Best NBA Players of All Time

The Top Ten

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

The age old argument... LeBron or Jordan. I got LeBron as #2 and Jordan is still the GOAT for me. Nearly unrivaled athleticism, perfect finals record, all those MVP's, all-NBA and all-defensive team selections, his legendary trash talk, and his work ethic made him number 1 for me. Also, he obviously played less than most NBA greats, he retired twice and played like what 13-14 seasons? It's about the quality of your career, not the quantity. Jordan's career was as close you could get to perfect.

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, 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, and 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.

First off what is this list? Even Bleacher Report's list is better than this. I just typed this here because I know everyone will see it here. Anyways let's just look at his resume for a bit. 6 for 6 in the finals, finals MVP for all of them, 14x all star, #5 in all time scoring list (32,292), many clutch shots and out of any player has the most memorable and extraordinary performances we have seen. The flu game, winning the championship after his father died, those performances. To put it shortly he's the GOAT. HE WILL PROBABLY KEEP THAT TITLE FOR A LONG LONG LONG LONG LONG TIME. I ALSO THINK HE IS ONE OF THE GREATEST ATHLETES OF ALL TIME.

M J made the Game of basketball just plane old exciting! You could never sit down this man is the GOAT better than lebron better than anybody $ you Michael

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. On the pace he was going at, he could have been the all time assist leader, all time steals leader, one of the all time scoring leaders, he could have literally been on the top of every major and most minor statistics ever. Same case with other greats like Bird, Pettit, and Maravich. But of course he had other issues but hey still a top 10 player all time.

By far the most over rated player ever.! He was blessed in his championship game in college to have 2 or 3? Other NBA players on his team playing a Larry Bird led team that had a bunch of unknowns, etc. Then he was blessed with the best shooting center of all time (percentage wise) = assists. And don't get me going on his passes that he MADE look harder than they were by looking away at the last minute! He was a top 40-50 player and that's it! With out Kareem the best player on that team he would not be half as popular with the fans. Media created most of him.
P.S. he was the first that got away with carrying the ball on every other play...now they all do it!

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.

Just because Kobe has a 99 in 2k and magic has a 98, magic is better. Even though he's fifth all time in assist and john stockton is number 1, Who had the cooler passes? This guy

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.

Sick of haters always using LeBron's lack of rings against him, especially when you look at his playoff record he generally played very well, better than some jumped up stars with more rings, that had better support to get those rings anyway or they had easier opposition! No way should Kobe be above LeBron! What goes against him for me is twice leaving his home team, though having said that at least he played for his home state at all, no question he'd have had at least twice as many NBA wins if he spent most of his career under strong teams and changing ship when needed...

He has it all bulky yet fast and skilled on the court, team oriented mind unlike one ball hogger on this list.. Broken tons of NBA records and will continue to do so, while I don't condone his team switching he did give so many years to an inferior franchise and it must have been utterly frustrating all those prime years and only 1 ring to show for it. If he had been an inferior player like Dwight Howard or ...more

LeBron is obviously the best. He dominates in points and plows through players. 3 championships, 4 MVPS. 3rd most all-time points. This dude will probably pass Jabbar to be honest. Overrated but good

LeBron James was the star of the Cavaliers and dragged them to 4 straight finals appearances. When he left they immediately became one of the worst teams in the league. Michael Jordan led the Bulls to 3 straight finals wins. When he left they made it to the second round of the playoffs.

Overcame a 3-1 lead to the 73-9 Warriors with the first ever unanimous 2 time mvp Steph Curry. Simply, put the most dominant and game changing player of all time

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.

Everyone else here already explained it for all you people so I'm just showing everyone who might see this that I support their claims.

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.

MJ is the GOAT but Abdul-Jabbar is a close second, all-time scoring leader on a list where Jordan is 4th. Kareem was also a great defender, because of his height. Kareem should be second on the list. Go Bucks.

Excuse me all you goons, look at his name what a beauty I mean common abdul-jabbar that's like star wars quality. Plus he's won the most MVP's and is all time leader in points scored. KAAREEM REPRESENT!

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)

Undoubtedly one of the greatest players of all time. 3x champion, 3 point contest champion, one of the greatest shooters and passers ever. The GOAT at trash talking and one of the toughest players physically and mentally.

Larry Bird is the best overall player ever! His numbers are simply amazing considering that he only had about 7-8 good years b4 his body betrayed him. Crazy numbers in a short amount of time. Imagine Bird staying healthy and playing for about 15-18 years! He scored 49 points, had 14 rebounds and 12 assists with a back brace on during his last season. He could barely put his uniform b4 game! Laugh out loud

Larry Legend was badass in every way. You couldn't intimidate him one bit. He didn't need athleticism to compete, he just knew how to pick his spots on offense, where to pass, and how to defend and rebound at a high rate.

Best small forward ever to play the game. He won 3 championships but he was alone. He would have won more if is back hadn't been hurt.

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.

He was a fantastic player. I remember a Los Angeles Lakers - Boston Celtics match where Kobe and Lamar Odom played so good, that was when I saw Kobe Bryant the first time and he becomes one of my favorite player via NBA teams.
Rest in Peace Kobe Bryant!
You made important chapter in NBA and US Basketball history!

RIP to a legend first of all. And yes Kobe is up there. Probably had the most legendary work ethic of any player alongside Pistol Pete.

Kobe Bryant the one of those players, who showed a really interesting game, not just the number of points scored, rebounds and assists, he showed incredible skill of the game, very difficult scored, thought out and non-standard throws. Kobe is good in all aspects on the basketball court, unlike those who can score only open three-pointers, or stand under the ring and wait for the pass, or other easy shots. He was the team leader, and he really deserved this title. He always laid out 100% and more, and he was the locomotive of his team.

Kobe's accomplishments & numbers are not very far off Jordan's.. Now let's consider that he played near half his career as a 2nd fiddle to Shaq.. That alone beside the achillies injury & the fact he came into the league as an experiment & had to wait for playing time & to become a focal point in the offense hurts his stats.. But straight up by the eye test Kobe was as good as it gets.. Complete package mentally, physically, both ends of the floor.. And of course his competitive drive & killer instinct is what really puts him over the top of everyone else on this list..

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.

Um I do have an unpopular opinion that Wilt should be lower on the list. He wasn't a team player which resulted in his team always falling to the Celtics, he also under-performed in the playoffs. Also he wasn't as freakishly athletic as most people would think. Wilt did not have a 48 inch vertical, the stories say he could reach the top of the backboard which is 13 feet. If he did have a 48 inch vertical he would reach way past that. Thanks to some curious people and technology, people estimated his vertical was like 7-9 inches less than what he said his vertical was. Okay that part was unimportant but just in case anyone wanted to know... Wilt is still like top 10 all time though there's no denying he is an all time great and one of the most dominant players in a sport ever. He's also in the volleyball hall of fame and he was a decathlete

Very underrated on this list! He should be at least in the top 5! Like, come on. The guy got 100 points in a game, he had 118 fifty point games in his career, he averaged 50.4 points per game in 1961-62, he is first in all-time rebounds and 1 of 2 people in NBA history to get more than 20 000 rebounds, and he is first in rebounds per game (22.9), he had 54 rebounds in 1 game. He is second in points per game, next to MJ. After all that, he's still not in the top 5? Second most dominant player ever in the NBA (next to shaq). He's the best center of all time, no question. Shaq was lazy and didn't work hard later in his career, plus he was overweight. Wilt always worked hard to get the ball from the opponent. Bill Russell couldn't play offense, and relied on his teammates to do the work up the floor. Wilt could play defense, with an extremly high vertical, was the only person that could outrebound Russell. Most of their regular season meets, Wilt's team would win. Kareem had all his great ...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 50's. It doesn't matter if it was in the 50's and 60's, he still would've had to put the ball in the basket 50 times to score 100, he would've had to put the ball in the basket 25.2 times every game to average 50.4, and he would've 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 correct. 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.

Best statistical player in NBA history. People had to change the rules because of this man. 50 points averaged in a season. Better than Jordan

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

Best defensive player ever. Period. There is no way I would take anyone over him defensively, not even Dwight Howard, Kevin Garnett, or Hakeem Olajuwon.

In the era of ESPN where there exists an obsession of OFFENSE, dunks and 3 point shots, fans under 40 don't appreciate Bill Russell. In addition to Russell's 11 rings, he also won 2 NCCA championships at 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.

He is one of those guys under the basket, where you really can't do anything about it. He is there, he is getting the rebounds, that's it.

What an absolute JOKE. I am born and raised in Boston and he doesn't even crack top 3 best Celtic all time. He won when there were 10 teams in the league and most players had a second job, the league was a JOKE. A center shooting 44% and only averaging 15 ppg when you are one of two 7 foot plus players is terrible. When the foul lane was changed to 16 feet he only averaged 12 ppg. Imagine him trying to defend Shaq, Hakeem, Dwight Howard, or Dikembe? Get him off this list immediately.

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.

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.

One of the most loyal players ever. Stuck together with the team and never made a dumb decision to go play with other all stars like LeBrick Lames. Never appeared on sportscenter top 10, but did the basic things to win. Every year he played, the Spurs were a playoff team.

Four time NBA champion and two time MVP. The Greatest power forward of all time is an amazing player to the game of basketball. I like the way he plays the game.

Tim Duncan is the greatest power forward ever. That is a fact. He has been consistent since 1997! That is 16 years. It's a crime to not put this guy in the top 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.

ShaQ can dunk. Who in the world can dunk like that like breaking glasses. The NBA's backboards are too good to break but for him to break the backboard like that is too serious. He is kind of slow his shooting isn't all that great but he is still a great Basketball player.

The Diesel, Big Aristotle, Shaq Fu, whatever you wanna call him was one of the greatest. His days in Orlando and Los Angeles were the prime years of his career. Had he remained a Laker, we could be talking about multiple championships in the 00's.

Shaq is a lot like Wilt Chamberlain, except that Shaq is shorter, slower, weaker, fatter, and had way less stamina and substantially less vertical.

Definitely better than Wilt Chamberlain. How is Shaq not in the top 5. He is the best center ever. Great Player.

Um, excuse me sir, where can I find the weed you're smoking? Because Wilt was without a doubt better than Shaq. Wilt was stronger, faster, more athletic. Wilt could've dunked on Shaq and then blocked every shot he took in the game

The Newcomers

? Nikola Jokic Nikola Jokić is a Serbian professional basketball player for the Denver Nuggets of the National Basketball Association.
? Bol Bol

The Contenders

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

Hakeem destroyed the likes of Shaq, Ewing, Robinson. On the low block, he never had powerful strength but he resembled footwork of a ballet dancer, combined with a silky smooth jumper and no one had an answer for him.

Hakeem the dream is so good made it to the use team I think he is better than Shaq so he should be top 8!

Hakeem is just an absolute baller. He is an all rounder and a nice guy.

Hakeem is at least number 9

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 of any player. The big O averaged a triple-double for 3 straight seasons.

3-time college player of the year. 6-time NBA assist leader, averaged a combinrd triple-double for the first 5 years in the league.

Kids today will never know about the Big O. It is a shame that there werent enough video cameras back then. Couldve captured highlight after highlight.

One time NBA chamion and one time MVP. The big "O" has the most double doubles in NBA history and is the only player to avarege a triple double per game.

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, Can get to the cup, can hit 3's at an above average rate, basically got his mid range game down to a science. The best offensive player the game has ever seen. 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.

Durant and Lebron are equily good in my opinion. Kevin is a better three shooter but lebron is better in the paint.

How is he better than Larry Bird, Allen Iverson, John Stockton, Dwyane Wade, Clyde Drexler, and Karl Malone. kd is overrated

Kevin durant shooting and dunks are awesome and he is very fast

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.

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!

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

Come on he made nba and aba exciting and he has a better record than Lebron 3-0 vs 3-8

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

Jerry West would eat most of the players here alive. He was not only a great shooter but he was also an exceptional defender. He was unmatched in clutch time and set the standard for every guard after 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?

He would destroy steph curry

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, player 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, could make incredible passes even though it's not his forte. Him and LeBron are the only ones who took a weak team to the finals despite, with better teammates there's not a doubt in my mind that he could've won a few rings during his career. With a career average of 26.7 ppg, he dominated the late 90s and early 00s.

I'll agree that he was the best scorer but come on top 10 player of all time?

Allen iverson shouldn't even be in the top 30 of all time. He had ball handling, could shoot decently, OK defense but never did anything with his career. Great players make their team great like lebron on the cavs, shaq on the magic. Yeah, they had some role players but no star players. Allen iverson got decent talent also but never did anything with it.

Better than Darius and he can cross shoot and pass he is a good passer he ecspecially deserves to be in the NBA and has good defense. He can dominate the basket whenever he can score shoot and steal the ball.

His moves were slick and, despite his ego getting in the way, he could score and dump off some great passes. Greatly underrated, possibly because of his off-court troubles.

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.

John is underrated I mean he leads the NBA in assists and steal s go John Stockton

All time NBA career assists and steals leaders.

He should be higher than Kevin Durant

Definition of point guard

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

So Draymond Green over Sir Charles Barkley on this list? Yeah ok. Shows how incredibly stupid voters are. Barkley a close 2nd to Duncan in best Power Forward of all time with Karl Malone jut behind him. Nowitzki is like 6th best Power Forward of all time at best.

I don't really like Charles Barkley because he was Karl Malone's rival.

Better than KD, only thing was he didn't win a ring

Ok sir Charles isn’t the greatest I admit but he was a one of the greatest, he was a complete player as well so he gets my vote

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

How do you put a guy like kwame brown over a legend like dirk?!? What?!?

Carried a mediocre team to the finals to defeat Lebron and D. Wade

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

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

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 a Jordan couldn't get to the NBA Finals until the 90s considering his Detroit Pistons handled him so well.

Simply awesome

Complete awesomness

Chris Paul Christopher Emmanuel Paul is an American professional basketball player for the Oklahoma City Thunder 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.

He isn't that good I would think he would be about 36 in rating on here

Never been champ, never been MVP, defensive player, nothing

Pretty good at handling. Terrible at everything else.

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.

He is such a diva. He wants everything to go his way and everyone to listen to him

Best current player in the NBA

Not nice like kobe

Good defender.

Derrick Rose

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

Were you guys doing marijuana when you made this? Two Wades and Two Roses

Derrick is hurt but he's coming back and is going to raise hell

He has a massive habit of getting the basket

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.

Cutest player to play the game them scrumpcious cheeks look nice on him anywhere, I just want him to fart in my face and give me pink eye

How is chris bosh higher than dwyane!? I mean I like chris bosh but dwayne wade was way more legendary

This is so disrespectful having wade below the likes of Lowry and Derozan

Jermaine O'Neal Jermaine Lee O'Neal is an American former professional basketball player. The 6 ft 11 in, 255 lb forward-center had a successful high school career and declared his eligibility for the 1996 NBA draft straight out of high school.

A good Damn center can dunk pass the ball and shoot. A "6'11" shooter so good.. He can attack the basket whenever or so what some people say he suck but they are wrong he is one of the best Basketball players.

How the Hell he made this list

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