Hey, we did it. We made it to No. 1.
Look, this year’s SLAM Top 50 list brought on a slew of debates. Those are fun; we’re here almost solely for that conversation.
But they’re over.
Not because we don’t want you to continue arguing about basketball players, but because we’ve arrived at the top of the list. And there’s no questioning the top of the list. Not at the moment.
LeBron James is the best basketball player on the planet. It’s been true for a while now—despite a couple of guys clawing at his spot over the past year or two—and it’s very, very true as you’re reading this, mere months removed from an epic Finals comeback that I still can’t believe actually happened.
Down 3-1 to the best regular season team in NBA history with the unanimous… etc. etc. etc. You know the story. Which is why I’m going to keep this short. Really, really short.
Most of this list requires explanations—“Here’s why this guy was ranked here, or “Here’s why I think he should be higher/lower.”
But this write-up doesn’t need such an explanation. If you watched basketball this past June, it was provided—almost force-fed—to you. Perhaps over the next year KD and/or Stephen will boost one another to a new height, or Russ or Harden will become such a one-man wrecking crew that one of them will make sense as the new No. 1, or some young gun like AD or KAT will meet his full potential and ascend all the way up. But that’s a conversation for next year. This year’s is over. We’ve reached the pinnacle, and the pinnacle, at this exact instant, is not up for debate.
LEBRON JAMES SLAM TOP 50 HISTORY
|SLAM Top 50 Players 2016|
Rankings are based on expected contribution in 2016-17—to players’ team, the NBA and the game.
Follow the entire SLAM Top 50 countdown.