Robert Horry says Hakeem Olajuwon is best center he ever played with. Yes, better than Shaq.

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Robert Horry was in the middle of a couple of decades of some of the NBA’s best teams — the 1990s Rockets, the early 2000s Lakers, the mid-2000s Spurs — which is how he went on to rack up seven NBA rings. His fearlessness in big moments earned him the moniker Big Shot Rob.

He also played with three of the games’ greatest big men ever — Hakeem Olajuwon, Shaquille O’Neal, and Tim Duncan. No way to choose the greatest among those greats, right?

Wrong. Horry told Mundo Deportivo it wasn’t hard at all, part of a Q& A (translation help from Google translate).

You played with Hakeem Olajuwon, Shaquille O’Neal, and Tim Duncan, three of the greatest big men in NBA history. I guess it’s difficult for you to say who’s the best…

No, no it’s not. It’s very easy.

Who’s the best then?

‘The Dream’ (Olajuwon) was the best. He had everything they had the other two, but more. For example, The Dream could do everything he did ‘ Shaq ‘ but also got free throws. And the truth is that the other two learned from Olajuwon, who was the best center and the best power forward history. What defines these bigs is not what they could do but what they could not do. And The Dream could do everything.

Because of the passage time — and that we associate the 1990s with Michael Jordan — Olajuwon can get overlooked. But you will never find a more polished, higher IQ big man than him. He was more than “the dream shake,” he had counters for his counter moves. He was next to unstoppable.

There’s a reason all of today’s bigs (not to mention guys like LeBron James and Kobe Bryant who work in the post) make a pilgrimage to Houston to work out with Olajuwon — they know there is a lot to learn there. He is the guru.

And he deserves a seat at the table with the best ever.

(Hat tip Hoopshype)