• Ryan Tippett

Why Was Christian Laettner On The Dream Team?

Christian Laettner was a trending topic on Twitter which can only ever go two distinctly different ways: exceptionally good or horrifically bad. For Laettner, as you might have guessed, it was the latter. He getting completely pooped on for making the dream team in 1992. What most dense millennials fail to understand is USA Basketball had decided to put at least one amateur athlete on the team, it came down to Laettner or Shaq. If the argument is Shaq should’ve been selected over Laettner it’s because most people have a biased perception on the two based on how their professional careers panned out.

Laettner had arguably the second-best college basketball career ever behind Lew Alcindor or most notably known as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. He went to 4 straight final fours, won 2 national championship, won the 91’/92’ AP Player of the Year, 2-time consensus All American, 3 time All-ACC. The list gets tiresome to type. I, along with most of the living human population, hate Christian Laettner as much as anyone but to say he didn’t deserve a spot on the dream team based off of the criteria used for the selection is absurdly incorrect. Shaq will even tell you he wasn’t as fundamentally sound as Laettner was, he just wasn’t as polished a player at the time. What was controversial at the time wasn’t Laettner being selected over Shaq, it was taking a college player at all.

Well this is certainly a hot take.