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Top 5 Players of Each NBA Decade

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Top 5 Players of the 1950’s

5. Paul Arizin

Paul Arizin’s averages during the 1950’s: 23.0 PPG 8.9 RPG and 2.3 APG

Arizin was a Philadelphia Warrior who was an NBA Champion, 7x NBA All-Star, NBA All-Star Game MVP, 4x All-NBA Team member, and 2x NBA scoring champion.

4. Neil Johnston

Neil Johnston’s averages during the 1950’s: 19.4 PPG 11.3 RPG and 2.5 APG

Johnston only played 8 NBA seasons and started his career poorly with 6.0 PPG but he dramatically improved and ended his career with an NBA Championship, 6 NBA All-Star appearances, 5 All-NBA Team selections, and 3 scoring championships.

3. Dolph Shayes

Dolph Shayes’ averages during the 1950’s: 19.1 PPG 13.3 RPG and 3.1 APG

Dolph Shayes was an NBA champion, 9x NBA All-Star, 10x All-NBA Team member, and NBA rebounding leader. He was one of the most consistent players of the 1950’s.

2. Bob Cousy

Bob Cousy’s averages during the 1950’s: 19.4 PPG 7.4 APG and 5.9 RPG

Bob Cousy was one of the first stars in the NBA. He was an undersized played who still thrived and showed his all-around skill set. He is a 2x NBA champion, NBA MVP, 9x NBA All-Star, 2x NBA All-Star Game MVP, 8x All-NBA First Team member, and 7x NBA assists leader.

1. Bob Pettit

Bob Pettit’s averages during the 1950’s: 24.9 PPG 15.7 RPG and 2.6 APG

Bob Pettit is arguably the most famous player from the 1950’s and rightfully so. He played for the St. Louis Hawks and was an NBA champion, 2x NBA MVP, 5x NBA All-Star, 3x NBA All-Star Game MVP, 5x All-NBA First Team member, and 2x NBA scoring champion.

Top 5 Players of the 1960’s

5. Jerry West

Jerry West’s averages during the 1960’s: 27.5 PPG 6.5 RPG and 5.7 APG

Jerry West spent his entire career with the Los Angeles Lakers but could not win an NBA championship in the 1960’s. But he did find success along with his amazing statistics. West was an NBA Finals MVP, 9x NBA All-Star, 8x All-NBA Team member, and NBA All-Defensive Second Team member.

4. Elgin Baylor

Elgin Baylor’s averages during the 1960’s: 28.1 PPG 13.8 RPG and 4.3 APG

Jerry West was a fantastic player, but looking at both players stats it seems he was just a fantastic sidekick to Elgin Baylor. Besides his amazing statistics Elgin Baylor was also a 9x NBA All-Star.

3. Oscar Robertson

Oscar Robertson’s averages during the 1960’s: 29.7 PPG 10.5 APG and 8.7 RPG

Oscar Robertson was the most versatile player in NBA history. His ability to do everything great on the court was something new and transcending in the NBA. He was a NBA MVP, 9x NBA All-Star, 3x NBA All-Star Game MVP, 9x All-NBA First Team member, and 6x NBA assists leader.

2. Bill Russell

Bill Russell’s averages during the 1960’s: 14.8 PPG 22.6 RPG and 4.6 APG

Bill Russell’s stats were not the most impressive throughout the 1960’s but his success was something completely unmatched. He was a 9x NBA Champion, 4x NBA MVP, 10x NBA All-Star, NBA All-Star Game MVP, 9x All-NBA Team member, All-Defensive First Team member, and 2x NBA rebounding champion.

1. Wilt Chamberlain

Wilt Chamberlain’s averages during the 1960’s: 34.4 PPG 24.3 RPG and 4.5 APG

Wilt Chamberlain was clearly the most dominate force in the 1960’s. He set several NBA records including a 100 point game and averaged 50.4 PPG in a single season. He was an NBA champion, 4x NBA MVP, 10x NBA All-Star, NBA All-Star Game MVP, 9x All-NBA Team member, 7x NBA scoring champion, 8x NBA rebounding leader, 9x NBA field goal percentage leader, and NBA assist leader.

Top 5 Players of the 1970’s

5. Dave Cowens

Dave Cowens’ averages during the 1970’s: 18.6 PPG 14.6 RPG 4.0 APG 1.2 SPG and 1.0 BPG

Dave Cowens was a fantastic replacement for Bill Russell. He helped continue the Celtics success and even become the best player in the NBA for a season. He is a 2x NBA champion, NBA MVP, 7x NBA All-Star, NBA All-Star Game MVP, 3x All-NBA Second Team member, and 3x NBA All-Defensive Team member.

4. John Havlicek

John Havlicek’s averages during the 1970’s: 21.9 PPG 6.4 RPG 5.8 APG and 1.2 SPG

John Havlicek, Dave Cowens’ teammate, is one of the greatest small forwards of all-time. He won a total of eight championships (With the majority being won in the 1960’s). In the 1970’s he was a 2x NBA championships, NBA Finals MVP, 9x NBA All-Star, 7x All-NBA Team member, and 7x All-Defensive Team member.

3. Bob McAdoo

Bob McAdoo’s averages during the 1970’s: 27.4 PPG 12.2 RPG 2.8 APG 2.0 BPG and 1.2 SPG

Bob McAdoo wasn’t successful in terms on winning an NBA championship in the 1970’s but his averages speak for themselves. He was an NBA MVP, 5x NBA All-Star, 2x All-NBA Team member, and 3x NBA scoring champion.

 

2. Elvin Hayes

Elvin Hayes’ averages during the 1970’s: 23.2 PPG 14.2 RPG 2.5 BPG 2.1 APG and 1.2 SPG

Elvin Hayes was an NBA champion, 10x NBA All-Star, 6x All-NBA Team member, 2x All-Defensive Second Team member, NBA scoring champion, and 2x NBA rebounding leader.

1. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s averages during the 1970’s: 28.6 PPG 14.8 RPG 4.5 APG 3.5 BPG and 1.3 SPG

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is one of the greatest players in NBA history and his long lasting dominance started in the 1970’s. He was a NBA champion, NBA Finals MVP, 5x NBA MVP, 9x NBA All-Star, 9x All-NBA Team member, 8x NBA All-Defensive Team member, 2x NBA scoring champion, 3x NBA blocks leader, and NBA rebounding champion.

Top 5 Players of the 1980’s

5. Michael Jordan

Michael Jordan’s averages during the 1980’s: 32.6 PPG 6.2 RPG 5.9 APG 2.8 SPG and 1.2 BPG

Michael Jordan entered the league in 1984 so he only played 5 full seasons in the 1980’s. But he was a great offensive force and found some early career success. He was a NBA MVP, 5x NBA All-Star, NBA All-Star Game MVP, 4x All-NBA Team member, NBA Defensive Player of the Year, 2x NBA All-Defensive First Team member, 3x NBA scoring champion, and NBA steals leader.

4. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s averages during the 1980’s: 20.6 PPG 7.6 RPG 2.8 APG and 2.0 BPG

Kareem was not as dominate of a player statistically in the 1980’s as he was in the 1970’s but he found more success with championships. He was a 5x NBA champion, NBA Finals MVP, NBA MVP, 10x NBA All-Star, 6x All-NBA Team member, 3X NBA All-Defensive Team member, and a NBA blocks leader.

3. Moses Malone

Moses Malone’s averages during the 1980’s: 24.5 PPG 13.2 RPG 1.5 APG 1.4 BPG

Moses Malone was an NBA champion, NBA Finals MVP, 2x NBA MVP, 10x NBA All-Star, 7x All-NBA Team member, NBA All-Defensive First Team member, and 5x NBA rebounding leader.

2. Larry Bird

Larry Bird’s averages during the 1980’s: 25.0 PPG 10.2 RPG 6.1 APG and 1.8 SPG

Larry Bird and Magic Johnson’s rivalry defined the 1980’s. But Magic Johnson won 2 more NBA championships. Larry Bird was still a fantastic player with one of the best shooting abilities the NBA had seen. He was also a 3x NBA champion, 2x NBA Finals MVP, 3x NBA MVP, 9x NBA All-Star, NBA All-Star Game MVP, 9x All-NBA First Team member, and 3x NBA All-Defensive Second Team member.

1. Magic Johnson

Magic Johnson’s averages during the 1980’s: 19.5 PPG 11.2 APG 7.4 RPG and 2.0 SPG

Magic Johnson was the best teammate and all-around player of the decade. He was also a 5x NBA champion, 3x NBA Finals MVP, 9x NBA All-Star, 8x All-NBA Team member, 4x NBA assists leader, and 2x NBA steals leader.

Top 5 Players of the 1990’s

5. Scottie Pippen

Scottie Pippen’s averages during the 1990’s: 19.2 PPG 7.2 RPG 5.9 APG and 2.2 SPG

Scottie Pippen may have been Michael Jordan’s sidekick, but he was still an amazing player himself and he contributed a lot to their championships. Pippen was a 6x NBA Champion, 7x NBA All-Star, NBA All-Star Game MVP, 7x All-NBA Team member, 9x NBA All-Defensive Team member, and NBA steals leader.

4. Karl Malone

Karl Malone’s averages during the 1990’s: 27.2 PPG 10.7 RPG 3.7 APG and 1.4 SPG

Karl Malone was a consistently great scoring big-man but he could never beat the Chicago Bulls in the NBA Finals. He was a 2x NBA MVP, 9x NBA All-Star, NBA All-Star Game MVP, 10x All-NBA First Team member, and 3x NBA All-Defensive First Team member.

3. David Robinson

David Robinson’s averages during the 1990’s: 24.4 PPG 11.5 RPG 3.4 BPG 3.0 APG and 1.6 SPG

Karl Malone may have been a more consistent scorer but David Robinson had both great offense and defense. He was a NBA champion, NBA MVP, 8x NBA All-Star, 8x All-NBA Team member, NBA Defensive Player of the Year, 8x All-Defensive Team member, NBA scoring champion, NBA blocks leader, and NBA rebounding leader.

2. Hakeem Olajuwon

Hakeem Olajuwon’s averages during the 1990’s: 23.9 PPG 11.6 RPG 3.5 BPG 3.0 APG and 1.8 SPG

Hakeem Olajuwon is one of the greatest offensive and defensive players in NBA history. He also took advantage of Michael Jordan leaving the NBA and completely dominated for a couple seasons. He was a 2x NBA champion, 2x NBA Finals MVP, NBA MVP, 7x NBA All-Star, 9x All-NBA Team member, 6x NBA All-Defensive Team member, NBA rebounding leader, and 3x NBA blocks leader.

1. Michael Jordan

Michael Jordan’s averages during the 1990’s: 30.8 PPG 6.3 RPG 5.1 APG and 2.3 SPG

There was no question that Michael Jordan was the greatest player of the 1990’s. He simply dominated the league with his scoring ability and drive to win. He was a 6x NBA champion, 6x NBA Finals MVP, 4x NBA MVP, 7x NBA All-Star, 2x NBA All-Star Game MVP, 8x All-NBA Team member, 7x NBA All-Defensive First Team member, 7x NBA scoring champion, and 2x NBA steals leader.

Top 5 Players of the 2000’s

5. LeBron James

LeBron James’ averages during the 2000’s: 27.5 PPG 7.0 RPG 6.7 APG and 1.8 SPG

LeBron James only played 6 seasons in the 2000’s but he was amazing. He was an NBA MVP, 5x NBA All-Star, 2x NBA All-Star Game MVP, 5x All-NBA Team member, NBA All-Defensive First Team member, and NBA scoring champion.

4. Kevin Garnett

Kevin Garnett’s averages during the 2000’s: 21.6 PPG 12.1 RPG 4.7 APG 1.6 BPG and 1.3 SPG

Kevin Garnett was a good scoring big-man for the Minnesota Timberwolves and he took his consistent talent to the Boston Celtics to find success. Garnett ended the 2000’s with an NBA championship, NBA MVP, 10 NBA All-Star Game appearances, an NBA All-Star Game MVP, 8 All-NBA Team selections, an NBA Defensive Player of the Year award, 10 NBA All-Defensive Team selections, and 4 NBA rebounding championships.

3. Kobe Bryant

Kobe Bryant’s averages during the 2000’s: 28.2 PPG 5.9 RPG 5.2 APG and 1.7 SPG

Kobe Bryant has helped the Los Angeles Lakers more than any NBA player and he was practically unstoppable in his prime. He was a 4x NBA champion, NBA MVP, NBA Finals MVP, 10x NBA All-Star, 3x NBA All-Star Game MVP, 10x All-NBA Team member, 9x NBA All-Defensive Team member, and 2x NBA scoring champion.

2. Shaquille O’Neal

Shaquille O’Neal’s averages during the 2000’s: 23.1 PPG 10.6 RPG 2.7 APG and 2.2 BPG

Shaquille O’Neal was a 4x NBA champion, 3x NBA Finals MVP, NBA MVP, 9x NBA All-Star, 3x NBA All-Star Game MVP, 8x All-NBA Team member, 3x All-Defensive Second Team member, and an NBA scoring champion.

1. Tim Duncan

Tim Duncan’s averages during the 2000’s: 21.4 PPG 11.7 RPG 3.3 APG and 2.3 BPG

Tim Duncan was the most consistent player on the most consistent team. The Spurs had a level of success and sophistication that the NBA was being first introduced to and Tim Duncan was leading the team. Tim Duncan was a 4x NBA champion, 2x NBA Finals MVP, 2x NBA MVP, 10x NBA All-Star, NBA All-Star Game MVP, 10x All-NBA Team member, and 10x NBA All-Defensive Team member.

Top 5 Players of the 2010’s

The decade may not be over yet, but these are the best players of 2010’s

5. Dwyane Wade

Dwyane Wade’s averages during the 2010’s: 22.3 PPG 5.0 APG 4.8 RPG and 1.5 SPG

Dwyane Wade has benefited the Miami Heat more than anyone else in NBA history. In the 2010’s he won 2 NBA championships, and has been a 7x NBA All-Star, NBA All-Star Game MVP, 4x All-NBA Team member, and All-Defensive Second Team member.

 

4. Russell Westbrook

Russell Westbrook’s averages during the 2010’s: 22.5 PPG 8.0 APG 5.7 RPG and 1.8 SPG

Russell Westbrook has been the Oscar Robertson of this decade. He is a fantastic all-around player and his statistics are extremely impressive but he has had trouble winning an NBA championship in the earlier part of his career. Westbrook is a 5x NBA All-Star, 2x NBA All-Star Game MVP, 5x All-NBA Team member, and an NBA scoring champion.

3. Stephen Curry

Stephen Curry’s averages during the 2010’s: 22.4 PPG 6.9 APG 4.3 RPG and 1.8 SPG

In the earlier part of the 2010’s Stephen Curry was not an All-Star caliber player, but his play dramatically improved and he is now considered the best or second best player in the NBA. Stephen Curry is an NBA champion, 2x NBA MVP, 3x NBA All-Star, 3x All-NBA Team member, NBA scoring champion, and a NBA steals leader.

2. Kevin Durant

Kevin Durant’s averages during the 2010’s: 28.9 PPG 7.6 RPG 4.0 APG 1.2 SPG and 1.0 BPG

Kevin Durant has been one of the best players in the NBA for the past several years and has easily been the most versatile scorer. Since the start of 2010 Kevin Durant is a NBA MVP, 7x NBA All-Star, NBA All-Star Game MVP, 6x All-NBA Team member, and 4x NBA scoring champion.

1. LeBron James

LeBron James’ averages during the 2010’s: 26.9 PPG 7.3 RPG 7.1 APG and 1.6 SPG

LeBron James has been the greatest player in the NBA for several season and he has simply dominated the league. Since 2010 LeBron James is a 3x NBA champion, 3x NBA Finals MVP, 3x NBA MVP, 7x NBA All-Star, 7x All-NBA First Team member, 5x NBA All-Defensive Team member, and a NBA scoring champion.

About Emanuel Godina

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