ESPN declares Reggie Miller better than Bird; Cousy unworthy of Hall of Fame

If you had to pick 2 of these guys for your NBA team who would they be? 

In ESPN The Magazine's Dec. 24 Hall of Fame Issue, the worldwide leader in Sports has an article titled, "Mr. Stern, tear down this Hall." They give credit to longtime ESPN employee and recently appointed new member of the Memphis Grizzlies staff John Hollinger for upping the stats game in professional basketball back in 1996. Based on their new view of stats, ESPN re-ranked all the Hall of Famers and booted some players who they said were non-deserving. Guys like Nate "Tiny" Archibald, Sam Jones, Tom Heinsohn, and Bob Cousy. According to this ESPN piece they don't belong in the same class with legit Hall of Famers like Otis Thorpe, Elton Brand, Grant Hill, and Rasheed Wallace.

Additionally ESPN ranked all NBA players and here's where Celtics ranked all time: Kevin Garnett (10th),  Bill Russell (16th),  Larry Bird (23rd), Robert Parish (30th), Ray Allen (33rd), Paul Pierce (34th), John Havlicek (35th), Kevin McHale (51st), Ed Macauley (54th). Obviously for KG and Ray a large part of that ranking comes all from their play for their previous teams. While 16th seems very low for Mr. Championships, Bill Russell, you'll also love to hear that Dan Issel and Reggie Miller placed higher than Larry Bird. I would love to see Larry's face when someone told him that there were 22 players better than him.

Now I'm a stats guy. I like how people are coming around to more accurate stats. Back when I was a kid, I used to hate when guys were ranked on whether they were great shooters based on shooting % when it didn't take into account that shooting 4-10 from behind the arc was better than 5-10 from in front of it. So yeah new advanced (more accurate) stats are good. Obviously ESPN's formula is messed up though. Any metric that has 22 players better than Larry Bird needs to be scrapped immediately. Any Hall of Fame that doesn't include "Tiny" Archibald, Sam Jones, Tom Heinsohn, and Bob Cousy isn't legit.

What are your thoughts?

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