The last 10 years have been spectacular for the NBA. The league is chock full of stars both American and International. This decade has also seen the evolution of the super team. Never has it been harder for a team to win an NBA title.
It hasn’t just been the super teams that have had success, though, as the Toronto Raptors took down the star-laden Golden State Warriors in 2019. Many players have had high levels of success over the last 10 years, but none more than these unreal athletes.
Honorable Mention – Kyrie Irving
Whenever he is fully healthy, Kyrie Irving is one of the top 10 or 12 players in the league. But the players ahead of him on this list have been healthier and done it for a longer period of time.
The 1st pick in the 2011 Draft, Irving has bounced from the Cleveland Cavaliers to the Boston Celtics and the Brooklyn Nets, making 6 All-Star Teams. He has career averages of 22.4 points, 5.7 assists and 2.1 threes per game.
Honorable Mention – Kyle Lowry
Kyle Lowry has been established as a star for 5 or 6 years now. It did, however, take him half his career to get to that point. All it took was a trade to the Toronto Raptors.
Once the point guard was dealt to Toronto, he took his game to the next level. Lowry has made the last five All-Star games and helped the Raptors win the 2019 NBA Title. He has career averages of 14.5 points, 6.1 assists and 4.3 rebounds per game.
Honorable Mention – Marc Gasol
Prior to the beginning of the decade. Marc Gasol was traded from the Lakers to the Grizzlies in a package for his brother Pau. It turned out to be a great deal for both teams as Pau helped LA to a title and Marc became a star.
The talented seven-footer made three All-Star teams while playing for Memphis. In 2019, he won an NBA Title after being dealt to Toronto. He has career averages of 14.7 points, 7.7 rebounds and 1.4 blocks per game.
Honorable Mention – Kevin Love
Now that LeBron James and Kyrie Irving have left Cleveland without him, Kevin Love seems to be kind of a forgotten man. The mix of injuries and losing has made it so that NBA fans don’t remember just how good he’s been.
Drafted by the Timberwolves in 2009, Love was an absolute force as both a rebounder and a scorer. A trade to the Cavaliers helped the five-time All-Star get a ring. For his career, he’s notched 18.2 points, 11.2 rebounds and 2.9 assists per game.
Honorable Mention – Karl Anthony Towns
Sometimes when you create an all-decade team, the only thing holding a player back might be their lack of time spent in that decade. And that is certainly true of Karl Anthony Towns, who has been a star since the day he entered the league.
The number one overall selection by the Minnesota Timberwolves in 2015. Towns won the 2016 Rookie of the Year award and has made two All-Star teams. For the decade, he averaged 22.5 points, 11.8 rebounds, and 1.4 blocks.
Third Team – Dwayne Wade
The start of the decade was spectacular for Dwyane Wade as he was joined in Miami by Chris Bosh and LeBron James. The marriage would be a successful one and Wade added two rings to the one he already had.
As the decade ended Wade spent the last few seasons diminished from his superstardom and retired in 2019. He still had quite an impressive decade, making the All-Star game eight times and was featured on numerous All-NBA teams.
Third Team – Kobe Bryant
By the time the year 2010 had rolled around, Kobe Bryant was already a 14-year veteran. That’s not to say he didn’t have anything left in the tank. The Lakers won the title in 2010 and Kobe was Finals MVP.
He, of course, made the All-Star game every year until he retired in 2015. He was also First Team All-NBA each year until 2013. For his career, the Lakers legend averaged 25 points, 5.2 rebounds, and 4.7 assists.
Third Team – Paul George
For much of the decade, Paul George was clearly a great player. The problem was, that his team wasn’t winning many games. That changed near the end of the decade when he was dealt to the Thunder, then the Clippers.
The small forward has made five All-Star games and was named to his first All-NBA First Team in 2019. He is also known for his stalwart defense, making the All-Defensive team twice. For his decade, George put up 20 points, 6.4 rebounds, and 3.3 assists.
Third Team – LaMarcus Aldridge
There is always a place on any best-of list for someone who has been quietly excellent. And since he came into the league in 2006, big man LaMarcus Aldridge has been a perfect example of quietly excellent.
The sweet-shooting center who initially came into the league with the Portland Trailblazers moved to the San Antonio Spurs in 2015. Aldridge made seven All-Star games during the last decade and has career averages of 19.6 points, 8.4 rebounds, and 1.1 blocks.
Third Team – Giannis Antetokounmpo
When the Milwaukee Bucks selected Giannis Antetokounmpo out of Greece, he was a lanky 18-year-old loaded with potential. Little did anyone realize what it would look like if he reached 100% of his potential.
His first breakout came in his 4th year when he averaged 22.9 points, 8.7 rebounds, and 5.4 assists. In 2019, he was named the NBA MVP after scoring 27.7 points a game with 12.5 boards and 5.9 dimes. He has made the All-Star team each of the last three seasons.
Second Team – Chris Paul
Chris Paul has not only played every season in this decade, but he’s also played like a star each year. The fact that he’s one the second team speaks to the strength of this generation of NBA stars.
Paul is a nine-time NBA All-Star who made the team every year from 2010-2016. He is also a defensive stalwart who made the league’s All-Defense team six times in the decade. He has career averages of 18.5 points and 9.7 assists.
Second Team – Russell Westbrook
Russell Westbrook has played with a number of superstars during the decade including Kevin Durant, James Harden, and Paul George. But the hair on fire point guard has also carved out quite a career of his own.
Not only did Westbrook become the first player since 1962 to average a triple-double, he’s actually done it three times. The 2017 MVP and eight-time NBA All-Star has career averages of 23 points, 7 rebounds, and 8.4 assists.
Second Team – Anthony Davis
There are some players in college who are so dominant it’s nearly guaranteed that they will be NBA stars. When Anthony Davis played at Kentucky, it was clear that he was going to dominate in the league and so far, he has.
And when he’s been healthy, he has unstoppable. Staying upright has been a problem for Davis who now plays alongside LeBron James for the LA Lakers. In the previous decade, the lanky Center averaged 24 points, 10.5 rebounds, and 2.4 blocks.
Second Team – Blake Griffin
Blake Griffin was one of the more sought after college players in years. The Clippers, who selected him first overall, had to wait a year for him after he broke his kneecap prior to his rookie season. He was well worth the wait.
Along with Chris Paul and DeAndre Jordan, Griffin starred on the Lob City Clippers who were one of the top teams throughout the decade. The power forward, who was later traded to the Detroit Pistons, has averaged 21.7 points, 9.5 rebounds, and 4.4 assists.
Second Team – Carmelo Anthony
Carmelo Anthony, at his best, could score against any defender and in any situation. The reason he is a second-teamer on this list rather than a first-teamer, is due to not defending strongly and not winning quite enough.
Anthony spent much of the decade in New York as a member of the Knicks. He made eight All-Star teams during the decade and was the league’s scoring champion in 2013. Over his career, he’s averaged 23.9 points, 6.5 rebounds, and 2.9 assists.
First Team – Stephen Curry
NBA decision makers knew Stephen Curry was good when he was drafted in the 2009 draft lottery. How good he would become was another question as many wondered how his skinny frame would hold up to the rigors of the league. The answer ended up being just fine.
Curry has been one of the very best players in the league over the decade, capturing two MVP Awards and three championship rings. For his career, he’s averaged 23.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 6.4 assists.
First Team – James Harden
James Harden began his career with the Oklahoma City Thunder, playing alongside other stars like Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook. Once the combo guard was dealt to the Houston Rockets, though, he was able to fully realize his potential.
Harden is a sublime scorer who is able to get to the basket seemingly at will. The “Beard” has notched two scoring titles and was the league’s MVP in 2018. He holds career averages of 24.9 points, 5.2 boards, and 6.2 assists.
First Team – LeBron James
No one comes into each NBA season with bigger expectations than LeBron James. And amazingly enough, he nearly exceeds those high expectations every year. James played a lot of basketball in the last decade, appearing in the NBA finals six times and winning three of those.
He also moved around a bit in the decade, going from Cleveland to Miami, back to Cleveland and then to Los Angeles, winning three MVP Awards along the way. The first-ballot Hall of Famer averaged 27.1 points, 7.4 rebounds, and 7.3 assists.
First Team – Kevin Durant
Kevin Durant spent much of the decade chasing a championship ring along with Russell Westbrook in Oklahoma City. That chase was unsuccessful, but the lanky forward had better title luck once he took his talents to Golden State.
The now Brooklyn Net won two titles as a member of the Warriors. There was also plenty of individual success as Durant was named to six First Team All-NBA squads. Over the course of his career, he’s averaged 27 points, 7.1 rebounds, and 4.1 assists.
First Team – Kawhi Leonard
Most players of Kawhi Leonard’s ability are drafted into terrible situations. Kawhi Leonard, though, inexplicably fell to the 15th selection of the 2011 draft and was traded to the Spurs. He won his first NBA title in San Antonio in 2014.
Leonard won another title with Toronto in 2019, then moved to the Clippers. During the decade, he made three All-Star games and two All-NBA First Teams. He’s averaged 18 points, 6.4 rebounds, and 2.4 assists per game.