All-Time NBA Franchise Tournament Rules

Here are the All-Time NBA Franchise Tournament Rules:

1. There are 12 players on each all-time franchise team.

2. Players must have played at least four years and 200 games for a franchise to be eligible for inclusion.

3. This tournament considers only the contribution that each player made for the particular franchise in question. For example, Wilt Chamberlain played five seasons with the Los Angeles Lakers, and only those years are considered for his involvement with the all-time Lakers franchise team. His four years with the 76ers are the only years considered for his involvement with the all-time 76ers franchise team, and the same for his six seasons with the Warriors.

4. I’m not too dogmatic about positions. Starting lineups have an appropriate mix of big men, wings, and ball-handlers.

5. During the tournament, each franchise competes in a hypothetical best-of-seven series against their opponent. I first construct a detailed description of each team; then, after each team is constructed, the matchups begin, where I use research, analysis, and informed opinion to choose a winner.

6. All statistics are courtesy of the great The cumulative statistics for each player are listed. I avoid listing per-game statistics when any years are missing (steals per game and blocks per game were not officially tracked until the 1973-74 season, for example).

7. Franchises are seeded by the total number of championships won (first tiebreaker – NBA, BAA, and ABA all count), and by franchise longetivity (second tiebreaker). An online randomizer was used as a third tiebreaker.

8. Here is a guide to the acronyms used in each team’s chart (each is for the player’s time with the franchise under consideration):
PPG – Points per game
RPG – Rebounds per game
APG – Assists per game
SPG – Steals per game
BPG – Blocks per game
FG% – Field goal percentage
3FG% – Three point field goal percentage
FT% – Free throw percentage
PER – Player Efficiency Rating
WS/48 – Win Shares per 48 minutes
All-Star Games – Number of all-star games made
All-NBA – Number of all-NBA teams made (1st, 2nd, or 3rd team)
All-NBA Defense – Number of all-NBA defensive teams made (1st or 2nd team)
ROY – Rookie of the Year
MVP – Most Valuable Player
DPOY – Defensive Player of the Year
ASG MVP – All-Star Game Most Valuable Player
SMOY – Sixth Man of the Year
MIP – Most Improved Player
Finals MVP – NBA Finals Most Valuable Player

5 thoughts on “All-Time NBA Franchise Tournament Rules”

  1. Quick question… why aren’t you using an established sports text sim (more realistic results than, say, NBA2K16) such as the highly recommended Action PC Basketball ( to simulate/play/game this tournament? After all the prepatory work you’ve put in (I should know – I’ve followed through with a similar concept using the aforementioned Action PC basketball), wouldn’t it make for a far more entertaining and informative payoff all around (think of the stats and game descriptions you could post!) rather than at best guessing at the results and choosing the winners and losers? ESPN and others often utilize simulators for a variety of sports scenarios ( in particular used the Action PC Basketball game for a recent “What If” piece on Kobe, that had the Mamba drafted by the Nets).

    1. Very interesting idea, and I appreciate your post. I actually enjoy breaking down the matchups and seeing where each team has an advantage. While simulators are fun (and can be very accurate), I believe the matchup breakdowns on this site are far more fulfilling (for me as an author) and compelling (to the readers). I do like the idea of using a simulator at the end of the tournament to see where the results may differ.

      1. Hey, thanks for the response Chris!

        I’m not saying drop one for the other… No sir! But why not have your cake and eat it too? You can engage in and post all the team building, match-up analysis and predictions your heart desires. You clearly enjoy doing it, and there’s absolutely no reason to put any part of that aside.

        By taking it one (logical?) step further, in using a reputable sports text sim to simulate the games after you run through your extensive prologues, you could generate tangible results not otherwise solely determined by informed opinion, post detailed box scores and provide running commentary, and summarize outcomes with a post-game/series/tournament wrap backed by the stats. The only thing that would really change with your approach is how you present the “Results” portion of your write-ups.

        None of this would seem to detract from your fulfillment as an author (again, we’re talking by and large “in addition to,” rather than “in place of”), and I’d be willing to bet your audience would find this project even more compelling if they could sift through game results/stats AND read your after-action reports backed by the numbers.

        Regardless, you should check out Action PC Basketball at the aforementioned link (there’s an online forum as well – And if you’d like to see a spreadsheet breakdown of All-Time NBA franchises (includes a handful of ABA players) that I use in my sims, I’ll be happy to forward a copy.

  2. I’d love to check out the work that you’ve already done with your simulations. This is a great suggestion, and I’ll be sure to check out Action PC Basketball to see how if the results match up. Thanks!

    1. Great… let me know where to send the spreadsheet (feel free to e-mail me using the address I previously provided)! My criteria for inclusion were somewhat different than your own; I’ll go into detail in an e-mail accompanying the document.

      Also, to be absolutely clear, the Action products must be purchased (never fear- there’s a 30 day money back guarantee, so there’s no risk if you ain’t feelin’ it). Additionally, if you want to run the type of simulation we’re talking about here, you’re going to have to put in considerable effort to assemble the teams, either using the Action rated players of interest (e.g. if you opt to use the players’ single best season), or creating/rating some amalgamation of the players yourself (which the game allows you to do – say, using your four year stretch of choice as a base – though this would be a particularly difficult and time consuming way to go about it, essentially as a newbie to the game).

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