© Pool Photo-USA TODAY Sports
This week the fine people at ESPN went through every NBA franchise and picked five players they think would make the team’s best all-time starting lineup. Only the accomplishments that a player had during their time with that franchise were considered.
Nick Friedell had the tough task of picking five Warriors players. Some of the best players in the history of the sport have donned the blue and gold, as the franchise has seen championships in three different decades of basketball.
It’s a challenging exercise from the start. Do you pick the five players who have the best career stats? Do you pick five you think would play together the best? What’s the best way to weight accomplishments from different eras of ball?
Ultimately he chose to roll with the four all-stars from the recent dynasty, and added Wilt Chamberlain at the center spot:
Guard: Stephen Curry
Guard: Klay Thompson
Forward: Kevin Durant
Forward: Draymond Green
Center: Wilt Chamberlain
That means A-List Hall of Famers Rick Barry and Chris Mullin are left on the outside. Here’s the explanation from the article:
“It’s tough leaving Hall of Famers Rick Barry and Chris Mullin out of this group, but who would come out? Curry and Thompson form the best shooting backcourt of all time. Durant is one of the best players of his generation and Green provides the defensive intensity and glue that has propelled them for years — plus those four already have played together.”
Pairing Wilt Chamberlain to the team’s four best players from the past few years would make arguably the best lineup in basketball history. Chamberlain averaged a pedestrian 41.5 points and 25.1 rebounds in six years with the Warriors.
What do you think of this team’s starting five? Too much recency bias? Not enough? (We also felt like Kevon Looney was disrespected.)
Either way, it’s a fun thought experiment. Especially if you have time on your hands.