When it comes to basketball, there are many fans of the game as well as many who aspire to play and win at the game. It is mistakenly assumed that height is the main criteria for winning at the game but this theory has been disproved by the greatest short basketball players in history.  Speaking of greats, here is a list of the greatest basketball players:

Hakeem Olajuwon

10. Hakeem Olajuwon

Hakeem Olajuwon is a Nigerian-American basketball player who played the NBA for teams like Toronto Raptors and Houston Rockets. He retired from the game in 2002 and played the game for a straight 18 years. This 7 footer played in the center position during his glorious basketball career. He helped his team the Houston Rockets win the NBA championships title in the years 1994 and 1995.

Shaquille O'Neal

9. Shaquille O’Neal

He was a former NBA player who played for various teams like Orlando Magic and the Boston Celtics.  Apart from his terrific height, he was also a heavy man weighing around 147 kg. Thus by using his height and weight he outshone many fellow basketball players. In addition to his basketball, Shaq also was a rapper, releasing four albums, with the first one declared a platinum hit.

tim duncan

8. Tim Duncan

He started his professional basketball career in the year 1997 and played for the team San Antonio Spurs and still is playing for them. Through the last 17 years, Duncan has played in the power forward or center positions for his team. Basketball pundits regard him as one of the best ever for his consistency and for his leadership qualities. Away from the basketball arena, Tim Duncan is very famous in the United States for his philanthropy.

wilt chamberlain

7. Wilt Chamberlain

Wilt Chamberlain was considered a very dominant player and was one of the best ever. He played for teams like Philadelphia 76ers and the LA Lakers in the NBA. He played in the center position for his teams and was widely known for his all round skills on the basketball court. Unfortunately, Chamberlain passed away in California in the year 1999 at the age of 63.

lebron james

6. LeBron James

Lebron James plays for Cleveland Cavaliers currently in the NBA as a small forward or at power forward positions. This 29 year old has also played for Miami Heat for four years from the years 2010 to 2014. He is considered one of the most popular and influential athletes in the United States. He played a crucial role in his team Miami Heat winning the NBA in the years 2012 and 2013.

larry bird

5. Larry Bird

Bird played all his basketball for the Boston Celtics from 1979 to 1992.  He played at small forward and power forward positions for his team. He helped his team win the NBA championships title 3 times in his career. He retired in the year 1992 due to a recurring back problem and is currently serving as the President of Indiana Pacers.

kareem abdul jabbar

4. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Kareem retired from the NBA in the year 1989 after playing for 20 seasons straight . He played for teams Milwaukee Bucks and later for the team LA Lakers. He was in 6 Championship teams in his illustrious career and played as Center. Basketball critics rate him as one of the greatest to have ever played the game.

magic johnson

3. Magic Johnson

Johnson played point forward for his team LA Lakers from the year 1979 to 1991 in the NBA. He was instrumental in his team winning the NBA championships 5 times between 1980 and 1988. He rather abruptly retired from the game in 19­91 after announcing that he had contracted HIV, only to return to the NBA 2 times later before finally retiring again in 1996.

bill russell

2. Bill Russell

He played center for his team, The Boston Celtics from 1956 to 1969 in the NBA Championships. During his 13-year career, he helped his team win the NBA title 11 times which is still a remarkable record. He is rated as one of the all time greats in the history of the game. He has the distinction of being the first African-American basketball player to achieve the status of a super star.

michael jordan

1. Michael Jordan

Michael Jordan is rated by most basketball critics as the greatest basketball player ever. He played in the NBA for teams Chicago Bulls and Washington Wizards for 15 seasons between 1984 and 2003. He was responsible for popularizing the game of basketball in the 80s and 90s. He helped his team Chicago Bulls win the NBA title for 6 times in his career.