As far as basketball goes, Ballarat's Ray Borner has done it all.
His professional resume includes four Olympic Games appearances and an NBL MVP award.
He matched up against some of the top players in the world - many of whom were household names and others that could have been.
Now enjoying retirement, Borner sat down with The Courier to list the 10 best players he encountered throughout his 30-year career.
Most, you would have heard of, but others might surprise you. All of them however, possessed talent and ability that was undeniable.
5. Andrew Gaze
Considered by many as the Michael Jordan of Australian basketball, Andrew Gaze is one of the few players with more Olympic appearances than Borner. Gaze wasn't the most athletic player running around, but he could shoot the lights out. He was tough too. Borner spent years roughing him up in the National Basketball League, but it never did much good.
"I would belt him every time he ran into the key and at the end of the game he would still be running around," Borner said.
Borner said Gaze scored so easily, teams would often focus their attention on shutting down his teammates. Gaze retired with two NBL championships and seven Most Valuable Player trophies.
4. Luc Longley
He was a long-time member of the famous Michael Jordan-led Chicago Bulls team, yet Luc Longley still seems underrated. Borner agrees. Having played alongside him at three Olympic Games, Borner said Longley was the ultimate teammate. He wasn't a big scorer, but he created for others. More importantly, as the first Australian to play in the National Basketball Association, Borner said Longley paved the way for other Australians to do the same.
"Basketball is a team game and he was a team player," Borner said.
It's no wonder Jordan kept him around all those years.
3. Phil Smyth
If there was ever a player to fall victim to his era, Borner said it was Phil Smyth. With an elite ability to pass, shoot and handle the ball, Borner said Smyth was one of the best guards in the world.
"If he had played now he would have been in the NBA, but back then you had to go through US college to get looked at" Borner said.
There was simply nothing he couldn't do. Even at six-foot-one inches tall, dunking was no obstacle for Smyth who played alongside Borner at multiple Olympic Games.
"If you wanted somebody to hit a winning shot, he would do it," Borner said.
2. Drazen Petrovic
Perhaps the greatest player to ever come out of Europe, Drazen Petrovic's career was tragically cut short after he died in a car accident in 1993. Borner experienced the Croatian's brilliance at the 1986 world championships and again at the Barcelona Olympics. With a fiery edge, and elite court smarts, Borner said his ability to penetrate, dribble and shoot the ball saw him excel internationally and later the NBA. He made sure the USA Dream Team earned their Olympic gold medal in 1992.
1. Arvydas Sabonis
In all Borner's years in basketball, he said he never shared a court with a player as impressive as Lithuania's Arvydas Sabonis. At seven-foot-three, Sabonis was enormous. But it was his skillset that made him unstoppable, Borner said. After first witnessing Sabonis as a teenager, Borner encountered him again at the 1986 world championships, where Sabonis made short work of the Australians.
"He could pull up for three or go around the back. He just did it all," Borner said.
Borner last saw Sabonis at the 1996 Olympics, where he led Lithuania to a bronze medal..
WATCH: Sabonis vs Australia
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