to the Finals, score and steal so much, get so may MVP votes and win so many games, not to mention kill so many players one-on-one is because all those feats are achieved by selling shoes.
    There are fifty guys who played in Europe who could do all that if only they were magically transported into the 2-guard spot on the 76ers roster in ’96 instead of AI.
    My bad. I’m stupid. You’re totally right.

  • http://sdklf.com Jukai

    Teddy-the-Bear: Okay, sit down kid. Let me tell you about Stockton.
    Iverson had one Finals appearence. Other then that, the dude didn’t have much success in the playoffs in his career. Mostly first round exits, some years not making it at all. Russ once said that Iverson getting to the NBA Finals was the worst thing that could ever happen in Iverson’s career, and I agree: dude never learned to play off the ball, to spot up shoot, to defer to other stars, to defend. Why bother, when you can take control of the ball and just obliterate another team, right? But when Iverson should have been doing that 75-85% of the time, he wind up doing it 90-95% of the time and teams became dependent to Iverson, and that contributed to only being able to win in certain situations. He’s a glorified Steve Nash, if you will. Steve Nash won two MVPs, by the way, so if Iverson is better than Stockton for one, Nash kills them both.
    But I digress, let me tell you about John Stockton, the dude who never missed the playoffs in all 19 seasons of his career… the dude who made it to the conference finals seven times, and made it to the NBA Finals twice, both times losing to the Bulls in tough matchups that usually went down to the wire. You think Iverson is a warrior playing through injuries? Stockton missed 22 games -HIS ENTIRE CAREER.- That’s toughness. Especially since Stockton was a VERY physical player, tough man-to-man defense, taking it to the rim to draw contact, and SCREEN setting (which Jerry Sloan said was his most important skillset, something that very few people realized, he would set screens for MALONE). So off the ball, Stockton was a deadly spotup shooter (shooting 40% from the three some years), and a FANTASTIC screener: abilities that Iverson never developed his entire career.
    But let’s look at Stockton on the ball. Not only is it INSANE that a point guard is a career 51% shooter (way over the Answer) but, incase you didn’t know, Stockton was the BEST PASSER EVER.
    Most assists ever in total, second most per game. He holds five of the top six assist seasons in the NBA, along with the first in total (1,164) and per game (14.5). He has had 34 games of twenty or more assists. Jason Kidd has two, incase yer wondering. Oh, and these acolades were all done IN THE HALF-COURT. While Magic was running and pushing the tempo, Stockton was averaging three more assists walking the ball up the court. Insane.
    Oh, he also had a couple of assists over his career (I think somewhere around 3000?)
    So, yeah, you can keep thinking Iverson is a better player. But in reality, he’s HALf the player Stockton is. It’s really insane you think this.

  • http://sdklf.com Jukai

    *he also had a couple of steals in his career

  • http://www2.gsb.columbia.edu/faculty/jstiglitz/ NICK KALATHES

    SLAMONLINE: “where you need over 1000 words to explain why Stocton is over A.I.”

  • http://sdklf.com Jukai

    Feel free to jump in, Spanny.

  • Jake C

    Nice preview Tzvi. AI top 20 no doubt

  • larrylegend

    the chief?! please! most games EVER played, best defender against kareem, and he knocks down laimbeer…what more you can ask for?????? (i know it’s printed already…)
    stockton over ai is a no brainer, even stock was the dirtiest player ever!

  • http://sdklf.com Jukai

    Actually, Kareem said Gilmore was the best defender he ever played against, but keep making things up bro.

  • larrylegend

    you could be right…best defender on the highest stage, able to deny him another chip?

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    @ Jukai: Stockton had Malone. Stockton wasn’t #1, even on his own team. Put Stockton on that Philly team, subtract Allen Iverson.
    That Philly team wouldn’t have gotten past the first round, maybe even missing the playoffs.
    AGAIN: How many MVP’s has John Stockton won?

  • http://fjsdklf.com Jukai

    Teddy: Cool, ignore my Steve Nash comment, that’s fine. Do you think Steve Nash is better than Iverson?
    To answer your question: yes, probably, if you subtract Iverson and add Stockton to the 2000 Phili team, it would not make it past the second round of the playoffs. Then again, subtract Stockton and add Iverson to the Utah Jazz team, and they would have even LESS success. Malone was the go-to guy on offense, but Stockton WAS the number one guy in that he was the vocal leader of the team, he had the ball in his hands when it was crutch time and HE decided when it was time to give the ball up to Malone and for Malone to score.
    Adding Iverson on the Utah Jazz would have pretty much ended 19 straight years of playoff appearances. If you think Iverson destroyed the Pistons, good lord, either Malone would have strangled him or Sloan would have shot him.
    Iverson is a better scorer and pretty much nothing else.

  • T.

    I’m not sure but with all the Iverson hate, I think Nick Kalathes is Rip Hamilton. Anywho. I will hold judgement on the list until I see where Bill Russell, Kevin Garnett (ESPECIALLY since he has a ring now) and Clyde Drexler fall. Dope cover though.

  • Pardeep

    @Teddy: Everyone knows you and me are right about Iverson. Jukai truly a hater hates A.I’s image and dont like the hip hop culture he brings so he disses his game Stockon and Iverson are no where near eachother neither is Nash there was a lot and I mean ALOT of politics involved in those two MVPs. I already told up top why A.I. never won just read my comment. Stockon is not better than A.I. the hardest thing to do in the game is score and A.I. did that consistently for so so long. Hes done everything in the league at such a small height and theres no way Stockton could do things A.I. did on the court. A.I. could have had like 3 rings easily if things went his way he needed another guy that could give him even 18 ppg consistently a guy that could cause other team problems and he would have single handedly lead the Sixers to the title. A.I. took a SH*T team to the finals with no one. Individually A.I. is one of the best ever the things hes done at that size with that much negative things going on with him its preety amazing I dont no antoher player that could do that. Let JUKAI hate ive noticed this guy is obsessed with hating on AI theres a lot of other like him so w.e. END OF THE DAY AI IS ONE OF THE GREATEST. TOP 20 EVER.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    LOL @ Jukai: Iverson was not what sunk Detroit. And if people believe that, which they do, I’m not one of them. And I’m pretty sure Iverson on that Jazz team would have faired decently, at least making it past the first 1 or 2 rounds of the playoffs.
    We agree to disagree, I guess.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Co-sign Pardeep. Right on. Stockton is definitely great, but I’m not changing my stance on Iverson.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Let’s discuss another one, Jukai: Why Tim over Shaq? (which I pretty much agree with). Why Dream over Bill Russell?

  • Superman_Osman

    Sh*t! Even digital I can’t get the damn ish early…*sigh*

  • BIG Z

    @jukai’s list there are 3 things wrong with youre list (1 KG is not the 19th greatest player of all time. yes he has a great career but there are players with more distinguished careers than his. (2 as great a player lebron is he dosent deserve a top 20 a spot maybe in another 6 years when grows up and can shake an opponets hand + whens a championship. and (3 why oh why is cp3 #46 and steve nash isnt even on youre list. NASH has 2 mvp awards 6X all star led the L is apg for 3 years 3x 1st team all nba and i think the best PG of my generation and oner pf the greatest shooters of all time. p.s. cp3 is 1000 X better than iverson he is the same size but has more assists rebs steals and can score 40 any time he wants. cp3 does not seserve no.46 tho

  • http://www.sportingnews.com/blog/jaeniko JMac

    Any cover that has MJ on it is a great cover for me!

  • truthteller

    JMac,
    I agree with you on that!

  • andrew

    i am waiting for another insane issue of slam.my top 10 list is:
    1.jordan
    2.johnson
    3.bird
    4.chamberlain
    5.russel
    6.robertson
    7.abdul jabaar
    8.olajuwon.
    9.erving
    10.o”neal or bryant

  • andrew

    i am sure that this issue will be one of the best issues i own

  • Michael

    Iverson over Isiah? Nah money.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Big Z, I was about to agree with you until I realized just how stupid your comment about Chris Paul over Iverson was. Clearly you just started watching basketball this year.

  • Dave

    While I think Iverson is one of the best players of the last twenty years (except in Europe, where he would have been lucky to score 65ppg career average, which is extremely low for the Euro game), I think I might take Stockton if I was picking my team.
    Primarily because I’d have Wilt standing there with his giant paw calling for it 30 times a game and would want SOMEONE to throw it to him.

  • Quail

    Wilt was the best individual player of all time. dont argue. Michael Jordan had the most success because of the team he had. Wilt was the best individual.

  • Quail

    nice list by the way Jukai. only thing i see wrong is no George Mikan.

  • ian

    It has been too long since the GOAT graced your cover.
    Thank You!

  • TexMex0

    I’m french and don’t understand how the August issue of Slam can already be on sale. Can somebody light me up on this?

  • ai4evaaa

    please! ai! lets make a comback! miss ur anklebrakers! haha

  • Taranvir

    has it come to Canada yet, cause im a subscriber and i havent got it yet.

  • fuddie

    It is fitting that the GOAT (greatest player of all time) would be pasted all over last ish. I haven’t got it yet either.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Wesley21

    Why isn’t DWade at least in the low 40s?

  • Alex

    Lebrons gotta be on the cover hes the next greatest player

    all he needs is a little help like jordan!

  • andrew

    i am a subscriber for 10 months and i have not received any issues yet

  • http://SLAM.COM Zach

    MY TOP 50 PLAYERS OF ALL TIME-#50 JULIUS ERVING #49 JASON TERRY #48 STEVE NASH #47 BEN WALLACE #46 Tony Parker #45 GILBERT AREANS #44 MR BIG SHOT #43 MELO #42 VINCE CARTER #41 AMARE STOUDAMIRE #40 C-WEB #39 KEVIN GARNET #38 RAY ALLEN #37 RICHARD JEFFERSON #36 JOE DUMARS #35 Hakeem Olajuwon #33 TIM HARDWAY # 32 THE ICEMAN #31 DIRK- GERAMN-NOTEI DONT KNOW HOW TO SPELLHIS LAST NAME-#30 JASON KIDD #29 BENARD KING #28 REGGIE MILLER #27 SPUD WEBB #26 ELGIN BAYLOR #25 BOB COUSY #24 ELTON BRAND #23 CHARLES BARKLEY #22 SCOTTIE PIPPEN #21 DENNIS RODMAN #20 WILLIS UNSLED #19 LARRY BIRD #18 BILL WALTON #17 DWIGHT HOWARD #16 DWAYNE WADE #15 YAO MING #14 DENNIS JOHNSON #13 KARL MALONE #12 JOHN STOCKTON #11 LEBRON JAMES #10 SHAQ #9 ERVIN MAGIC JOHNSON #8 ALLEN IVERSON #7 JAMES WORTHY #6 CLYDE DREXLER #5 MOSES MALONE #4 KAREEM ABDUL JABBAR #3 KOBE BRYANT #2 WILT CHAMBLERIAN #1 MICHAEL JORDAN

  • http://slamonline.com/ Tzvi Twersky

    Andrew, for subscription questions email slam(@)palmcoastd.com ….Didn’t write it normal way as to avoid spammers.

  • http://www.supremenewyork.com Waylonakolipse

    How about making a top 50 “Most Entertaining Ball Players To Watch” list? My top 50,that I’ve seen in person, would be 1.MJ 2.BARKLEY 3.RODMAN 4.MANUTE BOL 5.VINCE CARTER(pre 2002) 6.MAGIC 7.VINNIE JOHNSON 8.DOMINIQUE WILKINS 9.GHEORGE MURESAN 10.D-WADE 11.SHAWN KEMP 12.(tie)HARDAWAY GSW(pre ’93) and HARDAWAY ORL(pre ’97) 14.CALDWELL JONES 15.HAKEEM OLAJUWON 16.BARON DAVIS(’07 playoffs) 17.GRANT HILL(pre 2000) 18.MOOCHIE NORRIS 19.DARVIN HAM 20.BILL LAIMBEER 21.KURT RAMBIS 22.BIRDMAN 23.LEBRON 24.KEVIN JOHNSON 24.DRAZEN PETROVIC 25.JOHN STARKS 26.RASHEED WALLACE(in POR) 27.LARRY BIRD 28.IVERSON 29.PIPPIN 30.JASON WILLIAMS(in SAC) 31.GARY PAYTON(in SEA) 32.KOBE(should be higher but I hate him) 33.ALONZO MOURNING 34.LARRY JOHNSON(pre ’95) 35.MANU GINOBILI 36.MONTA ELLIS 37.DAVID WOOD 38.PAUL MILSAP 39.RON ARTEST 40.KEITH JENNINGS 41.PATRICK EWING 42.RICHARD DUMAS(’93 PHX) 43.ANTHONY MASON 44.DAVID ROBINSON(pre Hakeem dunk) 45.MUGSY BOGUES 46.VERNON MAXWELL 47.KEVIN DURANT 48.CLIFF ROBINSON 49.BEN WALLACE(pre ’05) 50.LEROY SMITH THE ULTIMATE MASTIVATOR!!!!!!!!!!

  • http://myspace.com ryan matias

    whats the poster?

  • Ben S

    How did Iverson end up 39th on your list? You have mostly unathletic guys from the 60′s above him. Until a few years ago he was being called the best player in the league. So how you have Kobe at 12th and Iverson at 39th not to mention Jason Kidd and Kevin Garnett ahead of him blows my mind. Considering a couple years ago you wrote an article saying Nash was better then kid but then putting Kidd way higher then Nash things do not add up. I would think you would give more love to AI you didn’t mention all the games he played injured instead you thought it was more fitting to mention his “Career defining interview”. Considering what type of double teams and abuse he took from players fans and media and being one of the most popular players ever he would be at least in the top 20

  • BIG Z

    i only meant that cp3 was a better than AI iverson is easily one of the top 15!! players of all time THE MOST DECADENT CAREER OF ANY PLAYER EVER!!!!

  • BIG Z

    a better
    POINT GUARD THAN AI

  • DG

    still havent got mine in the box cant wait tho

  • jason

    AWWWWWWWWWWWWWW!! WHEN WILL I GET MY MAG!! I have subscribed for 2 months and I still don’t get anything.. this isn’t fair.. I feel like I’ve been scammed

  • Pardeep

    The list came out? IVERSONS 39th. WOW!. Slam blew it on this one.

  • Pardeep

    Blew it Slam. Wow. First you put him 18th on the list top 50 at the start of the year before he got traded. NOW you put him 39th all time. Somebodys got a nasty trash talk letter coming. WOW. Youd think someone who has 12 covers would get some more respect. Im disgusted.

  • Pingback: SLAM ONLINE | » Links: SLAM goes Nutzz

  • Aaron

    Magic 6th?!?!?!?!

  • Aaron

    Bird 9th!?!?!?!?!

  • Aaron

    Shaq 4th!?!?!?!

  • Paul M. Castillo

    Has this mag even been released

  • ?

    PLEASE PLAY NYC STREETBALL THIS SUMMER BOOGER THE GAME MISSES YOU

  • Tom Calarco

    Bird was a skilled shooter with good teammates, and that’s about it? … Ha-Ha. Guess you never saw Bird play.

    Probably along with Magic and Bob Cousy, the greatest passer to ever play the game. He made passes that were more unbelievable than any of the Dr’s dunks or MJ’s acrobatic moves. And he had an uncanny instinct for the game. Remember that last second steal of the inbounds by Isaiah to beat the Pistons in the playoffs. In a matter of seconds he stole the ball, turned and found the cutter, Dennis Johnson, for a layup as the buzzer sounded.

  • OB-30

    Good work son

  • UKBLU8

    I just got my ish today…list looks pretty good but theres a HUUUGGGEE MISTAKE… I dnt know if its a misprint or what but the EDs left one of the top 10 greats off the list… “Pistol Pete” Maravich?????!!! u may have heard of him…considering there was no 3 pt line for one of the greatest shooters to have ever stepped on the hardwood during his time and nobody will come close to sniffin his NCAA scoring mark without averaging 40+ ppg for their career…oh and he did it n only 3 yrs at LSU…3600+ pts, 44+ppg avg in college… 5 time NBA All Star, 2 time All NBA 1st team24+ppg career in the L…made the NBA top 50 in 96 when it was released…Hornets and Jazz retired his number…he was one of the NBA’s original showmen and brought entertainment to the L while putting butts in seats.. if it werent for alcoholism which ultimately probably killed him at age 40 as he died of a heartattack…fittingly playing a game of pickup basketball, the Pistol would be josteling around with Wilt, Bill, and Shaq amongst the top of this list…

  • http://www.twitter.com/TheDiesel Anton

    Very disappointing issue, I was hoping it would have a 50 Cent feature.

  • nick

    Just got 130 and gotta say the cover is sweet. But your top 50 is not cool at all. I respect Tim Duncan for being a consistent player the past dozen years, but if he is the 8th greatest player of all time, Sylvester Stalone is the greatest actor of all time. To put Tim “The Machine” Duncan above The Black Mamba is embarassing and hurts my feelings. The only thing Duncan has more of is ONE more championship and ONE more crying to the ref face than Kobe. Honestly, Kevin Garnett has been a more influential player and has won a championship as well. He should have been in the top 20. The only things you got right in the top 5 were Jordan at 1 and Wilt at 2. Shaq would EAT Bill Russell and Bird and Magic must be top 5. Kobe is top 10 and could be top 5 in the next 5 years. So next time you make a top 50, give me a call.

  • BIG Z

    pistol pete is not one of the greatest 50 NBA players of all time. since ’96 there has been kobe, duncan, garnett,lebron, j kidd, nash, d wade and dirk. maybe pistol pete is the greatest college player off all time he was a GREAT nba player

  • BIG Z

    BUT TOP 50

  • BIG Z

    would anyone agree that 61- 62 season was incredible. wilt averaged 50 & 22 big O avg. 31 12 &11 baylor avg. 38 & 16 rookie walt bellamy avg. 31 & 19 and the mvp was bill russell ( 18.9 23.6)

  • BIG Z

    ALLEN IVERSON RULES!!!!!!!!!!

  • BIG Z

    ALLEN IVERSON RULES!!!!!!!!!!

  • Mark Przybylkiewicz

    Cant wait to read this in like 6 months when it comes out here in Australia. Also seeing as he dont play no more and still gets covers. Put My fave player Mailman on the cover

  • Mark Przybylkiewicz

    you put MJ as number 1 fair enough but i dont agree. Kareem Abdul Jabbar is GOAT 6 championships 6 MVPs and all time leading scorer with that awesome sky hook how can you go wrong. MJ only had 5 MVPs

  • J.J. Shah

    LeBron #42?????? you guys got Duncan at 8! LeBron is a single digit anyday. Lemme break it down.

    Shooting- LeBron is nailing down the jump shot now, and can shoot long range. He can make insane lay ups, and if he doesn’t he can swish 3 or pull up for a little short range jumper. Duncan is not bad, but can’t hit a shot from downtown, that shot in the playoffs was a lucky shot. he has a little short range shot that he rarly takes, inside he can score.
    OVERALL-KING JAMES BEATS DUNCAN

    Defence- King James is getting better every year. he can guard guards or forwards, hell he can even play center. LeBron can block shots, steal the ball, and pick off passes. Duncan is a wild beast down low, he can stuff and pick off passes. he cannot get out of the paint though, guards are to fast.
    OVERALL-TIED,BECAUSE LEBRON IS GOOD EVERY WHERE AND DUNCAN IS AMAZING IN THE PAINT.

    Passing- LeBron averages like 6-7 assists per game he is a dominent force because if his opponents have to stop they have to double or triple team him. that just gives shot for his teammates. Duncan, passing just isn’t his thing.
    OVERALL- OBVIOUSLY THE KING

    Championships, MVPS, etc.- LeBron got an MVP up his sleve and will get a lot more. He is aiming for a championship. Duncan got everything, but will not get another ring, or MVP.
    OVERALL-DUNCAN WINS THIS MATCH EASILY.

    I respect Duncan being ranked high, but he should be about 10 or 11 and King James should be 8 or 9.
    He should be 8 or 9 because he is compared to Kobe and some people think he is better than Kobe. there should not be a 30 rank difference between them.

  • J.J. Shah

    Where is CP3 and D-WADE?????????

  • Pardeep

    Yall blew it with A.I.

  • luke

    Agreed with Jukai on a majority of his points..until he made the schoolboy error and spelt Dwayne instead of Dwyane..thought you were supposed to be an avid nba fan dude?Come on..

  • Frank

    Kobe is the best palyer i’ve ever seen(i didn’t Jordan play at all so i can’t comment on him) and it’s unfair to kobe to compair him to Jordan. I mean why are we comparing him to the GOAT when he just wan’t to be Kobe and only be recongized for his accoplihsments. He didn’t say oh look at me i’m the next jordan. He stated many times that he didn’t want to be compared to Jordan. Just give him credit for what he accoplished in his career so far. he still has about 6 more good years left in him. When his career is done then you could start comparing.

  • ADM

    SLAM came up with a top 75 list about 5 years ago, here are the top 20 from that list:

    1.Michael Jordan
    2.Wilt Chamberlain
    3.Oscar Robertson
    4.Bill Russell
    5.Magic Johnson
    6.Larry Bird
    7.Kareem-Abdul Jabbar
    8.Jerry West
    9.Shaquille O’Neal
    10.Julius Erving
    11.Elgin Baylor
    12. Hakeem Olajuwon
    13.Karl Malone
    14.Bob Petitt
    15.John Havlicek
    16.Moses Malone
    17.Isiah Thomas
    18.John Stockton
    19.Charles Barkley
    20.Walt Frazier

    Now their revised top 20 (out of 50) are:

    1) Michael Jordan
    2) Wilt Chamberlain
    3) Bill Russell
    4) Shaquille O’Neal
    5) Oscar Robertson
    6) Magic Johnson
    7) Kareem Abdul Jabbar
    8) Tim Duncan
    9) Larry Bird
    10) Jerry West
    11) Elgin Baylor
    12) Kobe Bryant
    13) Hakeem Olajuwon
    14) Bob Pettit
    15) Julius Erving
    16) Moses Malone
    17) John Havlicek
    18) Karl Malone
    19) Isiah Thomas
    20) Charles Barkley

    How does Oscar Robertson rank ABOVE Bill Russell five years ago, and now ranks BELOW Bill Russell? Have either of these two played an NBA game within the past five years that would reverse their rankings?

    Kareem now ranks ABOVE Larry Bird, but 5 years ago, he was BELOW Larry Bird…again, netiher guy has played an NBA game in nearly 20 years.

    Elgin Baylor is now better than Julius Erving, but that wasn’t the case five years ago…why not?

    This is why magazines like this are a joke. There are other switches among non-active players as well. I can see if they want to move an active player up or down the list, but why should the relative positions of long-retired players be reversed?

    I obviously will have no beef with the players that are selected, picking the top 50 or 75 doesn’t require much in the way of brains… but why switch the positions (relative to each other) of long-retired players?

  • larrylegend

    Dear SLAM,
    R U KIDDING ME/US!?!?!?!?
    today slam #130 arrived at my house, in europe. sure, 1st thing to read was your new TOP50 list, i saved this as long as i got the issue in my own hands. 1st, you put mchale on 26., and left out the chief and dennis johnson? what the F? ok, different perspectives, i can get over it, although both belong in the top 50. but 2 things i couldn’t get over: kareem 20 seasons, the most ever by a player???? what r u smoking? kareem 20seasons, 1560 games, parish 21seasons, 1611games. what is more?
    second, barkley has 2 (two) gold medals, 1992/1996! not one as written…
    sorry, but i had to say this, AND i want an answer.
    loyal reader since SLAM #1

  • Pingback: SLAM ONLINE | » The New Top 50

  • andrew

    dunkan better than kobe?
    shaq better than magic and bird?
    garnett?
    iverson?

  • Aaron j.

    Allen Iverson is a monster on the court….
    Ya’ll can’t tell me he didn’t accomplish:
    Getting rookie of the year,
    Getting rookie of year for the all- star game,
    NBA MVP 01′,
    2x NBA All-Star Game MVP,
    4x NBA Scoring Champion,
    too many all-star appearance,
    Sold alot of shoes for Reebok must i say
    has a life-time contract with them also,
    and has sold too many mags for “SLAM” lol dont believe me ask Slam!

  • Aaron j.

    Must i go on…. Slam keep listing A.I. you guys have a great chemistry togther and people love the covers. By the way the this ISH#130 cover. keep it up. I’m a big fan.

  • Helmut Hohenegger

    I have once again not received mine…hope it will arrive this week!

  • JL

    What happen to Pistol Pete? He can easily take out Kidd or Nash on the list.

  • Mike

    I saw the top 50 players article. Omitting Pistol Pete Maravich from that list is a joke.
    He’s definitely better than Jason Kidd and a few others on that list!

  • Pingback: SLAM ONLINE | » Original Old School: A New York Tradition

  • Abdul

    WDFFFFFF
    GARBAGE LIST
    WELL I WOULDT CARE

  • Abdul

    YOU GUYS FORGET
    WADEEEEEEEEEEE
    HES THE BEST IN THE LEAGUE OR AMONGST KOB’ LIKE REAL TALK DID YOU FORGET HIS CAREER?
    ITS JUST AS GOOD AS LEBRON OR BETTER
    HE SHULD BE #1 AND WHEN BOSH COMES DOWN TO MIAMI IF THEY HAVE THE ROOM NEXT SUMMER

    3 RINGS
    2 MORE FINALS MVP
    1 MVP 2 MAX.
    1 DPOY (NEXT YEAR)

    AND THEN HE’S TOP 10 MATERIAL
    1 SLAM MAGAZINE

  • DG

    just one complaint….wheres james worthy??

  • freezin

    you guys missed out big….WHERES SHAWN BRADLEY!!?!??!

  • george

    Sorry for all the above guys but u r talking about iverson,wade and etc.
    Where is PIPPEN?second only to MJ.
    Learn nba history pls and then come and comment..

  • Pingback: SLAM ONLINE | » A Thin Line Between Love and Hate

  • http://www.onitsukatigermexico66.us onitsuka tiger

    michael jordan should be the best one in the basketball world, at any time and where i think. Hope every fan support my idea. many thanks

Advertisement