Top 10 Best NBA Players of All Time

The Top Ten
1 Michael Jordan Michael Jeffrey Jordan, also known by his initials, MJ, is an American retired professional basketball player.

MJ, Kareem, and Wilt are the top three of all time. Some folks voting on this need a history lesson or just need to grow up.

Iverson, Caruso, Wade, and Chris Paul in the top 25 of all time? No way. Iverson was a ball hog who never led a team to the NBA championship, Caruso is a joke, Wade was an excellent player but not an "all-time" great, and Chris Paul gets a tremendous amount of credit for a guy that has never won it all. Those who say he didn't have enough good players around him are delusional.

Won 6 championships, would have won more if he hadn't retired for brief moments during his career. He also had 6 Finals appearances and never lost, which proves he could go off when it mattered most.

He won 5 MVPs and would have won more except the NBA was tired of him having all that success. He was on some stacked teams, but they were only stacked because Jordan made all his teammates good. He is the greatest player at being clutch, he is the greatest scorer of all time, he is a top 10 dunker of all time, and he is the 4th best defender of all time.

No, LeBron is not even a top 10 defender. The only thing Jordan really lacked was 3-point shooting, but he didn't really need to shoot 3s because he could just splash mid-range jumpers about 70% of the time. Michael Jordan is the GOAT.

2 Magic Johnson Earvin "Magic" Johnson Jr. is a retired American professional basketball player who played point guard for the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association for 13 seasons.

All I have to say is if Magic had played longer than 9 seasons, he could have been the GOAT. At the pace he was going, he could have been the all-time assist leader, all-time steals leader, one of the all-time scoring leaders, and he could have been on top of every major and most minor statistic.

The same case with other greats like Bird, Pettit, and Maravich. But of course, he had other issues. Still, he is a top 10 player of all time.

Magic was an incredible competitor who elevated the games of his teammates. Basketball is a team game, despite ESPN's obsession with offensive statistics, dunks, and 3-point shots.

Magic could play every position, even playing center in the 1980 Finals. I am a long-time Celtic fan, but I have to place Magic as the second-best player to have ever played.

3 LeBron James LeBron Raymone James is an American professional basketball player for the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association. LeBron has played for the Cleveland Cavaliers, Miami Heat, and the Lakers.

LeBron is superior to anyone. The man is a beast and can excel from anywhere on the court. He's achieved things at a young age that no one else has. He has made basketball his own and is rewriting history! He possesses everything you could want in a basketball player: talent, brains, humbleness, sportsmanship, hunger, confidence, and he's a great team player.

Those who don't appreciate his talent are too ignorant to realize that he obviously deserves all he's achieved and has worked hard for his accomplishments. He deserves more credit than what he receives. He's an amazing person and basketball player. #G.O.A.T

4 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is an American retired professional basketball player who played 20 seasons in the National Basketball Association for the Milwaukee Bucks and Los Angeles Lakers.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is arguably the greatest NBA player of all time. He was drafted to the Milwaukee Bucks, a 27-win team, and in only his second season, he won the MVP, and the Bucks won 66 games and the NBA Finals.

He's a six-time MVP, six-time NBA Champion, the all-time leader in points, the all-time leader in All-Star appearances, one of the greatest passing big men, one of the greatest interior defenders, and the master of the sky hook.

Stats alone have him as an all-time great. Then you add in his championship pedigree and putting a team on his back in his early years. He's the definition of a GOAT.

5 Larry Bird Larry Joe Bird is an American retired professional basketball player who played for the Boston Celtics of the National Basketball Association. Bird is a 3x champ, 1x ROTY, 1x Finals MVP, 3x 3PT Contest winner, all with the Boston Celtics. (1979-1992)

Larry Bird is very underrated. He won three championships, but his competition, especially in the finals, was tough. Sure, you could say Larry had McHale and Parish, but do you really think those two guys are better than James Worthy and Kareem? I don't think so.

Bird was one of the NBA's first marksmen and has three 3-point shootout wins to show for it. Bird was so confident in his ability, which made him one of the greatest trash talkers. What sets him apart from the rest is that he actually kept his word.

Also, Bird had so many injuries during his 13-year career and yet played through them. He may also be the clutchest player, along with MJ. Bird is one of the few athletes who successfully had a great coaching career. He won Coach of the Year and Executive of the Year and led the Pacers to their only finals appearance against Jordan. So, yeah.

6 Wilt Chamberlain Wilton Norman "Wilt" Chamberlain was an American basketball player. He was born on August 21, 1936 in Philadelphia and died on October 12, 1999 in Los Angeles due to heart failure... read more

People say Jordan's the best, but I'm leaning towards this guy. People continuously try to discredit his achievements by talking about how they were in the '50s. It doesn't matter if it was in the '50s and '60s. He still would have had to put the ball in the basket 50 times to score 100, he would have had to put the ball in the basket 25.2 times every game to average 50.4, and he would have had to have played every second of every game, including overtime, to average whatever the ridiculous stat is that he got with his minutes.

People love to talk about Jordan's free-throw line dunk, but what they don't know is that instead of shooting free throws, Wilt would just jump and dunk the ball from the free-throw line. That's why the rule exists. Wilt was also very strong, being able to deadlift about 500 pounds if my memory serves me correctly.

Nobody is as athletic as Wilt either. People from his era estimate that he had about a 48"-58" vertical. This guy was an absolute freak of nature.

7 Kobe Bryant Kobe Bryant (1978 - 2020) was an American retired professional basketball player. He played his entire 20-year career with the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association. Kobe Bryant has won 5 NBA championships with the Lakers and was the all-time leading scorer in Lakers franchise history... read more

Kobe Bryant was one of those players who showed a really interesting game. It was not just about the number of points scored, rebounds, and assists. He displayed incredible skill in the game. Kobe made very difficult, well-thought-out, and non-standard shots.

He was good in all aspects on the basketball court, unlike those who can score only open three-pointers, or stand under the ring waiting for a pass, or take other easy shots. He was the team leader, and he truly deserved this title. He always gave 100% and more, and was the locomotive of his team.

8 Bill Russell William Felton "Bill" Russell was an American retired professional basketball player. Russell played center for the Boston Celtics of the National Basketball Association from 1956 to 1969.

In the era of ESPN, where there exists an obsession with offense, dunks, and 3-point shots, fans under 40 don't appreciate Bill Russell. In addition to Russell's 11 rings, he also won two NCAA championships at the unheralded University of San Francisco. Russell was a fabulous athlete with an unmatched intensity for the game. He understood that basketball is a team game and he made his teammates better players.

Bill Russell was the best basketball player ever to put on a uniform.

Why is he at number 8? We all know he's in the Mount Rushmore of NBA players, ranked 4th best of all time, behind Kareem, LeBron, and MJ. Also, why is Magic Johnson number two? Put him at 7 or something.

Bill Russell has 11 NBA championships and 5 league MVPs. He's also 2nd in rebounding all-time and 1st all-time in rebounding in the playoffs. He was also the first person to block shots. And he led the Celtics to the greatest run in sports history, with 8 consecutive league titles.

9 Tim Duncan Timothy Theodore "Tim" Duncan is an American professional basketball player who has played his entire career for the San Antonio Spurs of the National Basketball Association.

Tim Duncan was one of the most loyal players in the NBA. He stayed with his team throughout his career, never making a rash decision to join other all-stars like some players.

Although he wasn't a regular on SportsCenter's top 10, he consistently did the fundamental things that helped his team win. Every year Duncan played, the Spurs were a playoff team.

As a Lakers fan, I would have taken him as my centerpiece over Kobe or LeBron any day. He didn't need superstars around him. He made everyone around him look like superstars.

Four-time NBA champion and two-time MVP. The greatest power forward of all time is an amazing player in the game of basketball.

I like the way he plays the game.

10 Shaquille O'Neal Shaquille Rashaun O'Neal, nicknamed Shaq, is a retired American professional basketball player who is currently an analyst on the television program Inside the NBA. He is known for his fun, friendly personality, and is one of the most beloved athletes of all time.

Shaquille O'Neal's ability to dunk was extraordinary. It's rare to see anyone dunk with such force that it seems like they could break the backboard. Although NBA backboards are designed to withstand a lot, Shaq's dunks were seriously powerful.

He may have been a bit slow, and his shooting wasn't the best, but he remains a great basketball player.

Shaquille O'Neal, also known as The Diesel, Big Aristotle, or Shaq Fu, was one of the greatest. His prime years were during his time with Orlando and Los Angeles.

Had he stayed with the Lakers, we might be talking about several championships in the 2000s.

The Contenders
11 Hakeem Olajuwon Hakeem Abdul Olajuwon, formerly known as Akeem Olajuwon, is a Nigerian-American retired professional basketball player.

Hakeem Olajuwon was a force to be reckoned with, dominating players like Shaq, Ewing, and Robinson. He may not have had overpowering strength in the low block, but his footwork was akin to a ballet dancer's, combined with a silky smooth jumper.

No one seemed to have an answer for him.

Hakeem the Dream is so good. He made it to the US team. I think he is better than Shaq, so he should be top 8!

One of the best centers of all time, he led the Houston Rockets to win in 1994 and 1995 when MJ retired. Olajuwon took the chance to win when MJ was not there.

12 Oscar Robertson Oscar Palmer Robertson, nicknamed "The Big O", is an American retired National Basketball Association player who played for the Cincinnati Royals and Milwaukee Bucks.

Very underrated! Should be in the top 10. Much better than Kobe, who has missed the most field goals of all time. The Big O averaged a triple-double for three straight seasons.

Kids today will never know about the Big O. It is a shame that there weren't enough video cameras back then. They could've captured highlight after highlight.

Big O is far too underrated! It's unfortunate that he had to go against Bill Russell and the Celtics in his prime.

Imagine if he knew what a triple-double was during his career!

13 Kevin Durant Kevin Wayne Durant is an American professional basketball player for the Brooklyn Nets of the National Basketball Association. He has played for the Oklahoma City Thunder, Golden State Warriors, and the Nets. He was MVP of the 2017 and 2018 NBA Finals.

Listed at 6'9, but we all know damn well he's over 7'0. Loyalty aside, he can get to the cup, hit 3's at an above-average rate, and has his mid-range game down to a science.

He is the best offensive player the game has ever seen. He should be at least top 10. At the end of his career, I hope we put aside his awful move to Golden State and just realize that this guy is a legend.

Kevin Durant is arguably the greatest scorer in history, second only to Michael Jordan. He's one of the most skilled players of all time, versatile and surprisingly underrated defensively.

With his impressive stats, he's undoubtedly a top ten player. When it comes to sheer basketball talent, KD might even be in the top 5, or perhaps the top 3.

14 Julius Erving Julius Winfield Erving II, commonly known by the nickname Dr. J, is an American retired basketball player who helped popularize a modern style of play that emphasizes leaping and playing above the rim.

Dr. J inspired Michael Jordan to be an amazing dunker and the best of all time. His moves were unlike anyone else. He was one of the best dunkers ever.

Without Dr. J, most of those above him on this list wouldn't be known. Doc saved the game, if you ask me.

He did everything MJ did before he did it, from the dunk at the foul line to the no-looker and reverse layups. Dr. J should be way higher than this!

15 Allen Iverson Allen Ezail Iverson is an American retired professional basketball player who played for 14 seasons in the National Basketball Association.

Allen Iverson is, pound for pound, one of the greatest, if not the greatest, players of all time. He played with unmatched heart and passion every night of his NBA career. The Answer was lightning quick and extremely fast, could finish at the rim amazingly well, and could make incredible passes even though it's not his forte.

He and LeBron are the only ones who took a weak team to the finals. With better teammates, there's no doubt in my mind that he could've won a few rings during his career. With a career average of 26.7 points per game, he dominated the late '90s and early '00s.

16 Jerry West Jerry Alan West was an American basketball player who played his entire professional career for the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association.

Jerry West would outperform most of the players mentioned here. He wasn't just a great shooter but also an exceptional defender.

Unmatched in clutch situations, he set the standard for every guard that followed him.

He should be higher than Curry. I mean, he is on the NBA logo!

I have no words to say. The Logo at number 33? Are you serious?

17 Alex Caruso
18 John Stockton John Houston Stockton is an American retired professional basketball player. He spent his entire professional playing career as a point guard for the Utah Jazz of the National Basketball Association, from 1984 to 2003. Stockton is regarded as one of the best point guards of all time, holding the NBA... read more

The man defined his position and is the all-time leader in assists and steals. What more do you want out of your point guard? Controversial top 10 for me, but no less than top 20.

All-time NBA career assists and steals leader.

John is underrated. I mean, he leads the NBA in assists and steals. Go John Stockton!

19 Dirk Nowitzki Dirk Werner Nowitzki is a German professional basketball player for the Dallas Mavericks of the National Basketball Association.

Fantastic all-around player who doesn't get nearly enough recognition for his accomplishments.

How do you put a guy like Kwame Brown over a legend like Dirk?! What?!

Really OP point guard. No wonder Dallas won in 2011.

20 Charles Barkley Charles Wade Barkley is an American retired professional basketball player and current analyst on the television program Inside the NBA.

Placing Draymond Green above Sir Charles Barkley on this list seems misguided. It's surprising how voters can overlook Barkley's achievements.

He's a close second to Duncan for the best power forward of all time, with Karl Malone just behind him. In my opinion, Dirk Nowitzki ranks about sixth among the greatest power forwards.

The Round Mound of Rebound. Sir Charles was the Incredible Bulk. At 6'6, he dominated other power forwards who stand at about 6'9.

21 Chris Paul Christopher Emmanuel Paul is an American professional basketball player for the Phoenix Suns of the National Basketball Association.

Chris Paul is the best player. He will cross, shoot, or do a cool layup on anybody.

Best point guard ever.

22 Isiah Thomas Isiah Lord Thomas III is an American former basketball player who played professionally for the Detroit Pistons in the National Basketball Association.

One of the toughest individuals to ever step out onto the court! He is one of the reasons Michael Jordan couldn't get to the NBA Finals until the '90s, considering his Detroit Pistons handled him so well.

23 Kawhi Leonard Kawhi Anthony Leonard is an American professional basketball player for the Los Angeles Clippers of the National Basketball Association. He has played for the San Antonio Spurs, Toronto Raptors, and the Clippers.
24 Dwyane Wade Dwyane Tyrone Wade Jr. is an American professional basketball player for the Miami Heat of the National Basketball Association.

Dwyane Wade is just an all-around incredible player. I really enjoy watching old games from the Heat dynasty where I see Dwyane can do anything.

Top twenty for sure.

How is Chris Bosh higher than Dwyane!? I mean, I like Chris Bosh, but Dwyane Wade was way more legendary.

He turned Miami into a mega team with 3 championships and one Finals MVP.

25 Derrick Rose

Derrick Rose lost a lot when he got injured and is not his MVP self anymore.

Too bad his injury ruined his career.

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