Author Topic: What's your NBA Mount Rushmore?  (Read 1884 times)

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Re: What's your NBA Mount Rushmore?
« Reply #15 on: November 08, 2019, 11:04:38 AM »

Offline Moranis

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Wilt, Lebron, MJ, Kareem

That 4th pick is tough though as I can see very strong arguments for Magic, Bill, and Oscar.  At the end of the day given just how long Kareem played at such a high level I think you have to put him on Mount Rushmore.  I think Bird is 8th all time with Hakeem 9th and Shaq 10th. 

So for me in order

Wilt
Lebron
MJ
Kareem
Magic
Bill
Oscar
Larry
Hakeem
Shaq
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Re: What's your NBA Mount Rushmore?
« Reply #16 on: November 08, 2019, 11:05:20 AM »

Offline slamtheking

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Easy (green glasses off): Bird, Russell, MJ, Wilt
pretty close to mine.  I'd sub Magic for MJ but MJ would be my 5th man if I could squeeze another head in there.

key characteristics: Russell, Bird and Magic made their entire teams better.  while each could dominate a game, they helped their teammates become great with unselfish play.  After that, I add Wilt as the ultimate dominant player when looking at what they themselves accomplished.  MJ would be second in that regard IMHO.  (I also slight Jordan a bit due to him being really the first player to enjoy the superstar treatment where he never had to really worry about fouling out of a game once he became the league's mealticket after Bird and Magic left the game.)

Re: What's your NBA Mount Rushmore?
« Reply #17 on: November 08, 2019, 11:07:13 AM »

Offline Csfan1984

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Wilt, greatest force ever.
Jordan, ultimate competitor.
Russell, best leader ever.
LeBron, best accolades+numbers combination.

Hate LeBron but he deserves to be in.
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Re: What's your NBA Mount Rushmore?
« Reply #18 on: November 08, 2019, 11:07:53 AM »

Offline Somebody

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Real answer:

Russell, because he is the league's greatest winner. Also, because he was so innovative. First black coach. First black leader of a team. And a major advocate for civil rights. And he was also one of the greatest rebounders and defenders ever.

Bird and Magic because besides the talent and accomplishes, they led the NBA out of the disaster that was 1970's basketball with there being two leagues and rampant cocaine and other drug problems affecting the game. They saved basketball. Ratings soared, as did revenue and basketball overtook hockey and baseball as the country's 2nd most popular sport. All because of Larry and Magic. They were that influential.

Then, of course, Michael who took everything from Larry and Magic and built on it. He also became the best player ever. The greatest shoe salesman ever(after Bird and Magic started the basketball shoes revolution and branding). And a culture changer.

Those are your NBA Mount Rushmore players, because reaching those heights means more than just counting stats.
That's a great list based on your criteria, but I disagree about your swipe at statistic based evaluations being purely counting stat based - the use of impact metrics that actually attempt to tease out how a player affects the scoreboard have been gaining popularity the past decade. These statistics are hardly just counting stats, they're literally trying to quantify what Russell said in his statement about the "other 45 minutes of the game". Obviously there are massive outliers in such metrics (as with any other statistic), but you can form a very convincing list when you use those stats as a tool to aid what you see on the basketball court.
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Re: What's your NBA Mount Rushmore?
« Reply #19 on: November 08, 2019, 11:09:18 AM »

Offline CptZoogs

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Russell, Kareem, Jordan, Magic and Bird

I really can't separate Magic and Bird, they're so much a part of each other's story and also the story of the 80s in the NBA. Both retired too soon compared to their talent and peers historically because of injury/disease as well.

I had precisely the same thought regarding Bird and Magic.  How do you pick one and not the other?  They were so interconnected in terms of their performance and what they did for the league.

That said, if I had to choose 4, I would probably go with Russel, Kareem, MJ, Lebron.  In terms of historical debates though, I think you really have to go generation by generation.  The game has changed so drastically over the years.

Re: What's your NBA Mount Rushmore?
« Reply #20 on: November 08, 2019, 11:12:06 AM »

Offline Somebody

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Wilt, Lebron, MJ, Kareem

That 4th pick is tough though as I can see very strong arguments for Magic, Bill, and Oscar.  At the end of the day given just how long Kareem played at such a high level I think you have to put him on Mount Rushmore.  I think Bird is 8th all time with Hakeem 9th and Shaq 10th. 

So for me in order

Wilt
Lebron
MJ
Kareem
Magic
Bill
Oscar
Larry
Hakeem
Shaq
Excellent list! I have Bird and Magic in the 10th and 11th slots in my list - they're in a range of their own imo due to their relatively big lead over the next few players after them, but lack the longevity to surpass the players in the 5-9 range. But honestly the difference between players isn't really huge when you get into the top 15-20, you can conceivably have Bird and Magic in the top 10 by changing your criteria a bit.
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Re: What's your NBA Mount Rushmore?
« Reply #21 on: November 08, 2019, 11:18:47 AM »

Offline nickagneta

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Real answer:

Russell, because he is the league's greatest winner. Also, because he was so innovative. First black coach. First black leader of a team. And a major advocate for civil rights. And he was also one of the greatest rebounders and defenders ever.

Bird and Magic because besides the talent and accomplishes, they led the NBA out of the disaster that was 1970's basketball with there being two leagues and rampant cocaine and other drug problems affecting the game. They saved basketball. Ratings soared, as did revenue and basketball overtook hockey and baseball as the country's 2nd most popular sport. All because of Larry and Magic. They were that influential.

Then, of course, Michael who took everything from Larry and Magic and built on it. He also became the best player ever. The greatest shoe salesman ever(after Bird and Magic started the basketball shoes revolution and branding). And a culture changer.

Those are your NBA Mount Rushmore players, because reaching those heights means more than just counting stats.
That's a great list based on your criteria, but I disagree about your swipe at statistic based evaluations being purely counting stat based - the use of impact metrics that actually attempt to tease out how a player affects the scoreboard have been gaining popularity the past decade. These statistics are hardly just counting stats, they're literally trying to quantify what Russell said in his statement about the "other 45 minutes of the game". Obviously there are massive outliers in such metrics (as with any other statistic), but you can form a very convincing list when you use those stats as a tool to aid what you see on the basketball court.
When determining the greatest that is on the Mount Rushmore, IMO, you want guys that did more than just ball. You want guys that changed the league for the better and did so in ways off the court as well.

It's fine to say LeBron is a better basketball player than Bird or Magic, but to be on Mount Rushmore of the NBA??? Bird and Magic completely changed the way basketball was played and perceived in this country. Ratings took off and better TV deals happened because of Bird and Magic. Shoe branding with Converse started with these guys. They saved the game. So because of that, I don't care that some advanced stats might say there are slightly better players than Bird and Magic, they weren't more important to the game.

Re: What's your NBA Mount Rushmore?
« Reply #22 on: November 08, 2019, 11:21:42 AM »

Offline RPGenerate

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Easy. MJ, Kareem, Lebron, and Wilt. If I would add more, Magic and Larry would be next.
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Re: What's your NBA Mount Rushmore?
« Reply #23 on: November 08, 2019, 11:24:11 AM »

Offline Jvalin

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Russell - Bird - Magic - Jordan

- Russell dominated the NBA in the 50's-60's winning 11 rings in 13 years. No way he misses out.

- Bird and Magic dominated the 80's. Imo Magic > Bird, but I'd still include both of them cause they transformed the league. Magic and Bird made the NBA what it is today.

- Jordan dominated the league in the 90's.

I was tempted to put LeBron over Bird in order to have one player from each era, but meh. If LeBron wins 1-2 more rings, maybe I 'll change my mind.

For what it's worth, these would be my GOAT candidates:

1. Magic (imo he's the GOAT)
2-8 (in random order)
Russell
Wilt
Kareem
Oscar Robertson
Bird
Jordan
LeBron

Re: What's your NBA Mount Rushmore?
« Reply #24 on: November 08, 2019, 11:26:30 AM »

Offline Somebody

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Real answer:

Russell, because he is the league's greatest winner. Also, because he was so innovative. First black coach. First black leader of a team. And a major advocate for civil rights. And he was also one of the greatest rebounders and defenders ever.

Bird and Magic because besides the talent and accomplishes, they led the NBA out of the disaster that was 1970's basketball with there being two leagues and rampant cocaine and other drug problems affecting the game. They saved basketball. Ratings soared, as did revenue and basketball overtook hockey and baseball as the country's 2nd most popular sport. All because of Larry and Magic. They were that influential.

Then, of course, Michael who took everything from Larry and Magic and built on it. He also became the best player ever. The greatest shoe salesman ever(after Bird and Magic started the basketball shoes revolution and branding). And a culture changer.

Those are your NBA Mount Rushmore players, because reaching those heights means more than just counting stats.
That's a great list based on your criteria, but I disagree about your swipe at statistic based evaluations being purely counting stat based - the use of impact metrics that actually attempt to tease out how a player affects the scoreboard have been gaining popularity the past decade. These statistics are hardly just counting stats, they're literally trying to quantify what Russell said in his statement about the "other 45 minutes of the game". Obviously there are massive outliers in such metrics (as with any other statistic), but you can form a very convincing list when you use those stats as a tool to aid what you see on the basketball court.
When determining the greatest that is on the Mount Rushmore, IMO, you want guys that did more than just ball. You want guys that changed the league for the better and did so in ways off the court as well.

It's fine to say LeBron is a better basketball player than Bird or Magic, but to be on Mount Rushmore of the NBA??? Bird and Magic completely changed the way basketball was played and perceived in this country. Ratings took off and better TV deals happened because of Bird and Magic. Shoe branding with Converse started with these guys. They saved the game. So because of that, I don't care that some advanced stats might say there are slightly better players, Bird and Magic, they weren't more important to the game.
I just fundamentally disagree with that way of ranking players - I believe that a Mount Rushmore should rank players based on how good they were at their craft. You can obviously make a very good list by factoring in how certain players impacted the culture of basketball as well as the fortunes of the league, but that to me is a list of the most influential players in NBA history instead of the best players in NBA history. I couldn't care less about how certain players popularised a certain style in the league or how much did they do for league revenue just because they were playing in the right time to make such an influence on the league, I'd like the 4 guys who provided the most lift to teams throughout their entire career to be on the Mount Rushmore (or at least 4 guys who are close to being the 4 best, it's incredibly difficult to separate the best of the best) instead of another narrative driven list waxing lyrical on things outside of the basketball court. But your list is still a very good one, I appreciated it.
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Re: What's your NBA Mount Rushmore?
« Reply #25 on: November 08, 2019, 11:39:50 AM »

Offline PhoSita

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Magic, Bird, MJ, Duncan, LeBron


I know the mountain doesn't have 5 faces on it, but I feel like Bird and Magic count for one since they more or less shared that era.  Those five account for the major eras of the sport since the merger.


I know we can and should talk about Russell, Wilt, Kareem, Jerry West etc ... all great pre-merger players (Kareem was part of both).  I guess I just feel that the sport was so different, the league was so different, the talent pool was so different ... they belong in their own category.
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Re: What's your NBA Mount Rushmore?
« Reply #26 on: November 08, 2019, 11:50:53 AM »

Offline liam

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Cousy, Hondo, Bird, McHale, Russell

Re: What's your NBA Mount Rushmore?
« Reply #27 on: November 08, 2019, 12:32:49 PM »

Offline Ogaju

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No NBA Rushmaore without David Stern

Re: What's your NBA Mount Rushmore?
« Reply #28 on: November 08, 2019, 12:37:53 PM »

Offline gpap

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Had a discussion in another thread about how I believe that Bird isn't particularly close to being in the NBA Mount Rushmore, and I'd like to know which players you guys have in your top 4. I'm not very high on GOAT discussions, but when you start ranking players in ranges it gets interesting with so many great players in the history of the NBA.

Really? Because he's one of the first people I think of.

But to answer the question

Bill Russell, Larry Bird, Michael Jordan and Shaq.

Russell, Bird and Jordan for obvious reasons.

Shaq because in addition to his 3 championships, I've never seen a center dominate in my lifetime like him.

There's likely other guys who should strongly be in consideration, but that's who comes to mind based on what I've witnessed and then Bill Russell, because of his accomplishments.
Yeah he's really not close to being in it when I start comparing him to the other greats in NBA history, or at least imo. I like the inclusion of Shaq, even though he's not in my Mount Rushmore he's the closest player to my top 4. His apex was legendary, no centre save for Kareem dominated on offense like him (and even then Kareem was a rung down from peak Shaq), and his defense during his peak wasn't too shabby either!

Interesting. I just think Bird is one of the 4 greatest because of how cerebral he was. He wasn't the most athletic guy, but he knew the game like the back of his hand and was probably the most fundamentally sound player you'll ever see.

No flashy dunks, no fancy offensive or defensive milestones (though he had plenty)....just a guy who was a basketball aficionado.

Re: What's your NBA Mount Rushmore?
« Reply #29 on: November 08, 2019, 12:43:29 PM »

Offline Moranis

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Real answer:

Russell, because he is the league's greatest winner. Also, because he was so innovative. First black coach. First black leader of a team. And a major advocate for civil rights. And he was also one of the greatest rebounders and defenders ever.

Bird and Magic because besides the talent and accomplishes, they led the NBA out of the disaster that was 1970's basketball with there being two leagues and rampant cocaine and other drug problems affecting the game. They saved basketball. Ratings soared, as did revenue and basketball overtook hockey and baseball as the country's 2nd most popular sport. All because of Larry and Magic. They were that influential.

Then, of course, Michael who took everything from Larry and Magic and built on it. He also became the best player ever. The greatest shoe salesman ever(after Bird and Magic started the basketball shoes revolution and branding). And a culture changer.

Those are your NBA Mount Rushmore players, because reaching those heights means more than just counting stats.
That's a great list based on your criteria, but I disagree about your swipe at statistic based evaluations being purely counting stat based - the use of impact metrics that actually attempt to tease out how a player affects the scoreboard have been gaining popularity the past decade. These statistics are hardly just counting stats, they're literally trying to quantify what Russell said in his statement about the "other 45 minutes of the game". Obviously there are massive outliers in such metrics (as with any other statistic), but you can form a very convincing list when you use those stats as a tool to aid what you see on the basketball court.
When determining the greatest that is on the Mount Rushmore, IMO, you want guys that did more than just ball. You want guys that changed the league for the better and did so in ways off the court as well.

It's fine to say LeBron is a better basketball player than Bird or Magic, but to be on Mount Rushmore of the NBA??? Bird and Magic completely changed the way basketball was played and perceived in this country. Ratings took off and better TV deals happened because of Bird and Magic. Shoe branding with Converse started with these guys. They saved the game. So because of that, I don't care that some advanced stats might say there are slightly better players than Bird and Magic, they weren't more important to the game.
They changed rules to account for Wilt.  MJ became the first global icon of the sport.  Lebron has taken MJ's iconness to new levels especially his use of social media, his media empire, etc.  This idea that the other great players didn't effectuate change is just strange to me.  So elevating inferior players for those reasons also seems strange to me. 
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