LeBron, Dr J and Shaq all featured before we even reach number seven in the greatest ten NBA players of all time.
Today we’ll see who made numbers seven through four.
Tomorrow I will reveal my top three.
7. Wilt Chamberlain
Wilt ‘The Stilt’ Chamberlain will always be best known for being the first person to score 100 points in an organised basketball game.
Before Shaq, there was no more dominant force on-court than Wilt Chamberlain. Wilt didn’t have Shaq’s bulky body though – he was a tall, incredibly athletic and lean centre.
Statistic wise, Wilt would be an easy shoo-in for a top three position, the only reason he drops is because of his lack of championship credentials. Still, his accolades include seven scoring titles, eleven rebounding titles, four MVPs, two NBA championships and an NBA Finals MVP.
Statistically, Wilt has it over a lot of players. His career overall averages are only imaginable in this day and age – 30.1 points per game and 22.9 rebounds per game.
Wilt also became the only player to average 50 points in an entire NBA season, while averaging 27 rebounds from his first five years in the NBA.
There may never be a more prominent and dominant force.
6. Larry Bird
When people talk Caucasian NBA players, Larry ‘The Legend’ Bird is the King of them all.
Larry played his entire career with the Boston Celtics, amassing an impressing three NBA Titles, three MVP awards, two NBA Finals MVPs, and an incredible twelve All-Star appearances.
Larry Legend was never the most athletic player, but he was dominant in his own way. What he lacked in athleticism he made up with basketball IQ and deadly skills.
He had one of the purest shooting forms of all time, was a strong clutch performer, and a silky smooth passer. Among all his playing accolades, he also coached a team to the NBA Finals, and won an Executive of the Year award for his work with the Indian Pacers in 2012.
5. Kobe Bryant
Whatever you need in a player, Kobe will produce.
Coming to the Lakers (via trade from the Charlotte Hornets), Kobe Bryant had that cocky, competitive swag about him early. He showcased that in the annual slam dunk competition – which he won – when he walked off after every dunk with a somewhat cocky-arrogant smile on his face.
‘The Black Mamba’ can do it all. He will defend your best player, he will get up in your grill and post you up to strong efficiency, and doesn’t lack a hop in his step.
Boasting only one NBA MVP award, the argument can be made he is due many more. To go with his lone MVP Award, he has five NBA Titles, two NBA Finals MVP awards, sixteen All-Star appearances, and a record four All-Star game MVP awards.
The saying of “Kobe in the fourth” refers to his ice-cold ability under pressure. If there is anyone you want to take the last shot in an important game, it’s the Black Mamba.
4. Bill Russell
If the NBA Finals MVP award is named after you, you did something right.
The Bill Russell award is awarded to the best player of the NBA Finals series. This accolade is named after Russell because he won 11 NBA titles. Yup, 11 titles!
Known for his defensive prowess, he and Wilt Chamberlain had many memorable duels in their era. Defensively, he is the prototype centre – Bill is the only player on this list who averaged more rebounds than points in his entire career.
He also boasts five NBA MVP awards, was rebounding champion four times, and a twelve-time NBA All-Star.
Along with these accolades and his championship credentials, Russell was known for his leadership skills.