Top 5 NBA Players Over the Last 10 Years
The last decade of NBA basketball has provided no shortage of star power. Each draft class seems to contain another freakishly talented player that will redefine the league.
To celebrate this golden age of talent in the NBA, we've created a list of our top five players of the last decade. We decided this based on a combination of stats and overall accolades.
Take a look below and see if our list matches yours!
How Many NBA Stars Were Actually In The Top 5 Player Discussion Over The Last 10 Years? https://t.co/1IT4qxQf2T— Wilson Sy (@WilsonSy93) October 19, 2022
- LEBRON JAMES
Full Name: LeBron Raymone James
Born: December 30, 1984
Height: 6 ft 8 in
Role: Small Forward
Deciding to put Lebron at the top of this list was easy. Nicknamed "King James", he entered the league with as much hype as any high schooler ever had. Still, he has somehow surpassed it throughout his career. James has multiple MVPs and NBA championships, making eight consecutive Finals appearances from 2011-2018.
His most impressive run came when he returned to Cleveland and helped bring the lowly Cavs an elusive championship. The team has never come close without Lebron, showing just how good he is.
Lebron is the only player on our list that is also in the conversation to be the greatest of all time. While Michael Jordan holds that title for many, James has been the better athlete and played at a higher level for longer.
- Kevin Durant
Full Name: Kevin Wayne Durant
Born: September 29, 1988
Height: 6 ft 9 in
Role: Small Forward
Kevin Durant is the only other player on this list that could make an argument to be about Lebron. While he lacks the titles and impressive record that King James does, Durant has established himself as one of the greatest scorers in history. He has achieved this thanks to a combination of speed, size, and shooting ability. It's a rare combination, making it near impossible for opponents to stop him.
Its longevity may be the most impressive part of Durant's career. He has suffered several major injuries to his lower body, which usually has an immediate impact on an NBA player. However, Durant has recovered to his top form after each.
KD did win a title when he was with Golden State, but has fallen short everywhere else he has gone. The former MVP was recently traded to a great Suns team, so perhaps he can add to that total this season.
- Stephen Curry
Full Name: Wardell Stephen Curry II
Born: March 14, 1988
Role: Point Guard
Steph Curry is a name that still haunts scouts around the NBA. After dominating at the college level at Davidson, Curry was selected seventh overall in the 2009 draft. While still a lottery pick, many teams avoided Curry due to his injury history and size. Those doubts would disappear in his rookie season as he averaged 17.5 points and 1.9 steals. Since then, he has become one of the leading scorers in NBA history thanks to having one of the best shooting strokes in history.
While his stats are impressive, his accolades are what make him one of the greatest of all time. Curry has led the Warriors to 4 NBA championships, won two MVPs, and make nine All-Star rosters. He has also had international success, winning two gold medals in the FIBA World Cup.
His ridiculous stats combine with his impressive resume to make him one of the top ten greatest players in history. With the Warriors still playing well, we'll see if Steph can continue to add to his ring count.
- James Harden
Full Name: James Edward Harden Jr
Born: August 26, 1989
Height: 6 ft 5 in
Role: Shooting Guard/Point Guard
James Harden may be the most controversial player on this list, but it's not because of his success on the court. The former MVP has made the All-NBA team six times thanks to his incredible ability to score from anywhere on the court. He has three NBA scoring titles to his name and even won an Olympic gold medal in 2012. Harden was drafted third overall by the Thunder in 2009, but would go on to play for the Rockets, Nets, and Sixers.
While scoring is what he is known best for, Harden is also an incredible passer. He led the league in assists in 2017, and is among the top five so far this season. Though his scoring has been down since joining the Sixers, that passing ability still makes him one of the most valuable players in the league.
Some may argue over his making our list because of the so-called "Harden Rule". While he was at his scoring peak, Harden drew shooting shots by creating contact with defenders. While technically legal, it drew criticism from fans and players alike. This led to the NBA implementing a rule to make the move illegal. While Harden is still a solid scorer, his numbers did dip as a result.
You Might Also Like to Read:
- Kawhi Leonard
Full Name: Kawhi Anthony Leonard
Born: June 29, 1991
Height: 6 ft 7 in
Role: Small Forward
Though injuries have limited Leonard's playing time over the last few seasons, he has finally worked his way back to becoming one of the NBA's most dangerous players. Leonard gained some fame when winning it all with the Spurs, but became a household name when he took a decent Raptors to a surprising NBA Championship just a few years ago. He was impossible to stop during that run, finding ways always to get a clean look at the basket. He can shoot from anywhere on the court and still has the speed and strength to get past anybody.
If you go solely by his stats, he may fall short of some of the others in consideration for this list. However, his accolades speak for themselves. Aside from being a two-time champion, Leonard is an NBA Finals MVP, five-time All-Star, three-time All-NBA first team, and twice won defensive player of the year.
With Leonard finally appearing to be healthy, expect to see him help the Clippers push for an NBA Finals appearance this season. When he is in top form, Kawhi has shown he just can't be stopped.