In the very near future, the NBA will be commemorating its 75th season by releasing a list of the 75 greatest players. HoopsHype elected to release their own “HoopHype’s 75 Greatest NBA Player List,” and, controversy and chatter aside, made note of numerous Portland Trail Blazers players, both past and present.
The Blazers were represented by one current player, Damian Lillard, who earned a borderline top-50 spot, right at No. 52. Here’s how they assessed the Blazers’ star guard:
Top accolades: Six All-NBA selections, six All-Stars
NBA rank: 88th in assists, 101st in scoring
Share of the vote: 27.1 percent of the maximum amount possible
Of course, like with any active player on this list, Damian Lillard could see himself outperform his ranking depending on how the rest of his prime goes. Even as is, however, Lillard is one of the best score-first point guards ever, with outstanding shooting ability and clutch shots galore on his resume already.
This No. 52 spot is particularly noteworthy in that prior to this, there had been discussions centered around Lillard being on the bubble. Lillard makes this list with comfort. That’s a reassuring thought, especially when one considers how much of Lillard’s career has centered around his being snubbed, and sometimes being overlooked in a small market.
Lillard is joined by numerous former Blazers greats, most notably Clyde Drexler, who earned the No. 43 selection. Here’s how Drexler’s share of the vote shook out:
Top accolades: One NBA title, five All-NBA selections, 10 All-Stars
NBA rank: 8th in steals, 32nd in scoring, 34th in assists, 130th in rebounds, 172nd in blocks
Share of the vote: 44.0 percent of the maximum amount possible
One of the best 2-guards ever, Clyde Drexler was a fantastic scorer, rebounder and playmaker for his position, while also using his athleticism well defensively.
Through Lillard and Drexler, HoopsHype covered arguably the two most accomplished players outside of Bill Walton. And speaking of Walton, he was listed as the first honorable mention on the list, falling just short of their version of the Top 75.
But, the Blazers were represented well by players who spent short tenures there, such as Lenny Wilkens (No. 75, 6.2 percent of the maximum vote), Carmelo Anthony (the No. 49 rank, 32.4 percent of the vote), and Scottie Pippen (No. 27, 62.7 percent of the vote).
The rest of the list can be found above.