The Blue Blood universities continue to breed the highest level of NBA talent. From MJ to KAT and everybody in between, the big schools pump out better players year by year.
However, some of the smaller schools provide fewer players, yet the players they produce are higher quality. Today I want to put that to the test, and see if I can build an 82-0 starting 5 with small school players.
This is not just about the best player on the board, but the team dynamic. Playmakers, shooters, rebounders, and defenders are welcome. This starting 5 has some all-time greats, and you may be surprised by the result.
PG – Steve Nash, Santa Clara
I could’ve picked John Stockton, but his case is much more confusing. He went to Gonzaga before it was a powerhouse, but that makes me stray from the pick.
Nash is one of the best passers and playmakers in history. An elite free throw shooter, an assist monster, and a 2x MVP is a perfect addition.
He doesn’t put up insane points and leaves room for his scoring teammates to succeed, but he’s clearly the best pick for the position. 7 seasons with double-digit assists always helps, and will make this team better.
SG – George Gervin, Eastern Michigan
The Iceman is one of the most legendary bucket-getters in NBA history. This man could shoot the mid-range, finish around the rim, and did it with flash.
A career 26 ppg and 51% from the field, Gervin was the man. He was the NBA scoring champion 4 times in his career and averaged over 30 on two separate occasions.
The pure finisher was the Spurs’ star player and still remains one of the best in franchise history. He will attract the defense and leave the perimeter open for the next player to light it up.
SF – Larry Bird, Indiana State
This one is pretty easy to explain. A career double-double with 6 assists, never dropped less than 20 ppg during an eligible season and is one of the most consistent shooters of all time.
Bird is undoubtedly a top-10 player of all time, and one of the players that revitalized the NBA. He is a welcome addition to the team, especially with his amazing touch and three-point shot.
PF – Karl Malone, Louisiana Tech
One of the most dominant rebounders and post forces in league history, there’s a reason the post delivery legend is nicknamed “The Mailman”. With career averages of 25 and 10, he is the best option for this position.
He is also a serviceable passer, averaging over 4 assists during 7 seasons of his career. He’s 3rd all-time in career points behind Kareem and LeBron, so it’s safe to say he’s perfect for the role.
C – David Robinson, Navy
This is our defensive talent right here. An avid scorer and rebounder, but he averaged 3 blocks per game for his entire career, putting him 7th all-time.
Tim Duncan before Tim Duncan, Robinson is one of the most dominant centers in history. Him covering our frontcourt loads our team defensively and gives us the incredible athlete we need.
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