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“I got Russell, I got Kareem, I’d just pick 1 of them and I got better than anybody you got today”

The idea that NBA players in the 1960s and ’70s couldn’t play in today’s game has divided fans. While some consider this to be true, others call it complete nonsense.

Many of the younger generation simply cannot fathom why the guys in short shorts would have a place in the league today. Renowned author Bob Ryan, who has been watching the NBA since the 1960s, argues that the stars back then would be as good in the 2020s.

On “The Ryen Russillo Podcast,” Ryan backed the trailblazers of the game, calling them good, if not better than today’s superstars:

“I can give you a list of a 12-man team of NBA players, each of whom spent five years of their career in the ’60s, a 12-man team I’d put up against anybody you wanna play today.

“First of all, I got the centers, you don’t have them! I got Wilt. I got Russell. I got Kareem. I’d just pick one of them, and I got better than anybody you got today in the pivot. End of story. …I got Oscar. I got Jerry (West). I got (John) Havlicek. I got (Rick) Barry. I got Sam Jones. I got (Dave) DeBusschere. I got Pettit. Oh, thank you very much!”

The majority of PFs on the NBA 75th anniversary team 👇Charles BarkleyKarl MaloneKevin GarnettDirk NowitzkiTim DuncanKevin McHaleElvin HayesDennis RodmanAnthony DavisKevin Love is better than 99% of the PFs on the list?@jj_redick I hope selling out was worth it https://t.co/dNSZq09bWI

Four of the players Ryan included in the list are multiple MVP winners. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar won it six times, Bill Russell had five, Wilt Chamberlain had four and Bob Pettit had two. Oscar Robertson was also named MVP eleven. Every name on that roster was an All-Star on numerous occasions.