The Top Ten NBA Players In The Post-Jordan Era

Recently, the argument of the Jordan era as the best in basketball surfaced, and it is hard to argue with anyone who agrees with that. The Jordan era revitalized the NBA and made it more stable and fun to watch. If you think of the best twenty players in the history of the game, they probably played in the Jordan era (with a few exceptions, of course).

However, the NBA hasn’t been left for dead since the retirement of Michael Jordan. In fact, I am positive that I can name ten players in the post-Jordan era that can be held in just as high praise as the players from that particular time.

When putting together this list, I took into consideration a lot of factors. The first is value to the team. I also considered statistics, longevity, winning, and, of course, playoff performance. Take a look at the list:

10. Chris Webber

Most people don’t remember how good Chris Webber was before the micro-fracture surgery. Chris Webber was destined to win that elusive title in Sacramento but he was usually derailed by the Lakers. Many times, the Lakers were aided by the officials. Chris Webber outplayed Shaq on several occasions, and he made his supporting cast of Mike Bibby, Doug Christie, Vlade Divac, and Bobby Jackson look like contenders and, many times, even stars. Webber was a walking 20-10-5 machine.

9. Steve Nash

Steve Nash was the best player and point guard in the league for two seasons. He carried the Suns to more wins than they could ever imagine. He would be a little higher on the list if he would have won a title. Many people question whether or not he should have won those MVPs over Kobe Bryant. I don’t question it, because the man was doing things with players that most of us wouldn’t pick up on our fantasy team if they were available in free agency.

8. LeBron James

He might not be the most well-liked player in the league, and it's been well documented that he's yet to win an NBA title. That doesn't change the fact that Lebron James is an absolutely fantastic basketball player with plenty of time to become even better.

If you needed to make a big shot to win a game tonight, you probably wouldn't pick LeBron, but you might not have picked Kobe at the age of 27 either.

7. Paul Pierce

Pierce’s career is probably the most underrated as a professional player that I can remember. He has flourished in a market that calls and demands greatness. He is often criticized for being soft and, often times, he is hated by the fans, but the reality of the matter is that Pierce has been one of the best players in the NBA for many years. He scores, he defends, and he passes the ball.

6. Dirk Nowitzki

It took Dirk about two years to hit his stride, and then he ran off 11 consecutive seasons in which he averaged over 20 points per game. Dirk won the 2006-2007 NBA MVP award when he averaged almost 25 ppg and nine boards per game. I remember telling people when he first started in the league that he would be the best European player that ever played in the NBA.  He is a seven-foot power forward with shooting guard abilities.

He's a four-time first-team all-NBA player, and last year, he hoisted the Dallas Mavericks on his shoulders and led them to their first NBA title.

5. Kevin Garnett

When you look at the complete body of work, there is no doubt that KG deserves to be on this list. The man revolutionized the power forward position. In an era of dominant power forwards, KG was only outshined by Tim Duncan. KG is a superior defender and scorer. He had the ability to handle the ball and run the offense, if necessary. He also was a rebounding machine. Not many players can do what KG has been able to do for such a long period of time. The man is a model of greatness.

4. Allen Iverson

His startling 26.7 points per game average ranks right up there with some of the greatest. However, Iverson's value, more than any other player on this list, can hardly be explained through statistics. Iverson inspired in a way others could not. You had to respect him regardless of his size. His relentless escapades into the land of the trees, and his ability to finish among these giants invoked a sense of confidence and swagger into those early Philly teams, allowing them to overachieve. His career may not have ended the way he would have liked, but there was no doubt that Iverson was one of a kind on the basketball court.

3. Shaquille O’Neal

Shaq amassed four rings in the period following Jordan's 1998 finals victory over the Utah Jazz. Seven times since 1998, he led the NBA in field-goal percentage. In the 1999-2000 season, he averaged almost 30 points per game and 13.6 rebounds per game. The modern era of basketball will probably never see another Shaquille O’Neal. Then again, I could be wrong as we thought we would never see another Wilt Chamberlain; next thing I know, Shaq showed up.

2. Tim Duncan

Never has a player done more with less.Duncan might be the best power forward ever.Duncan is a devastating mix of low-post scoring prowess, tough defense and consistency. The future Hall of Famer has won four rings, two league MVPs and three finals MVP awards. For ten straight seasons, he averaged almost 20 points per game, over ten rebounds and over two blocks per game.

Look at a list of players with three or more rings. (Duncan has four.) Most of the players have at least one other Hall of Fame lock in their prime playing alongside them. Duncan cant say that, although Parker or Ginobili may be playing their way to that status.

1.  Kobe Bryant

Honestly, you could have placed Bryant at two and Duncan at one, and most people couldn’t argue against it. The only reason Kobe is number one in my eyes is because he has maintained his dominance more consistently, as Duncan has had a few down years that made you question why he was still balling. Also, the fact that Kobe started at such a young age makes him more dominant to me.

You can argue that Duncan has done more with less, and you would be correct, but you can’t hold Kobe accountable for the years when he was young and discovering himself in the league. If you were to ask most people who is the most dominant player since Jordan, most people would say Kobe Bryant.

You may not agree with the order, but it's hard to argue with the list. If there are any players that you thought should be up there that are missing, then fire away in the comments section.

Stay Breezy ~ I’m Out!

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