NBA: All-time starting 5 of the 2000's
By the turn of the millennium, basketball had already reached an astronomical level of popularity all over the world. We saw the rise of young players who were drafted out of high school and we also saw the decline of the future Hall of Famers from the previous decade.
Also read: Top 10 Regular Season scorers in NBA History
The Los Angeles Lakers were the most successful team of the decade. They started off by winning the first three championships of the new millennium and they topped it off by winning another title in 2009. The San Antonio Spurs won the three rings (2003,2005,2007) while the Detroit Pistons (2004), the Miami Heat (2006) and the Boston Celtics (2008) were the other teams to capture a title during the decade.
The 2000s also produced a new breed of players that played the game in a way that had never been seen before. Players such as LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Chris Paul, Russell Westbrook and Stephen Curry all made their debuts during this decade and changed the way the game was played.
The 2000s were extremely hard to pick just one player from each position as standouts since there were so many players who could have been picked as the best. So, let's take a look at our picks for the best starting five of the decade.
Point Guard - Steve Nash (Dallas Mavericks/Phoenix Suns)
The point guard spot was tough to choose from on this list. Unlike today's game, the 2000s had so many great guards who were floor generals instead of having a score-first mentality and with the likes of Jason Kidd, Chris Paul, Tony Parker and Chauncey Billups it was really tough to pick a definitive best but due to accolades, Nash has to be our pick.
His first few seasons in the decade weren't anything special but once he was a regular starter for the Mavericks, there were signs of greatness and Nash earnt his first two All-Star appearances. Once he was traded back to Phoenix, he changed the way the game was played.
In Phoenix, he was named an All-Star four more times from 2005-2008. He was the league leader in assists from 2005-2007 and was also named to the All-NBA first team in those years. He also joined the 50-40-90 club in 2006 and did it again in 2008 and 2009 as well. The biggest accolades for Nash came in 2005 and 2006 when he was named the league's MVP on both occasions.
Though he had incredible personal success, Nash was never able to reach the NBA Finals. The closest he got was the conference final in his two MVP seasons (2005,2006) with the latter run being ended by his former team in Dallas.