Each team’s best NBA Jam duo of all time

Vince Carter, Toronto Raptors. (Photo by Sam Forencich/NBAE via Getty Images)
Vince Carter, Toronto Raptors. (Photo by Sam Forencich/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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Larry Bird, Boston Celtics
Larry Bird, Boston Celtics. (Photo by Dick Raphael/NBAE via Getty Images) /

Best NBA Jam duo for Boston Celtics: Larry Bird + Bill Russell

When you are a tiny pixelated basketball player, it would be easy to think poorly of yourself. So picking a player bursting with confidence seems like a savvy move. No player combined ultimate self-confidence with the ability to back it up in every competition imaginable as well as Boston Celtics legend Larry Bird.

The Hall of Fame forward and top-10 all-time player could score from anywhere, including the 3-point line. He famously walked into a locker room of 3-point shootout opponents and told them they were playing for second place. Imagine dropping that line on the guy standing next to you before you rained down shots in NBA Jam?

Pairing Bird with a high-flying dunker is one possibility, perhaps taking Antoine Walker. Bob Cousy, John Havlicek, Paul Pierce — this team has had plenty of strong scorers. Yet what would be truly nasty would be a defensive juggernaut such as Bill Russell.

If he got back on defense before the opponent, Russell would deter every shot. His defensive stat bar would be overflowing: on a scale of 1-to-100, he would score 10,000.

Bird wouldn’t mind handling all the offensive workload and would be up to the challenge. Russell would be there to clean the glass and score on putbacks. The pairing would be deadly in actual NBA basketball and on the NBA Jam court.