In light of Stevie Franchise proclaiming himself the greatest DMV baller ever I decided to construct an all-time DMV team. If I forget any Virginians please feel free to point that out in the comments below. Also feel free to lambaste my choices.
This kind of thing is litterally filed under “Frivolities” on Basketballreference.com. Frivolities!? (shakes fist). DMV pride is much more than that!
The bottom line is the DMV is and has always been a premiere spot for basketball talent. Routinely DMVers fill roster spots of four major basketball powers: UMD, Georgetown, Duke and UNC.
Quick rules check
For you “Lovers” out there, if the dude is from south of Fredericksburg he’s out. I don’t care that The Post covers Va Tech.
For the “Old Line”rs, if he’s from the Eastern Shore, or west of Frederick, he’s out. West Va. is also out.
College prowess counts (Wink, Wink) but just going to school in the DMV does not.
Why did the Pistons take all our players? If you know please comment.
Point Guard: Sam Cassell
This was the hardest call on the list but I picked Paul Laurence Dunbar’s Poet over Montgomery Blair’s Blazer.
Cassell and Steve Francis’ numbers near mirror one another. Cassell gets the edge is field goal percentage shooting .454 to Francis’ .429 but Francis had some bigger scoring and Win Share years. In the end I went with the fact that Cassel was a significant player on good teams for much longer than Francis.
Back-to-back titles with Rockets and some strong runs with Garnett on the Wolves puts Cassell over Francis. What’s up B-more!
Shooting Guard: Len Bias
I know he never played in the NBA and that story of his death borders on cliche but the only guy he compared to was Jordan.
Some people who watched both play said Bias already had a better jump shot than Jordan when Bias was still in college and Jordan was in the League.
The Northwest Wildcat could do it all. At 6’8″ he could play the position today and with his athleticism he’d be extremely tough to guard. He is straight DMV all the way (Born and raised in Prince George’s) and would have continued the Celtics winning tradition well into the 90s.
Jordan may end up looking better in this video but you have to remember he’s two years older than Bias. It’s worth every second of the 10 minutes.
Small Forward: Elgin Baylor
The Springarn product was the best player in the Western Conference for most of his career. Baylor averaged27 points per game (before the 3pt line) and 13 rebounds a game. At 6’5″ he’d be undersized at his position today but because he was so dominant and because he was the first truely great play from the DMV he has to get the nod.
Baylor, unfortunately spent most of his career as Bill Russel’s straw man, losing to the Celtics in the finals seven times. He also played on two of the chokiest teams in history: the ’69 Lakers were beat by the gimpy, old Celtics and the ’70 version of the Lake-show were upset by the gimpy Knicks.
Power Forward: David Robinson
I know I’m playing him out of position but: a) I wanted Va. to have a significant presence on the team and b) I refuse to put Michael Beasley on the list.
“The Admiral” spent his high school days at Osbourn Park High School in Manassas. Their motto is “Once a Jacket Always a Jacket.”
Robinson crossed the Potomac and famously made Navy a relevant basketball team for about 15 seconds. Just goes to show you that when you have a dominant center you have chance to make some noise (I’m looking at you Orlando).
Once in the NBA Robinson compiled 178 Wins Shares (putting him 11th all-time). He was also a member of the original Dream Team and on the monster team in Space Jam.
Center: Ralph Sampson
I know Harrisonburg is pushing it but, hey, we need a center and like I said BEASLEY IS NOT GETTING ON THE LIST, so stop asking.
Sampson was absolutely dominant in college and in the NBA until, like most people that are freakishly large, he suffered injury problems (see Bill Walton, Greg Oden).
In his first three seasons he averaged 20 and 10. In his first two seasons he blocked over 2 shots a game. That number dropped in his third year to 1.6, I guess because people got tired of getting stuffed like a cannoli.
You can see the same trend in his college numbers where he blocked a career-high 4.6 shots a game as a freshmen at UVA.
Three knee surgery’s is what did it to him. He had two productive half seasons after he burst onto the pro scene but simply wasn’t much of a factor afterward. The hardwood can be a nasty playing surface.
Six Man: Kevin Durant
Yup I went with Durant over Melo. I honestly think he’s a better player. He’s a much tougher defender. Melo has never posted the five Defensive Win Shares Durant collected last year.
Durant was born in the District and played ball at Montrose Christian. Last year he absolutely blew up dropping 30 a game and 16.1 Win Shares.
Durant quietly signed an extension with OK this offseason while LeBron was annoying everyone with “The Decision.” I wish he’d come to the Zards but you can’t blame the guy for being classy and sticking with the franchise that brought him to The League.
Honorable Mention: Dave Bing, Steve Francis, Adrian Dantley, Grant Hill, Carmello Anthony and Rudy Gay.
So there you have it Francis, I love you but you can’t even make the FIRST TEAM.