Here's a look at Ian Thomsen's complete roster and the writer's analysis of his team, including his preferred starting lineup (which has center Alonzo Mourning at power forward), his pick in the coaches' draft and his assessment of how these players would come together on the court.
Three titles & MVPs; 24.3 ppg, 10 rpg, 6.3 apg, 49.6% FG
Only player to win MVP, Finals MVP, Sixth Man Award
'95 title; 10-time All-Star; 20.4 ppg, 6.1 rpg, 5.6 apg
Back-to-back MVPs ('04-06); five assist titles; 90.4.% FT
Back-to-back Defensive Player of Year; 17.1 ppg, 2.8 bpg
Three titles; Olympic gold medalist; '08 Sixth Man Award
Five-time All-NBA; 20.7 ppg, 9.8 rpg, 4.2 apg; '94 ROY
Micheal Ray Richardson
First player to lead league in assists and steals ('80)
Four-time Defensive Player of the Year; No. 2 in blocks
Three-time All-Defensive team; '06 leader in blocks/bpg
21+ ppg twice; 14 ppg for '79 SuperSonics title team
Unanimous Rookie of the Year; All-Star in first season
COACH: Red Auerbach, the second pick (out of 10) in the coaches' draft. As the inventor of the style I envision for this team, Auerbach will marry their talents seamlessly while transforming aggressive team defense into fluid, up-tempo offense.
STYLE OF PLAY: We're going to defend as a team with at least two shot-blockers on the floor at all times (from among Bill Walton, Alonzo Mourning, Chris Webber, Dikembe Mutombo and Andrei Kirilenko), enabling us to control tempo as the best passing team anyone has ever seen. With the necessary exception of Clyde Drexler, all of my scorers are elite passers who know how to play with and without the ball. The ball movement and scoring skills will make this team unstoppable.
BIGGEST CONCERNS: I'm not worried about anything except for the no-smoking rules that Auerbach is going to break at the end of every game.
MY GAME-ON-THE-LINE PLAY: My team is unguardable in these situations because Bird, Walton and Steve Nash rate among the best hybrid scorers/passers at their positions. I would love to see Walton in the high post with the ball overhead and promising to shoot as Bird, Nash and Drexler (or Manu Ginobili) threaten backdoor cuts around him while frightening and fraying the defense. How about this: Screened open by Mourning, Bird receives a pass on the move and then finds Mourning rolling to the basket with a blind, over-the-shoulder feed for an uncontested dunk. If we need a three-pointer, the options include Bird, Ginobili, Nash and Downtown Freddie Brown.
SCARIEST RIVAL: The only team that worries me is Chris Ballard's because he has Bill Russell. Otherwise, I'm reminded of something Bird announced in the locker room before a three-point contest: "Who's comin' in second?''
WHY MY TEAM IS THE BEST: Bird, Walton and Nash are (arguably) the most artful players of all time at their positions, no one is more resilient than Mourning, and Drexler is among the most athletic slashers of any era. I wanted to assemble a Dream Team version of the 1976-77 champion Trail Blazers, and this roster fulfills that ideal: The ball is going to move quickly and unpredictably, the play is going to be beautiful and my team is going to be impossible to stop.
Seth Davis' Bracket Breakdown: South Region
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