Best Rocket - 2007
It's been a long, long time since the Houston Rockets have done anything in the playoffs, but hope springs eternal. Tracy McGrady and Yao Ming are the Rockets' superstars, but when it comes to quiet, solid contributions to the team, forward Shane Battier is the real superstar. Rarely out of position or outhustled on defense, he's long been considered an ultimate team-first guy. Plus he's a brainiac from Duke who speaks fluent German, plays jazz trumpet and — unless Obama gets there first — could just end up being the nation's first black president. (It's not so far-fetched: He famously asked his mother, when he was just three years old, whether he'd make a good president.) Battier brings nothing but good to the Rockets. Now if he'd only help them get past the first round of the NBA playoffs, we'd be happy.