Top 10 NBA Players of All-Time Ranking Formula

NBA Logo player Jerry West transparent PNG

Who do you think are the Top 10 NBA players of all time? If you ask a 100 basketball experts, you will get 100 different answers. NBA basketball and team logos are super popular now and a lot of people wonder who the best players of all time are. To settle this highly debatable and controversial question, we will use a ranking formula to get to the answer. The formula assigns points to an accolade that we think proves how good the player is. The longer a player plays in the NBA, the more points he will accumulate for great seasons. Here’s how it works.

Season MVP = 50 points
If you are the NBA season’s MVP, you are one of the league’s top 3 player that year. This says a lot about you as a player to have a season where you are the best individually. NBA season MVP is awarded to the best player on a winning tea so players with great stats but don’t translate into wins won’t be named MVP.

Finals MVP = 25 points
We know in NBA, one player can carry a team to the Finals and win. Being the Finals MVP means that the player has the capability to not only rise to the occasion on the game’s biggest stage, but also perform as the best player on the best team.

NBA Champion = 20 points
Because it’s still a team game, winning a championship doesn’t carry as much weight as being the MVP of the Finals or regular season. That’s why championship wins, while important, is not the best measurement of a player’s performance.

1st/2nd NBA Team = 15 points
If you made the 1st or 2nd All NBA Team, it means you were a top 10 player for that season. This is meaningful because to be in the conversation, you would have to be in this category.

1st/2nd NBA Def Team = 10 points
Players should get rewarded for being 2 way or all defensive players. Many defensive players have impacted winning so we will reward those great players here as well.

Scoring, Assist, Rebounding = 3 points each
Steals, Blocks = 1 point each
Finally, season leaders in these stats categories give players some opportunity to distinguish themselves from the rest of the group. They should get bonus points for being the best individuals in their category every season.

TOTAL PtsNBA championshipsNBA Finals MVPSeason MVP1st/2nd All NBA Team1st/2nd All NBA Defense TeamScoring ChampionAssist ChampionRebounding ChampionSteals ChampionBlocks Champion
Michael Jordan805665119100000
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar76762615620104
LeBron James*68544416611000
Bill Russell653110511100400
Tim Duncan620532131500000
Kobe Bryant521521131220000
Magic Johnson48553310004020
Wilt Chamberlain478214102701100
Larry Bird44032310300000
John Havlicek43081011800000

NBA All Time Greatest Players

  1. Michael Jordan
  2. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
  3. LeBron James
  4. Bill Russell
  5. Tim Duncan
  6. Kobe Bryant
  7. Magic Johnson
  8. Wilt Chamberlain
  9. Larry Bird
  10. John Havlicek

It’s no surprise that Michael Jordan comes out on top and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is second. LeBron James is third and the only active player on the list so he could move up the standings if he gets a couple more rings and Finals MVP. Bill Russell is 4th but should be higher since NBA Finals MVP did not get awarded until 1969. It’s no surprise that every player on this list has won NBA championships, named Finals MVP (except for Russell because the award wasn’t in place yet), and have been regular season MVPs. They were also on the 1st or 2nd All NBA Teams for more than 10 years.

Compared to ESPN’s top 10 list, our list is slightly different but almost all the players are on our list as well and we have Michael Jordan as #1 so we both agree there. The major difference is the order of the rest of the ranking as ours is based on career achievement numbers. You decide which one you prefer.