Career: Cleveland Cavaliers (USA-NBA, 2003-06)
What a difference two years can make. Lebron James came to the Athens Olympics as the reigning NBA Rookie of the Year, the first teenager to average more than 20 points a game. Everybody was waiting to see basketball's new phenomenon. But expectations were deceived. Unprepared, unaware of the international game, James was a caricature of himself, running and banging without much anticipation. The fact that coach Larry Brown would only use him off the bench in short spurts didn't help either. Two years later, James is coming to Japan as a playoff leader who averaged more than 30 points during his first post-season run - which ended after a seven-game, second round series with the Detroit Pistons. At 21, James was a legitimate contender in the MVP race and proved to everybody that he is a clutch player by making numerous buzzer beater in the 2006 NBA Playoffs.
On a very, very fast track to the Hall of Fame, James can create on offense like few other players in the game. Averaged 31.4 points, 6.6 rebounds and as many assists in his third NBA season. Not enough? Just remember that he followed that by scoring 30.8 ppg while shooting nearly 48% in his first 13 playoff games.