Top 10 Best Basketball Players
Well, the word basketball does not require any introduction. Basketball is one of the most popular sports in the world. The word itself holds entirely another world in which two teams, each consisting of five players, move across the court scoring points for their teams, trying to do only one simple thing i.e. having fun. It is a very interesting and enjoyable game. One can play hours with that ball on the court and never get bored of it.
This game was first played in 1891. Since then, the game has given rise to such marvelous and spectacular players who have created history with their passion and remarkable skills. These are some fine men whom the world will always remember as, LEGENDS!!!!!
10. Oscar Robertson
Oscar Palmer Robertson was born on 24th November 1938. Robertson is nicknamed “The Big O“. He is an American retired National Basketball Association player. He used to play for the Cincinnati Royals and Milwaukee Bucks. He played as a point guard.
The Big O was a 12-time All-Star, an 11-time member of the All-NBA Team, and one-time winner of the MVP award in 14 professional seasons. He is the only player in NBA history to average a triple-double for a season. He played a vital role on the team as he helped greatly in bringing the Bucks their only NBA title in the 1970–71 NBA season.
One can get the idea of Robertson’s skills by looking at his points only from 1961-62: 30.8 points, 12.5 rebounds, and 11.4 assists per game an average of a triple-double for an entire season. Not even Magic Johnson or Larry Bird could match those numbers.
During 14 years which he spent at NBA, with the Cincinnati Royals and the Milwaukee Bucks, Robertson became the top-scoring guard of all time, amassing 26,710 points. Among all players, only Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Karl Malone, Wilt Chamberlain, Michael Jordan, Moses Malone, Elvin Hayes, and Hakeem Olajuwon have scored more.
9. Shaquille O’Neal
Shaquille Rashaun O’Neal was born on 6th March 1972. He is nicknamed Shaq. Shaquille is an American retired professional basketball player. These days, he works as an analyst on the television program Inside the NBA. Being 7 ft. 1 in (2.16 m) tall and weighing 325 pounds (147 kg), he was one of the heaviest players ever to play in the NBA. O’Neal was a member of the U.S. Olympic basketball team that won the gold medal in 1996, the same year he joined the Los Angeles Lakers, where he teamed with blossoming superstar Kobe Bryant.
O’Neal played for six teams throughout his 19-year NBA career. He played for Orlando Magic, Los Angeles Lakers, Miami Heat, Phoenix Suns, Cleveland Cavaliers and the Boston Celtics.
“Shaq” won four NBA Championships. He was named to 15 All-Star Games. With an average of 23.7 points and 10.9 rebounds per game, he was considered the best center in basketball history.
Apart from being an amazing basketball player, he is a successful actor, rapper and reality show personality.
8. Bill Russell
William Felton “Bill” Russell was born on 12th February 1934. He was an American professional basketball player. Russell played center for the Boston Celtics of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He played from 1956 to 1969.
Bill is a five-time NBA Most Valuable Player and a twelve-time All-Star. He was the centerpiece of the Celtics dynasty. He helped the Celtics win eleven NBA championships during his thirteen-year career. Along with Henri Richard of the National Hockey League’s, Russell holds the record for the most championships won by an athlete in a North American sports league. At the 1956 Summer Olympics, Bill as a captain won a gold medal for the U.S. national basketball team.
Bill Russell’s shot-blocking and man-to-man defensive skills were major reasons for the Celtics’ success. Bill remains second all-time in both total rebounds and rebounds per game. He is one of just two NBA players (the other being Wilt Chamberlain) to have grabbed more than 50 rebounds in a game.
He has been a five-time NBA MVP and eleven-time NBA champion. He has been named to NBA’s 25th, 35th and 50th-anniversary teams.
7. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar born as Ferdinand Lewis Alcindor, Jr. on 16th April 1947, is an American retired professional basketball player. He played a total of 20 seasons in the National Basketball Association (NBA) for the Milwaukee Bucks and Los Angeles Lakers. He played as a center.
The time Kareem Abdul-Jabbar left the game in 1989; no NBA player had ever scored more points, blocked more shots, won more MVP awards, played in more All-Star Games, or even logged more seasons. He has made some extremely awesome achievements during his career e.g. Rookie of the Year, the member of six NBA championship teams, six-time NBA MVP, two-time NBA Finals MVP, 19-time All-Star, two-time scoring champ, and a member of the NBA 35th and 50th Anniversary All-Time Teams.
Players 10 years younger than him couldn’t keep up with Abdul-Jabbar’s pace. This was because of his strict physical fitness regimen which was years ahead of its time in the NBA. An all-around player, Abdul-Jabbar brought grace, agility, and versatility to the center position. He truly was a legendary player.
6. Wilt Chamberlain
Wilton Norman “Wilt” Chamberlain was born on 21stAugust, 1936 and died on 12thOctober, 1999. He was an American basketball player. during his total basketball career, he played for the Philadelphia/San Francisco Warriors, the Philadelphia 76ers, and the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He had an immense height of 7 feet 1 inch and he weighed 250 pounds. After that, his weight increased to 275 and finally to over 300 pounds with the Lakers. He played the center position and is considered to be one of the greatest and most dominant players in NBA history.
He used to be a dominant player in the court. He was like an unstoppable force, and not just any force, he was an awesome offensive force the game has ever seen.
He accomplished some massive records. He was the only NBA player to score 4,000 points in a season. He set NBA single-game records for most points (100), most consecutive field goals (18) and most rebounds (55). His most mind-boggling stat was the 50.4 points per game which he averaged during the 1961-62 season. If you think that is big, just imagine him with an average of 48.5 minutes per game which he averaged that same year.
5. Larry Bird
Larry Joe Bird was born on 7th December 1956. He was an American professional basketball player who played for the Boston Celtics of the National Basketball Association (NBA). Since retiring as a player, he has been a mainstay in the Indiana Pacers organization, currently serving as team president. He was drafted into the NBA sixth overall by the Boston Celtics in 1978. He became one of the NBA’s most formidable frontcourts.
The bird was a 12-time NBA All-Star and was even named the league’s Most Valuable Player (MVP) three consecutive times. During his entire career, he played for Boston, winning three NBA championships and two NBA Finals MVP awards.
He was a member of the 1992 United States men’s Olympic basketball team which is popularly called “The Dream Team”. This team won the gold medal at the 1992 Summer Olympics. The bird was voted to the NBA’s 50th Anniversary All-Time Team in 1996 and inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1998.
4. LeBron Raymone James
LeBron Raymone James was born on 30th December 1984. He is an American professional basketball player who played for the Cleveland Cavaliers of the National Basketball Association.
He made great achievements throughout his basketball career. He won three NBA championships, four NBA Most Valuable Player Awards, three NBA Finals MVP Awards, two Olympic gold medals in 2008 and 2012, an NBA scoring title in 2008, and the NBA Rookie of the Year Award in 2004. He has also been selected to 12 NBA All-Star teams, 12 All-NBA teams, and six All-Defensive teams. He is also Cavaliers’ all-time leading scorer.
In 2013, he led Miami on a 27-game winning streak, which was the third-longest in league history. After his final season with the Heat, James opted out of his contract and re-joined the Cavaliers. Under his leadership, Cleveland advanced to two consecutive Finals against the Golden State Warriors, winning the championship in 2016.
3. Kobe Bryant
Kobe Bean Bryant was born on 23rd August 1978. He is an American retired professional basketball player. During his 20-year career, he played with the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He won five NBA championships with the Lakers right off his start with NBA after high school.
Bryant is an 18-time All-Star, the 15-time member of the All-NBA Team, and the 12-time member of the All-Defensive team. He ranks third on both the league’s all-time regular season scoring and all-time postseason scoring lists.
He holds the NBA record for the most seasons playing with one franchise for an entire career. He is nicknamed “The Black Mamba!”
At the age of 34 years and 104 days, Bryant became the youngest player in league history to reach 30,000 career points. After his second year in the league, Bryant was chosen to start every All-Star Game until his retirement which helped him make a record of 18 consecutive appearances. His four All-Star MVP Awards are tied for the most in NBA history. He won gold medals as a member of the U.S. national team at the 2008 and 2012 Summer Olympics.
2. Magic Johnson
Earvin “Magic” Johnson Jr. was born on 14th August 1959. He was an American professional basketball player who played point guard for the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association (NBA) for a total of 13 seasons.
Johnson made great achievements during his career which include three NBA MVP Awards, nine NBA Finals appearances, twelve All-Star games, and ten All-NBA First and Second Team nominations.
Johnson was a member of the 1992 United States Men’s Olympic basketball team, known as “The Dream Team”. This team won the Olympic gold medal in 1992. After leaving the NBA in 1992, Johnson formed the Magic Johnson All-Stars. It was a barnstorming team that traveled around the world playing exhibition games. Johnson was honored as one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History in 1996.
1. Michael Jordan
Michael Jeffrey Jordan was born on 17th February 1963. He also popularly known by his initials, MJ. Jordan is an American retired professional basketball player.
Jordan played 15 seasons in the National Basketball Association (NBA) for the Chicago Bulls and Washington Wizards. Jordan was one of the most effectively marketed athletes of his generation. In the 1980s and 1990s, he played a vital role in popularizing the NBA around the world.
Michael is a five-time MVP and 10-time scoring champion and had an average of 30.1 points and 6.2 rebounds throughout his career. Jordan is considered one of the best defensive players in basketball. In fact, by many, he is considered the best basketball player in the entire history of basketball.
He is also a businessman and principal owner and chairman of the Charlotte Hornets. He has more endorsement deals with different companies than any other player. These companies include Coca-Cola, Gatorade, Hanes, and Wheaties, all of which are humongous brands. He even has his own successful brand of shoes with Nike, the Air Jordan.
His skills, abilities, and spectacular gameplay have truly paid him off. Well, this explains why he is the richest basketball player in the world and above all, he is the first billionaire athlete in NBA history. YES, he is a billionaire. Come, people, he is Michael Jordan after all.
He is, according to most people the best basketball player in the history of basketball. He is a true legend that no one will forget. He made his mark in the history and without any exaggeration, that mark won’t fade for a long long time.