9 Best NBA Role Players Since 2000

… In no particular order… I’m only talking about guys that were REAL role players…Like the guys that could probably walk around in their uniform in nearly any city and not get bothered… Not former all-stars disguised as role players (So scratch out the David Lees, Iguodalas, etc. you’re all too well-known and talented)…

  1. Boris Diaw– Diaw is a walking near triple-double. Improved shooting over the years, surprisingly not-bad on ball defender, plugged into the right system in stops such as San Antonio and Phoenix…Diaw has eyes in the back of his head and one of the most annoying layup packages in the game, but if you doubt his spot on this list then watch this.
  2. Shane Battier– I despise Battier as a basketball player…But you don’t win without guys like him on your team. If you have watched him play you already know…Stingy and overly intelligent defense, the ultimate sneaky cheap shot player, timely three pointers…I can’t watch him on TV without getting at least a little angry but at the end of the day you have to respect the guy, he is a certified winner.
  3. Derek Fisher– A critical part of several Lakers championships, widely respected throughout the league- had teams all but begging him to retire so they could hire him as a head coach…Enough said.
  4. James Posey– Not sure if anybody outside of New England remembers this, but Posey was a HUGE part of the 2008 championship, lockdown defense, helped stretch the floor as a 3 or 4 man. Posey also helped Miami to a championship with D-Wade & Shaq in 2006.
  5. Nick Collison– Collison has been with the OKC franchise for more than a decade now (I think?). You know what you are getting from this guy every time he takes the floor…

Toughness

Dependable Mid-Range Shooting and Finishing Around the Rim

…Mixed in with the occasional “Nick Collison can jump….?” finish around the rim.

  1. Andre Miller– (I know I said no former all-star level players, but Miller is somebody that the casual fan would still not recognize if he had a conversation with them). I’m not talking about the Andre Miller that was averaging ten assists with the Cavs when I was in Little League. I mean the guy you saw the past five years or so and were shocked he was still in the league…And even more shocked to see him toying with guys ten years younger than him. Andre Miller is a bad man. You just know he will DOMINATE any pickup game he plays in for as long as he lives.

Disclaimer: DO NOT try to do anything important with Miller in NBA 2k…Frustration with his speed and shooting ratings will result in controllers being damaged beyond repair.

  1. Udonis Haslem– No coincidence that Haslem has stuck around in Miami for so long…He plays hard as hell, catch & shoot jumper from the elbows and baseline has been an automatic two points for more than a decade. You don’t stay on one NBA roster for this long, especially in this day and age, as a role player unless you are damn good at what you do.
  2. Tony Allen– Allen is arguably the best perimeter defender in the league. As a lot of websites have written, he is an awful shooter and poor decision maker with the ball, but he plays with so much grit that he was able to help Boston to that championship in 2008 and earn himself a nice payday with Memphis and has been a very important part of a consistent 50 win team. http://grantland.com/the-triangle/the-grindfathers-house-welcome-to-tony-allens-playoffs/
  3. SCAL– Scal is a legend and gets action in every city he goes to…But if you thought a ball player from New England wouldn’t include The White Mamba on his list you’re out of your mind…….

Fun fact of the night: Brian Scalabrine was a three-time all PAC-10 selection so stop telling yourself you can beat him 1 on 1…You sound crazy.

 

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