O’Neal was physically and statistically unlike any center the NBA has seen. Team: Baltimore/Capitol/Washington Bullets, Career Per-Game Stats: 1.1 steals and 0.6 blocks. 2 scorer in NBA history and averaged 25.0 PPG over his 19 seasons in the league. ESPN’s The Last Dance tried its best to encapsulate MJ’s stranglehold on the basketball world and still didn’t do it justice. Defensive Accolades: One-time All-Defensive First Team. Some of them are as follows: Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Joe Dumars, Larry Bird, Sidney Moncrief, Dennis Johnson, Bruce Bowen, Mark Eaton, David Robinson, Andre Iguodala, Kawhi Leonard, Draymond Green, Tony Allen, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Patrick Ewing, Michael Cooper. We see the multitude of accomplishments like NBA MVP, 5-time champion, two-time Finals MVP, 18-time All-Star, nine All-Defensive First Team selections, the now fourth leading scorer, and so on. That is all you need to know about me. That’s a pretty large gap for a two-time MVP. —ZO, When you talk about best PGs in NBA history, it would be impossible to not have Magic Johnson as No. The younger generations gets to enjoy the Chuckster in ways older NBA fans never imagined. Defensive Accolades: Two-time Defensive Player of the Year, Four-time All-Defensive First Team, One-time All-Defensive Second Team. Bruce Bowen was a 6'7 small forward who could stop anyone from scoring the basketball. 3 during his career. Defensively, you’re looking at a guy who’s a nine-time All-Defensive honoree and has led the league in steals six times. The NBA merged with the ABA in ‘76 because of the Doctor (there were a bunch of other great players too like George Gervin) and he continued to take another league by storm after winning two chips with the Nets in the ABA. Alvin Robertson is actually the only player in NBA history to record a quadruple-double with steals as one of the four categories. Career Per-Game Stats: 2.6 steals and 0.7 blocks. Others argued it should be about the numbers and that awards don’t always end up belonging to the most deserved individual. Norm Van Lier may be a bit forgotten about nowadays, but the man most famous for his contributions to the Chicago Bulls in the 1970s remain very impressive. Michael Jordan and the rest of the Chicago Bulls definitely wouldn't have even had a single three-peat if it wasn't for Scottie Pippen's defense. No one wanted to go up against this guy during his prime. Three-time First Team All-NBA. A two-time NBA champion, NBA MVP, 10-time All-Star, NBA Defensive Player of the Year, four-time First-Team All-NBA guy can't crack the top 20. No one really wanted to venture into the paint so long as The Big Aristotle was around. Team: Philadelphia/San Francisco Warriors, Philadelphia 76ers, Los Angeles Lakers, Career Per-Game Stats: Unknown steals and blocks. A year-by-year list of the Kia Defensive Player of the Year Award winners:. 12 in the center rankings and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's name is already coming up. You shouldn't even question his placement here. Chuck played bigger than he was and was way more athletic than he was perceived. YEAR PLAYER TEAM. Is there anything that Mr. Only two players in the history of the NBA have won four NBA Defensive Player of the Year awards and Ben Wallace is one of them. As each individual involved in this incredibly difficult and necessary endeavor lobbied for the player they thought deserved proper billing, we quickly realized it was going to be hellacious coming to a consensus. Oscar Robertson once asked. No other player can really say that in today's game. Draymond Green. On top of that, could he really have averaged as many as six blocks per game? —AD, The Shaq of point guards. For a look at the 60 greatest defenders of all-time… Position: Center. Enough said. A lot of people might bring up him being ranked over a guy, like two-time MVP Steve Nash. I have always had a passion for writing since I was about 8. He averaged 30 or more seven times, including a preposterous 40.6 per over 11 games in 1965. Despite going to nine NBA Finals with the Lakers, West won only one title in 1972. He won the Defensive Player of the Year Award in 1988. Hey, I was 8. Team: Orland Magic, Los Angeles Lakers, Miami Heat, Phoenix Suns, Cleveland Cavaliers, Boston Celtics, Career Per-Game Stats: 0.6 steals and 2.3 blocks, Defensive Accolades: Three-time All-Defensive Second Teams. Wilt Chamberlain is ranked higher on this list because his numbers are just too ridiculous, but he couldn’t beat Bill even with Jerry West and Elgin Baylor’s help. The Mailman delivered seven days a week on both ends of the court until the playoffs rolled around. Can you imagine just how stellar those numbers would have been if the NBA had kept track of them during the first five seasons of Hayes' career? With incredibly quick hands, Frazier would lure the player with the ball to sleep and then suddenly pounce to steal the ball away. For Malone, this is even more the case because of his two NBA Finals defeats at the hands of MJ and company. A two-time Defensive Player of the Year, the 7'4" Mark Eaton has two incredible records in NBA history. —AD. Perimeter players and forwards, on the other hand, also have defensive responsibilities, but they can't be deployed to protect the rim, for example. —AC, Boston’s had more than its fair share of Hall of Famers roll through the old Boston Garden, but nobody was as lethal a scorer or as clutch at the end of games like Larry Legend. Sometimes the best offense is a great defense. If only we were judging names here. All other big man bow down to The Captain. “Who do I think was the greatest? —ZF, While we can argue all day and night about the value of the triple-double in today’s position-less game, when Oscar Robertson became the first player in NBA history to average a triple-double over a season it was nothing short of monumental. A year-by-year list of the Kia Defensive Player of the Year Award winners: YEAR PLAYER TEAM, 2019-20 Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks (Voting), 2018-19 Rudy Gobert, Utah Jazz (Voting), 2017-18 Rudy Gobert, Utah Jazz (Voting), 2016-17 Draymond Green, Golden State Warriors (Voting), 2015-16 Kawhi Leonard, San Antonio Spurs (Voting), 2014-15 Kawhi Leonard, San Antonio Spurs, 2012-13 Marc Gasol, Memphis Grizzlies, 2011-12 Tyson Chandler, New York Knicks, 2007-08 Kevin Garnett, Boston Celtics, 2000-01 Dikembe Mutombo, Philadelphia 76ers, 1997-98 Dikembe Mutombo, Atlanta Hawks, 1996-97 Dikembe Mutombo, Atlanta Hawks, 1995-96 Gary Payton, Seattle SuperSonics, 1994-95 Dikembe Mutombo, Denver Nuggets, 1993-94 Hakeem Olajuwon, Houston Rockets, 1992-93 Hakeem Olajuwon, Houston Rockets, 1991-92 David Robinson, San Antonio Spurs, 1990-91 Dennis Rodman, Detroit Pistons, 1989-90 Dennis Rodman, Detroit Pistons, 1987-88 Michael Jordan, Chicago Bulls, 1986-87 Michael Cooper, Los Angeles Lakers, 1985-86 Alvin Robertson, San Antonio Spurs, 1983-84 Sidney Moncrief, Milwaukee Bucks, 1982-83 Sidney Moncrief, Milwaukee Bucks. But decisions had to be made before deadline. His defense was formidable against any opposing team. After all, how am I supposed to compare the tenacious perimeter defense of Gary Payton to the unmatched fundamentals of Tim Duncan in the low post? He is athletic, can hang with any point guard in the league, and is physical enough to handle centers in the NBA. Bird was always there to guard anyone on the court and wasn't afraid to put his body on the line and draw a charge at any time. The moments he delivered in South Beach will live in basketball infamy. From opening a school in his hometown to building his own media empire, LeBron has consistently done everything we've expected from him and then some. It would be interesting to see just how many blocks Wilt Chamberlain could have racked up if they had been tracked back then. NBA Privacy Center | This section of the list includes a lot of legendary big men from NBA history, but Dirk ultimately lands at No. With five championships, three MVPs, nine-time All-NBA First Team selections, Magic had one of the best careers in NBA history. He can retire today and waltz into the Hall of Fame.