With the current work stoppage in the NBA, players are looking for jobs all over the world. Some of them have some experience in the beautiful game,while some of them don’t even know the rules – but we picked 11 players who could and should try their luck in European football.
So, with no further ado, here are the 11 (in a 4-2-2 formation) NBA players that should enjoy a football career.
Goalkeeper – Dirk Nowitzki
He’s German, so already better than most of English goalkeepers. With an imposing 2.13 meters he would be tough to beat in the air. He should join Schalke, which is looking for a goalkeeper to replace Manuel Neuer.
Right back – Tony Parker
San Antonio’s French guard has played soccer before. Fast and reliable, he’s the perfect right back. He should join Arsenal, which is missing Bacary Sagna. He’ll feel right at home with the French influence at The Emirates.
Left Back – Josh Smith
The Atlanta Hawks forward is one of the best defenders in the game. Long and agile, he can play anywhere in defence, but is best suited for a full back position. He might be a lot more reliable defensively than Gael Clichy in Manchester City.
Center Back – Lebron James
The Miami Heat star is one of the owners of Liverpool and he might help them solve the problem that is Martin Skrtel. James, one of the strongest NBA players, is 2.03m and very intimidating. He can be a Ledley King kind of center back, only without the injuries. The only problem is that he would like to beknown as ”The King”, and in Anfield there is only one king – Kenny Dalglish.
Center Back – Pau Gasol
The Los Angeles Lakers forward-center is one of the best players in the NBA, and his Catalan heritage will help him get a place next to Gerard Pique when Carles Puyol is injured. The tall (2.13 m) Spanish international was brought up in FC Barcelona’s famous academy, so he should know a few things about Tiki Taka.
Defensive Midfielder – Dwight Howard
The Orlando Magic Center is exactly the kind of beast that every 4-4-2 team needs in the midfield. A Patrick Vieira kind of player, Howard (AKA Superman) can send shivers down the spines of his opponents. A devout Christian since his youth, Howard can be perfect for AS Roma. He might enjoythe Italian lifestyle and the proximity to the Vatican.
Center Midfield – Manu Ginobili
Every team needs a reliable passer and tackler who can score once in a while. With a great work ethic, little ego and solid skills, Ginobili is your guy. Italso helps that he’s Argentinean. Perfect signing for Valencia.
Right Wing – Rajon Rondo
The Boston Celtics guard is one of the fastest players in the NBA and loves to impose himself on the game – much like Gareth Bale. With a few training sessions he might become a better right winger than Theo Walcott. Arsene, sign him!
Left wing – Chris Paul
The New Orleans star is speedy, loves passing and has a combative attitude. His low center of gravity should give him an advantage on the football field. Would be a terrific addition to any team that is desperate for strength and skill.
9 and a half – Steve Nash
Nash is probably the best soccer player in the NBA. His brother played for Canada, and he is friends with Alessandro Del Piero and Thierry Henry. One of the smartest athletes on the planet, Nash even owns a Canadian team. He should play for Tottenham, his favorite team. He might offer a good replacement for Luka Modric, when the Croat leaves eventually.
Striker (number 9) – Kobe Braynt
For all his love for Barcelona, the Tiki Taka passing game may not be the thing for the NBA’s best player. But with his height, desire to score and Italian upbringing, he may be better striker than Marouane Chamakh. He would love to link up with Inter’s Wesley Sneijder in his favorite country outside the US – Italy.