As the 2021-22 NBA season nears tipoff, the league is also gearing up to celebrate the 75th anniversary of its existence. Along with a special diamond logo and special games to highlight the league’s history, the NBA will also unveil the 75th anniversary team, which will take place during the opening week of the regular season. The 75th anniversary team was chosen by a combination of media members, current and former players, coaches, general managers and team executives.
In a press release on Tuesday morning, the NBA said the 75 players will be announced over the course of three days, between Oct. 19 through Oct. 21. Ahead of the first game of the season on Oct. 19 between the defending champion Milwaukee Bucks and Brooklyn Nets, “NBA on TNT” will announce the first 25 players on the list.
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On the following night, prior to the tipoff between the Celtics and New York Knicks, ESPN will release the next batch of 25 players to be honored. The final 25 members will be revealed on Oct. 21, ahead of the matchup between the Dallas Mavericks and Atlanta Hawks.
In addition to the unveiling of the 75th anniversary team, the NBA also announced that it has chosen five former NBA players to serve as ambassadors over the course of the 2021-22 season in celebration of the league’s 75th anniversary. Those five players are Hall of Famers Clyde Drexler, Magic Johnson, Bob Pettit and Oscar Robinson, in addition to NBA champion and 14-time All-Star Dirk Nowitzki.
It will be interesting to see how the 75th anniversary team differs from the 50th anniversary team that the league unveiled back in 1996, specifically how many active players are added to the list, and which retired players potentially get bumped from it. Superstars like LeBron James and Kevin Durant should be shoe-ins to be named to the 75th anniversary list, but it will be intriguing to see if any younger names make a surprise appearance on the roster.