It's crazy to see how fast time flies around the NBA. The guys that led the league just 5, 6 years ago, may now be merely role players or not even be around anymore. That only puts into context how impressive it is to watch a guy dominate the league for decades.
In fact, Twitter user @TheHoopCentral recently posted a picture of the class of 2003, featuring LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony, Chris Bosh, Dwyane Wade, Udonis Haslem, Kirk Hinrich, Chris Kaman, and Josh Howard; pointing out how crazy it is that just three players from that class are still hooping in the NBA.
It's even odder to find out how different their current roles are. In the following paragraphs, we'll break it down:
Udonis Haslem - Bench Player
It's pretty safe to say that Udonis Haslem hasn't made an impact on the court for the past 3 or 4 seasons. However, the Miami Heat just can't afford to let him walk away, as he's been their outspoken leader and veteran in the locker room, especially now that they feature so many young players.
Haslem is definitely going to have his jersey hanging high in the American Airlines Arena and he's likely to have a spot in Erik Spoelstra's coaching staff once he finally decides to retire after playing a big role in the franchise's three championships.
Carmelo Anthony - Role Player
Carmelo Anthony was blackballed by the NBA for over a year until he finally had the chance to prove that he still got it. He redeemed himself with some outstanding performances in the bubble and the Portland Trail Blazers would be wise to keep him around.
It's clear that Anthony still has a lot left in the tank and that, even though he's no longer going to be that 25+ points per game scorer at this point in his career, he's still a better scorer than 60% of NBA players and is worthy of a starting spot.
LeBron James - Best Player In The World
And last, but not least, we find the man, the legend, the one and only. This picture is a living testament to just how good LeBron James is. I mean, he took the league by storm 17 years ago and continues to dominate at 35-years-old, leading the Los Angeles Lakers to an NBA Championship.
James continues to reinvent himself and find a way to make a huge impact on every single aspect of the game. He led the league in assists per game on his very first year as a full-time point guard and, judging by his current shape, it seems like he could still play at a high level for another 4-5 years.