Meanwhile, the memories of every NBA coach, general manager, scout and fan have been wiped. Nobody can remember these players' careers, so there is no benefit of hindsight. Jordan hasn't got six rings, LeBron hasn't made The Decision, Alcindor hasn't converted to Islam and Penny hasn't injured his knee.
So, based purely on height, athleticism and talent at the age of twenty, who would be drafted above whom?
This is the NBA's ultimate fantasy draft.
Shaquille O'Neal (C, 7'1", 325lb)
There are plenty of big men to choose from, but none with Shaq's combination of size and athleticism. Dominant post player with thunderous dunks. His only weakness is his free throw shooting but, with the right coaching, he'll soon hit 70% from the stripe. Loves food.
Wilt Chamberlain (C, 7'1", 275lb)
One of the most impressive physical presences in the draft. Excellent athlete for his size. Can dunk from the free throw line. Needs the ball in his hands to keep him happy. Fills up the box score. Good length (and claims he knows how to use it).
LeBron James (SF, 6'8", 250lb)
The best overall athlete on the board combining incredible strength, speed and leaping ability for his size. He can slash to the basket but needs to work on his jump shot. Potentially a lockdown defender and triple-double waiting to happen. Charismatic and fiercely loyal.
Lew Alcindor (C, 7'2", 225lb)
Not the strongest center on the board but definitely one of the most skilled - he destroyed opponents during the pre-draft workouts with his sweet hook shot. His height makes him nearly unstoppable. Needs to improve his work ethic to become a dominant defensive force. Deeply religious. Rarely smiles.
Magic Johnson (PG, 6'9", 215lb)
Magic was easily the best passer in pre-draft workouts and made everyone around him better. No matter who was on his side, his teams won games with style during the workouts. Has more groupies than the Beatles.
Kevin Garnett (PF, 6'11", 220lb)
Unbelievably skilled forward for his height. Plays with great intensity, especially on the defensive end where he inspired his teammates and led by example. Good passer. Must add weight and avoid making inappropriate cancer jokes.
David Robinson (C, 7'1", 235lb)
Incredible athlete and defensive force with a chiselled physique. He passes the eye test. Can score in the post or out to fifteen feet. During pre-draft workouts, he shied away from one-on-one battles. Favourite film: Saving Private Ryan.
Chris Webber (PF, 6'10", 245lb)
Jack of all trades. Can pass the ball better than any other power forward. Very skilled player, fun to watch. Can hit the occasional three-pointer. Rebounds well. Athletic. Unusually baggy shorts.
Ralph Sampson (PF/C, 7'4", 228lb)
Incredible leaping ability, especially considering his size. Can hit the mid-range jump shot or attack the basket. Decent defender with potential to develop further in this area. Prefers to play away from the basket. Brittle.
Tim Duncan (PF/C, 7'0", 260lb)
Fundamentally sound big man with good size and strength. Does exactly what you want with little fanfare: rebounds, defends, scores. Likes swimming with sharks. Dislikes showing emotion.
Michael Jordan (SG, 6'6", 215lb)
Otherworldly athlete who only slips this far because big men are more desirable. Lockdown defender who can hit the big shot with the game on the line. Fearless competitor. Suffers no fools. Dabbles in golf, baseball and gambling during spare time.
Kobe Bryant (SG, 6'6", 205lb)
See above (but substitute golf, baseball and gambling with soccer, hotel workers and Italian).
Yao Ming (C, 7'6", 310lb)
Simply a massive human being. Fantastic free throw shooter. Solid passer. Can block shots. His upside is off-the-charts. Cultural differences, language barrier and fragile feet are concerns.
Akeem Olajuwon (C, 7'0", 255lb)
Polished post moves and stingy defense are his calling cards. Can dominate at both ends of the court. Draft position hurt slightly by concerns over his real height and age. Chose basketball over soccer and ballet.
Julius Erving (SF, 6'7", 210lb)
His leaping ability has to be seen to be believed. He soars like a bird and can palm the ball with ease. Intelligent (wanted to be a doctor when he was younger) and charismatic. Massive hands.
Allen Iverson (SG, 6'0", 165lb)
Quickest player in the pre-draft combine. Explosive first step. Flashy dribbler with a lethal crossover move. Can score against players a foot taller. Rebellious nature and hatred of practice hurt his draft stock.
Dwight Howard (C, 6'11", 265lb)
Incredible physique - built like superman and can fly like him too. Intimidating shot-blocker. Post moves are somewhat robotic. Weak free throw shooter. Unnaturally happy.
Larry Bird (SF, 6'9", 225lb)
He has polarized scouts and general managers alike. On the one hand he is a lethal shooter, incredible passer and plays every game like his life depends on it. On the other hand he is slow, white and has an awful haircut.
Patrick Ewing (C, 7'0", 240lb)
Scouts love his defensive potential. Very nice jump shot for a center. Good size. A real grafter - which makes up for his mediocre athleticism. A bit plodding at times. Jamaican.
Penny Hardaway (PG, 6'7", 195lb)
Similar skillset to Magic Johnson but not quite as big or strong and, unlike Magic, can shoot the three with regularity. Talented dribbler and passer. Equally adept at taking over a game or deferring to teammates. Potentially a talented defender. Penchant for wearing a plaster on his cheek.
Bill Walton (C, 6'11", 250lb)
Rumoured to be more like 7'1" (was bare-footed when the measurements were taken, which fits the hippy stereotype). Arguably the best all-around center in the draft, he can do it all. Particularly strong on the boards. Ginger.
Shawn Kemp (PF, 6'10", 230lb)
Ferocious dunker and shot-blocker. Extremely gifted athlete with great strength and leaping ability. His game still needs refining but he has all the tools to dominate his position. Developing jump shot. Weight Watchers spokesman.
Dominique Wilkins (SF, 6'8", 230lb)
Offensive machine. Torched Adam Morrison for 63 points in a pre-draft workout. One of the best athletes in the draft and arguably the best dunker but a lazy defender. A highlight reel waiting to happen.
Jason Kidd (PG, 6'4", 195lb)
Good height for his position. Seemingly has eyes in the back of his head. Excellent rebounder for his position. Plays tough defense but can't shoot. Huge head. Unknown ethnicity.
Blake Griffin (PF, 6'10", 251lb)
Tremendous athlete. Explosive forays to the basket. The man you want on the end of your alley-oops. Uncanny dribbling ability for a big man. Strong rebounder and can find the open man. Drives a Skoda. Unknown ethnicity.
Tracy McGrady (SF, 6'8", 235lb)
Cousin of Vince Carter. Excellent all-around ability. Can flat out score the basketball. Excellent range. When he gets hot, he gets really hot. Capable defender... when he wants to be. Exciting player with a flair for the dramatic. Loves to sleep.
Vince Carter (SG, 6'6", 215lb)
Cousin of Tracy McGrady. Recorded the highest vertical leap in the pre-draft combine results. Can score from distance but prefers to attack the basket with reckless abandon. A bit selfish at times. Hates defense and Canada.
Derrick Rose (PG, 6'3", 190lb)
After Iverson, the fastest player in the draft. Incredible first step - can blow past even the toughest defenders. Needs to develop more of a pass-first mentality. Can take over games in the fourth quarter with his scoring ability. Must work on personality.
Dirk Nowitzki (PF, 7'0", 245lb)
The most talented European on the draft board. Exceptional shooting ability, especially for a seven-footer. His fadeaway jump shot is unguardable. One of the most talented offensive players in the draft. Mediocre defender and rebounder. Plans to spend his first paycheck on a sunbed and stylist.
Kevin Durant (SF, 6'9", 215lb)
Similar player to Nowitzki but three inches shorter and twice as cool. Deadly from long range. Potentially a decent defender but must add bulk to his lithe frame. Spokesman for the International Backpacking Community.