NBA The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time  

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
34.2k votes 3.9k voters 57.3k views 108 items

List Rules Only professional NBA basketball players who were not born in the US

Since the late '80s, the NBA has imported the best players from across the globe to play basketball in America. Initially these players made little impact on the game, but over time, some of the best players in the world are from abroad. Many European players have flourished in the NBA, with Dirk Nowitzki being the most prominent. Winning the league's MVP award in 2007, Nowitzki led the Dallas Mavericks to the 2011 NBA championship over the favored Miami Heat. The German forward is easily the most recognizable name to come from Europe, but he's certainly not the only star. Nowitzki's former teammate Steve Nash is another former MVP (in fact a two-time winner) who is from abroad. Born in South Africa and raised in Canada, Nash has been dazzling NBA arenas for nearly two decades.

Both Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili have been a vital cogs in the San Antonio Spurs system since joining the team. The France-born Parker has established himself as one of the best point guards in the game, while the Argentinian-born Ginobili is an integral player off the bench on a team that has won three championships since the duo has been in San Antonio.

While a lot of the players on this list aren't household names outside of the NBA community, they are the best current and former international players in the league. This is your chance to pick who is the best foreign NBA player of all time. 

list ordered by

1
1,400 461
Dirk Nowitzki is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
Germany

2
1,164 349
Hakeem Olajuwon is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
earlthegoose added Nigeria

3
844 443
Steve Nash is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
Canada, England

4
948 456
Manu Ginóbili is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
Argentina

5
743 418
Pau Gasol is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
Spain

6
741 453
Tony Parker is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
Belgium

7
495 196
Dikembe Mutombo is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
poroporo20 added Democratic Republic of the Congo

8
544 271
Patrick Ewing is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
earlthegoose added Jamaica

9
567 278
Yao Ming is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
wiabux added China

10
457 228
Dražen Petrović is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
wiabux added Croatia

11
463 293
Marc Gasol is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
Spain

12
451 227
Peja Stojaković is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
wiabux added Serbia

13
381 226
Toni Kukoč is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
wiabux added Croatia

14
379 228
Vlade Divac is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
Serbian

15
388 170
Arvydas Sabonis is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
wiabux added Lithuania

16
607 72
Giannis Antetokounmpo is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
NikosPanou added Greece

17
316 226
Al Horford is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
Dominican Republic

18
303 265
Serge Ibaka is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
Congo

19
314 223
Goran Dragić is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
Slovenia

20
300 294
Ricky Rubio is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
Spain

21
218 157
Detlef Schrempf is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
Davy040 added Germany

22
250 221
Andrei Kirilenko is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time

23
215 242
Luol Deng is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
United Kingdom

24
209 217
Andrew Bogut is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
Australia

25
192 211
Boris Diaw is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
France

26
199 226
Nenê is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
Brazil

27
180 215
Nicolas Batum is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
France

28
293 46
Kristaps Porzingis is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
kartivim2 added Kristaps Porzingis Latvia

29
222 90
Andrew Wiggins is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
marcosiahaan1 added Canada

30
198 191
Luis Scola is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
Argentina

31
190 47
Ranker Video
zepolian1 added Nikola Jokić Serbian

32
171 103
Manute Bol is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
Davy040 added Sudan

33
142 200
Marcin Gortat is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
Poland

34
168 130
Žydrūnas Ilgauskas is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
wiabux added Lithuania

35
145 197
José Calderón is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time

36
147 165
Nikola Vučević is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
Switzerland

37
163 123
Jonas Valančiūnas is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
Lithuania

38
181 147
Danilo Gallinari is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time

39
135 58
Steven Adams is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
BOULTY added New Zealand

40
156 105
Patty Mills is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
KelvinSalvador added Australia

41
164 154
Ersan İlyasova is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time

42
132 158
Leandro Barbosa is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time

43
155 200
Nikola Pekovic is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time

44
157 102
Hedo Türkoğlu is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time

45
146 149
Ranker Video

46
100 98
Rik Smits is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
Davy040 added Netherlands

47
90 86
Šarūnas Marčiulionis is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
gerard-ocón added Lithuania

48
102 121
Mehmet Okur is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
poroporo20 added Turkey

49
107 104
Tristan Thompson is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time
Davy040 added Canada

50
114 174
Anderson Varejão is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time