The 75 greatest NBA players of the 2000s, ranked

The 2000s were an important decade for the NBA, with new stars emerging to carry the league into a new era. But which players were the best of the decade?
Tim Duncan, Shaquille O'Neal
Tim Duncan, Shaquille O'Neal / Jed Jacobsohn/GettyImages
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20) Gilbert Arenas

Few players can say that they had a peak like former Washington Wizards star Gilbert Arenas. Between the 2001–02 and 2008–09 seasons, "Agent Zero" averaged a terrific 22.8 points, 5.5 assists, and 4.2 rebounds in 433 games for the Golden State Warriors and then the Washington Wizards.

Over those nine seasons, he evolved into one of the premier offensive players in the NBA, with an incredible three-year peak from 2004–05 to 2006–07, when he averaged 27.7 points, 5.7 assists, and 1.9 steals. Of course, after that, he would flame out in spectacular fashion.

He played just 47 games over the next three seasons after tearing his ACL and he was later suspended for bringing guns into the locker room. His career never recovered, and he was traded to the Orlando Magic and last played for the Memphis Grizzlies.

Although his career quickly went sideways, he was still among the best players of the 2000s. In fact, he managed to make three all-star teams, three all-NBA teams, and even a Most Improved Player of the Year award during the decade.