NBA 75th Anniversary Team

Earlier this winter, the NBA 75th Anniversary Team was announced by a diverse group of selectors including members of the media, players (current and former), coaches and front office executives to honor the best professional basketball players since the league’s founding in 1946. A total of 76 players were honored as part of this year’s anniversary team, the fourth such list that has been compiled, with 25th (1971), 35th (1980) and 50th (1996) Anniversary teams having been released in the past. Of the 76 players, 11 remain active currently in the league. Broken down positionally, 16 centers, 29 forwards and 31 guards make up the list with the players spanning all eras since the NBA’s inception.

At forward were Anthony Davis, Tim Duncan, Kevin Garnett, Elvin Hayes, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Carmelo Anthony, Charles Barkley, Paul Arizin, Rick Barry, Elgin Baylor, Larry Bird, Billy Cunningham, Dave DeBusschere, Kevin Durant, Julius Erving, John Havlicek, Lebron James, Kawhi Leonard, Jerry Lucas, Karl Malone, Kevin McHale, Dirk Nowitzki, Bob Pettit, Paul Pierce, Scottie Pippen, Dennis Rodman, Dolph Schayes, Dominique Wilkins and James Worthy.

And finally, at guard: Ray Allen, Nate Archibald, Dave Bling, Kobe Bryant, Bob Cousy, Stephen Curry, Clyde Drexler, Walt Frazier, George Gervin, Hal Greer, James Harden, Allen Iverson, Magic Johnson, Sam Jones, Michael Jordan, Jason Kidd, Damian Lillard, Pete Maravich, Reggie Miller, Earl Monroe, Steve Nash, Chris Paul, Gary Payton, Oscar Robertson, Bill Sharman, Isiah Thomas, John Stockton, Dwyane Wade, Jerry West, Russell Westbrook and Lenny Wilkens

Below are a few highlighted players…

Hakeem Olajuwon played from 1984-2002, primarily with the Houston Rockets but in his final season, the Toronto Raptors. Olajuwon helped Houston to back-to-back NBA titles (1994, 1995) and in both series, was named NBA Finals MVP. The NBA’s MVP in 1994, he was a 12-time All-Star (1985-1990, 1992-1997) earning six All-NBA First-Team selections. A renowned rim defender, Olajuwon put his 7-foot frame to good use, winning consecutive NBA Defensive Player of the Year honors in 1993 and 1994.

Robert Parish‘s 21-year career saw him play an NBA-record 1,611 games (1976-1997) with the Golden State Warriors, Boston Celtics, Charlotte Hornets and Chicago Bulls. He won four NBA titles (1981, 1984, 1986, 1997) and was a nine-time All-Star (1981-1987, 1990, 1991). 

David Robinson spent his entire NBA career from 1989-2003 with the San Antonio Spurs, capturing NBA championships in 1999 and 2003. A 10-time All-Star (1990-1996, 1998, 2000, 2001), Robinson was named the league’s MVP in 1995. He was the NBA Defensive Player of the Year in 1992 and averaged a double-double of 21.1 points and 10.6 rebounds per game over the span of his career. 

Elvin Hayes played for the San Diego/Houston Rockets (1968-1972, 1981-1984) and Washington Bullets (1972-1981) during his 17-year NBA career, winning a championship in 1978. From 1969-1980, Hayes was named to 12 consecutive All-Star Games. He led the NBA in scoring in 1969 and in rebounding twice (1970, 1974), finishing his career with an average of 21.0 points and 12.5 rebounds per game. 

Bill Walton enjoyed a 15-year career from 1974-1988 with the Portland Trail Blazers, San Diego/L.A. Clippers and Boston Celtics, winning two NBA titles (1977, 1986) in the process.

Walton was named NBA Finals MVP with the Blazers in 1977 and won an NBA MVP trophy with the team the next year in 1978. An All-Star in both 1977 and 1978, Walton earned Sixth Man of the Year honors with Boston in 1986. Click here for information on how to book Bill Walton speaking engagements and appearances.  

Rick Barry‘s 16-year career from 1965-1980 was spent playing for the Golden State Warriors, New York Nets and Houston Rockets. An eight-time All-Star (1966, 1967, 1973-1978), Barry was instrumental in helping the Warriors to an NBA championship in 1975, a year in which he averaged over 30 points per game. Barry was named the NBA Finals MVP for his efforts and before the NBA/ABA merger in 1976, captured an ABA title in 1969. 

Julius Erving played for the Philadelphia 76ers from 1976-1987 and previously, in the ABA for the New York Nets (1973-1976). Erving was named ABA MVP three straight times from 1974-1976 and won two ABA championships in 1974 and 1976. His NBA career was also full of accolades, including a championship (1983) and 11 consecutive All-Star appearances from 1977-1987. Click here for information on how to book Julius Erving appearances and speaking engagements.

Kevin McHale is a 14-year NBA veteran who played with the Boston Celtics (1980-1993), winning three NBA titles with the team (1981, 1984, 1986). He was a seven-time All-Star (1984, 1986-1991) and was named to three NBA All-Defensive First Teams from 1986-1988. He won back-to-back NBA Sixth Man of the Year honors in 1984 and 1985.

Paul Pierce played primarily for the Boston Celtics but also the Brooklyn Nets, Washington Wizards and L.A. Clippers in a 20-year career that spanned from 1998-2017. A 10-time All-Star (2002-2006, 2008-2012), Pierce led Boston to victory in the 2008 NBA Finals, of which he was named MVP. 

Larry Bird played his entire 14-year career from 1979-1992 with the Boston Celtics, assuming a central role for the teams that went on to win NBA titles in 1981, 1984 and 1986. Bird was named NBA Finals MVP in 1984 and 1986 and in three straight years from 1984-1986, was named the league’s regular season MVP. He was a 12-time All-Star (1980-1988, 1990-1992). Click here for information on how to book Larry Bird speaking engagements and appearances.  

Scottie Pippen was a key member of the Chicago Bulls dynasty of the 1990s and during his time with the team from 1987-1998, Chicago won six NBA titles (1991-1993, 1996-1998). Pippen was named to seven All-Star games (1990, 1992-1997) and later played for the Houston Rockets and Portland Trail Blazers. He averaged 16.4 points and 6.4 rebounds throughout his career.

James Worthy spent his entire 13-year career from 1982-1994 with the L.A. Lakers, during which time he won three NBA championships (1985, 1987, 1988). During the 1988 playoffs, Worthy started all 24 games for the Lakers, averaging 21.1 points per game and eventually winning NBA Finals MVP honors. From 1986-1992, he was named to seven consecutive All-Star Games. 

Ray Allen played from 1996-2013 with the Milwaukee Bucks, Seattle Supersonics, Boston Celtics and Miami Heat. He won NBA titles in 2008 and 2013, first with Boston and later with the Heat. Allen was renowned for three-point shooting throughout his playing days; his record for most career three-pointers stood until 2021. From 2000-2002, 2004-2009 and in 2011, Allen was named an NBA All-Star. He averaged 18.9 points per game over his 18-year career.

Clyde Drexler played from 1983-1998, primarily with the Portland Trail Blazers but for the last four seasons of his career, the Houston Rockets with whom he won an NBA championship in 1995. Drexler averaged 20.4 points per game in his career and was a 10-time All-Star (1986, 1988-1994, 1996, 1997). His # 22 jersey is retired by both Portland and Houston.

Walt Frazier enjoyed a 13-year NBA career from 1967-1979 with the New York Knicks and Cleveland Cavaliers. An All-Star in seven consecutive seasons from 1970-1976, Frazier led the Knicks to a pair of NBA titles in 1970 and 1973. Frazier was also named to the NBA All-Defensive First Team in seven straight years from 1969-1975. Click here for information on how to book Walt Frazier appearances and speaking engagements.

George Gervin played in the NBA from 1974-1986, mainly with the San Antonio Spurs. While with the Spurs, he was named an All-Star nine straight times from 1977-1985. Gervin was MVP of the All-Star Game in 1980 and led the NBA in scoring four times (1978-1980, 1982). He averaged 25.1 points per game throughout his career.

Magic Johnson spent his entire career (1979-1991, 1996) with the Los Angeles Lakers, winning five NBA championships with the team in 1980, 1982, 1985 1987 and 1988. A three-time league MVP (1987, 1989, 1990), Johnson similarly was named NBA Finals MVP three times (1980, 1982, 1987). He was a 12-time All-Star (1980, 1982-1992) and led the NBA in assists four times during his career. Click here for information on how to book Magic Johnson speaking engagements and appearances.  

Michael Jordan, widely regarded as the best basketball player of all-time, won six NBA championships (1991-1993, 1996-1998) during his 15-season career between 1984 and 2013.

Jordan was a 14-time All-Star and led the NBA in scoring in 10 separate seasons. His 30.1 points per game average during the regular season and 33.4 points per game playoffs average are NBA records. Jordan was named Finals MVP in each of six appearances and won a further five regular season MVP awards (1988, 1991, 1992, 1996, 1998).

Earl Monroe played for both the Baltimore Bullets and New York Knicks in his 14-year career from 1967-1980. A four-time All-Star (1969, 1971, 1975, 1977), Monroe averaged 15.5 points per game for the 1972-1973 season, leading the Knicks to an NBA title. He was the NBA Rookie of the Year in 1968. 

Steve Nash‘s career spanned from 1996-2015, primarily with the Phoenix Suns and Dallas Mavericks but also the L.A. Lakers. A point guard, Nash led the NBA in assists five times (2005-2007, 2010, 2011) and was named league MVP in back-to-back seasons in 2005 and 2006.

He was selected as an All-Star in eight seasons and in four seasons, produced a “50-40-90” campaign, recognizing a shooting percentage of at least 50%, at least 40% on three-point attempts and 90% or better on free throws.

Oscar Robertson played his 15-year NBA career from 1960-1974 with the Cincinnati Royals and Milwaukee Bucks. An All-Star in 12 straight seasons from 1961-1972, Robertson led the Bucks to an NBA title in 1971. He earned Rookie of the Year honors in 1961 and was named NBA MVP in 1964. Robertson also led the NBA in assists in six different seasons. 

SportsSpeakers 360 has been providing companies and organizations with access to thousands of athletes in all major sports for close to 25 years, including many of the legends on the NBA 75th Anniversary Team. If you’d like to book David Robinson, secure a Scottie Pippen speaking engagement or George Gervin appearance among others, please contact Sports Speakers 360 today!