basketball The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time  

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List Rules Only players drafted #1 overall in the NBA Draft

Having the #1 overall pick in the NBA Draft could set your team up for success for more than a decade. However, not all #1 picks are created equal (as this list shows) and teams can regret passing up on superstars such as Michael Jordan or Kevin Durant. We've compiled a list of all the #1 overall draft picks in NBA Draft history to see who is voted the best top overall first round pick of all time.
list ordered by

1
1,972 594
LeBron James is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
LeBron James Small forward, Power forward, Point forward - 2003 Cleveland Cavaliers (St. Vincent-St. Mary HS)

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2
1,578 447
Magic Johnson is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Magic Johnson Point guard, Power forward - 1979 Los Angeles Lakers (Michigan State)

3
1,496 392
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Center - 1968 Milwaukee Bucks (UCLA)

4
1,447 376
Shaquille O'Neal is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Shaquille O'Neal Center - 1992 Orlando Magic (LSU)

5
1,444 376
Tim Duncan is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Tim Duncan Power forward, Center - 1997 San Antonio Spurs (Wake Forest)

6
1,158 219
Hakeem Olajuwon is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Hakeem Olajuwon Center - 1984 Houston Rockets (Houston)

7
1,175 358
Allen Iverson is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Allen Iverson Point guard, Shooting guard - 1996 Philadelphia 76ers (Georgetown)

8
909 241
Oscar Robertson is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Oscar Robertson Point guard, Shooting guard - 1960 Cincinnati Royals (Cincinnati)

9
835 240
David Robinson is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
David Robinson Center - 1987 San Antonio Spurs (Navy)

10
722 289
Patrick Ewing is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Patrick Ewing Center - 1985 New York Knicks (Georgetown)

11
497 301
Elgin Baylor is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Elgin Baylor Small forward - 1958 Minneapolis Lakers (Seattle)

12
696 387
Anthony Davis is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Anthony Davis Power forward, Center - 2012 New Orleans Hornets (Kentucky)

13
461 323
James Worthy is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
James Worthy Small forward - 1982 Los Angeles Lakers (North Carolina)

14
685 433
Kyrie Irving is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Kyrie Irving Point guard - 2011 Cleveland Cavaliers (Duke)

15
527 384
Yao Ming is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Yao Ming Center - 2002 Houston Rockets (China)

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16
482 292
Chris Webber is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Chris Webber Power forward, Center - 1993 Golden State Warriors (Michigan)

17
568 293
John Wall is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
John Wall Point guard - 2010 Washington Wizards (Kentucky)

18
424 479
Blake Griffin is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Blake Griffin Power forward - 2009 Los Angeles Clippers (Oklahoma)

19
371 299
Bill Walton is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Bill Walton Center - 1974 Portland Trail Blazers (UCLA)

20
511 423
Derrick Rose is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Derrick Rose Point guard - 2008 Chicago Bulls (Memphis)

21
538 260
Karl-Anthony Towns is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Karl-Anthony Towns 2015 Minnesota Timberwolves (Kentucky)

22
355 453
Dwight Howard is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Dwight Howard Power forward, Center - 2004 Orlando Magic (Southwest Atlanta Christian Academy)

23
418 340
Andrew Wiggins is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Andrew Wiggins 2014 Cleveland Cavaliers (Kansas)

24
238 269
Elvin Hayes is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Elvin Hayes Power forward, Center - 1968 San Diego Rockets (Houston)

25
258 257
Larry Johnson is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Larry Johnson Power forward - 1991 Charlotte Hornets (UNLV)

26
152 272
Ralph Sampson is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Ralph Sampson Center - 1983 Houston Rockets (Virginia)

27
127 251
Bob Lanier is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Bob Lanier Center - 1970 Detroit Pistons (St. Bonaventure)

28
144 223
David Thompson is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
David Thompson 1975 Atlanta Hawks (North Carolina State)

29
144 270
Glenn Robinson is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Glenn Robinson Small forward - 1994 Milwaukee Bucks (Purdue)

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30
123 262
Elton Brand is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Elton Brand Power forward - 1999 Chicago Bulls (Duke)

31
96 248
Brad Daugherty is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Brad Daugherty Center - 1986 Cleveland Cavaliers (North Carolina)

32
109 235
Mark Aguirre is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Mark Aguirre Small forward - 1981 Dallas Mavericks (DePaul)

33
87 286
Danny Manning is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Danny Manning Power forward - 1988 Los Angeles Clippers (Kansas)

34
64 232
Walt Bellamy is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Walt Bellamy Power forward, Center - 1961 Chicago Packers (Indiana)

35
139 381
Andrew Bogut is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Andrew Bogut Center - 2006 Milwaukee Bucks (Utah)

36
94 228
Derrick Coleman is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Derrick Coleman Small forward, Power forward, Center - 1990 New Jersey Nets (Syracuse)

37
77 235
Doug Collins is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Doug Collins Shooting guard, Small forward - 1973 Philadelphia 76ers (Illinois State)

38
117 262
Kenyon Martin is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Kenyon Martin Power forward - 2000 New Jersey Nets (Cincinnati)

39
72 222
Mychal Thompson is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Mychal Thompson Power forward, Center - 1978 Portland Trail Blazers (Minnesota)

40
50 224
Austin Carr is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Austin Carr 1971 Cleveland Cavaliers (Notre Dame)

41
40 216
Cazzie Russell is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Cazzie Russell Small forward - 1966 New York Knicks (Michigan)

42
47 242
Joe Smith is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Joe Smith Power forward, Center - 1995 Golden State Warriors (Maryland)

43
67 197
John Lucas is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
John Lucas 1976 Houston Rockets (Maryland)

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44
30 206
Jimmy Walker is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Jimmy Walker Shooting guard - 1967 Detroit Pistons (Providence)

45
57 340
Andrea Bargnani is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Andrea Bargnani Small forward, Power forward, Center - 2006 Toronto Raptors (Italy)

46
96 424
Greg Oden is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Greg Oden Center - 2007 Portland Trail Blazers (Ohio State)

47
33 194
Joe Barry Carroll is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Joe Barry Carroll Center - 1980 Golden State Warriors (Purdue)

48
34 206
Pervis Ellison is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Pervis Ellison Power forward, Center - 1989 Sacramento Kings (Louisville)

49
33 202
Rod Hundley is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Rod Hundley 1957 Cincinnati Royals (West Virginia)

50
62 416
Anthony Bennett is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Anthony Bennett Guard, Power forward - 2013 Cleveland Cavaliers (UNLV)