Want to learn about 5 street ballers in NBA history? Basketball purists don't believe that street ballers belong in the NBA, but these five street ballers in the NBA not only survived, they excelled. Street ballers have been around since the birth of basketball. These are the guys that take the fundamentals of the game, add their own flare and creativity (born out of the street game) and totally shake up the traditional game of basketball. Many will argue that common street players just aren't good enough for the NBA game. Though this is true for most, some of the best players in NBA history started out in the streets and brought their brand of basketball artistry to the NBA. These five street ballers are killers in a league known for historically praising conformists and ousting so-called "troublemakers."
- Rafer "Skip 2 My Lou" Alston. He's probably the most famous street baller in history because he's linked to an ever-growing street ball culture. The "And1" series made street ball a household name. Alston has since been the poster boy for street ball. He was a killer in the street ball leagues and transported his skills to the NBA ranks. He's been a fixture in the NBA, putting up solid point guard numbers. He's averaging 10.1 points, and 4.8 assists a game over an NBA career that started in 1999.
- Stephon "Starbury" Marbury. Marbury was a famous Brooklyn street baller. Like most street ballers, he had an impressive high school career. Unlike most, he went on to excel in college and eventually he brought his brand of street ball to the NBA. A prolific scoring guard, this guy could put up a lot of points. Marbury, however, couldn't acclimate himself to the team game. His personal numbers always looked good, but teams with him at the helm never performed to their potential. That's not to take anything away from his personal talents however. During his NBA career he averaged 19.3 points, 7.6 assists, and 1.2 steals a game.
- Connie "The Hawk" Hawkins. This 6'8" powerhouse was one of the best street ballers ever. Listed as a center, he could handle the ball remarkably well and was a hell of a passer. He's a legend on the most famous court in street baller history, the Rucker. He was also a dominating force in the more organized game as well. Starting out in rival leagues to the NBA, this street baller made a name for himself as a prolific scorer and rebounder. Finally, in 1969, he transitioned into the NBA, playing for the Phoenix Suns. His NBA career lasted seven seasons due to injuries but he still managed to average 16.5 points, 8 rebounds, and 4.2 assists a game in 499 games as an NBA pro.
- Earl "The Pearl" Monroe. "Black Jesus," as he was known on the Philadelphia playgrounds, was not only a great street baller, but one of the greatest NBA players of all time. A beast of a scorer, Monroe was known more for his passing, dribbling and play-making ability on the streets of Philly. He took his street baller ability and flourished in the NBA. Later in his career he made up half of arguably the best two guard one-two punch in basketball history. While playing for the New York Knicks, Clyde Frazier and Earl Monroe would devastate the opposing team with flashy passes and tons and tons of scoring. He averaged 18.8 points, 3.9 assists, and 3 rebounds a game.
- Allen "The Answer" Iverson. A product of Virginia, we all know of this guys exploits. He's probably the best little guy ever to play in the league. He's definitely one of the most prolific scoring guards in the history of the NBA game, so you can imagine his impact on the asphalt courts in the park. His unconventional crossovers and quick moves to the basket, as well as his infinitely creative ways to score were definitely born during his years as a street baller. A guy that refuses to conform to the uptight NBA rules, he has managed to be a consistent offensive threat throughout his career. Up to this point, Iverson has put up 26.7 points, 2.2 steals, and 6.2 assists a game