Sports
27.0k voters

The Best NBA Players With No Championship Rings

Updated November 15, 2020 224.7k votes 27.0k voters 327.5k views161 items

List RulesVote up the top players who never quite reached the NBA mountaintop.

List of the greatest NBA basketball players of all time who never won a championship ring. Though winning a championship is the ultimate goal of any team in any league, often circumstances conspire to keep even the most elite athletes from actually making it to that pinnacle of achievement. Thus, it has become a known and accepted truth that there must be other ways to measure the greatness of a basketball icon other than counting up their actual championship record. A number of lesser players whose names have been all but forgotten to history have collected more rings than legends like Charles Barkley, Patrick Ewing, and Reggie Miller.

But what other measurements can be used to evaluate the dominance of a given player, if not by the rings on their fingers? Perhaps participation in NBA All Star competitions? Their central importance to a particular team or city? It'd be hard to argue against the greatness of six-time NBA All Star Shawn Kemp, nor to deny his integral position on the '90s Seattle Sonics. Yet in may ways because of the dominance of Michael Jordan's Bulls dynasty, Kemp was never part of a championship team. 

Below, vote for your favorite players who never managed to clinch a championship victory. And if you think a key player has been left off the list, add them by making your own re-ranked version. Thanks to your votes, we'll create a list of the best NBA players without a ring.

Photo:
...more
  • Muggsy Bogues26
    651
    465

    Muggsy Bogues

    Point guard

    Age55

    BirthplaceBaltimore, Maryland, United States of America

    TeamsWashington Wizards, Charlotte Hornets, Toronto Raptors, Golden State Warriors

    Tyrone Curtis "Muggsy" Bogues (born January 9, 1965) is a retired American basketball player....  more

    More Muggsy Bogues 

    #18 of 27 The Best '90s Point Guards#3 of 66 The Best Charlotte Hornets Players of All Time, Ranked

  • Shawn Kemp27
    2,201
    1,824

    Shawn Kemp

    Power forward

    Age51

    BirthplaceElkhart, Indiana

    TeamsPortland Trail Blazers, Orlando Magic, Cleveland Cavaliers, Seattle Supersonics

    1 NBA Finals appearance (1996)

    Shawn Travis Kemp (born November 26, 1969) is an American retired professional basketball...  more

    More Shawn Kemp 

    #14 of 168 The Greatest Power Forwards in NBA History#33 of 96 The Best Rebounders in NBA History

  • Grant Hill28
    2,216
    1,879

    Grant Hill

    Small forward

    Age47

    BirthplaceDallas, Texas, United States of America

    Number33

    TeamsPhoenix Suns, Orlando Magic, Detroit Pistons

    Grant Henry Hill (born October 5, 1972) is a former American professional basketball player...  more

    More Grant Hill 

    #43 of 71 Mormon Politicians#2 of 76 The Greatest Duke Basketball Players of All Time

  • John Wall29
    335
    230

    John Wall

    Point guard

    Age30

    BirthplaceRaleigh, North Carolina

    Number2

    TeamsWashington Wizards

    Johnathan Hildred Wall Jr. (born September 6, 1990) is an American professional basketball...  more

    More John Wall 

    #2 of 141 The Greatest Kentucky Basketball Players of All Time#22 of 76 The Best Point Guards Currently in the NBA

  • Amar'e Stoudemire30
    743
    599

    Amar'e Stoudemire

    Power forward, Center

    Age38

    BirthplaceLake Wales, Florida, United States of America

    Number1

    TeamsPhoenix Suns

    Amar'e Carsares Stoudemire (Hebrew: אמארה סטודמאייר‎; ; born November 16, 1982) is an ...  more

    More Amar'e Stoudemire 

    #41 of 71 The Greatest Jewish Athletes Of All Time#32 of 69 All NBA Rookie Of The Year Award Winners, Ranked

  • Jamal Crawford31
    362
    249

    Jamal Crawford

    Point guard, Shooting guard

    Age40

    BirthplaceSeattle, Washington, United States of America

    Number11

    TeamsPhoenix Suns

    Aaron Jamal Crawford (born March 20, 1980) is an American professional basketball player who ...  more

    More Jamal Crawford 

    #8 of 46 The Greatest Michigan Basketball Players of All Time#19 of 73 The Greatest Chicago Bulls of All Time

  • Sidney Moncrief32
    390
    297

    Sidney Moncrief

    Shooting guard

    Age62

    BirthplaceLittle Rock, Arkansas

    TeamsAtlanta Hawks, Milwaukee Bucks

    Sidney Alvin Moncrief (born September 21, 1957) is an American retired professional basketball...  more

    More Sidney Moncrief 

    #1 of 33 The Greatest Arkansas Basketball Players of All Time#472 of 1,427 The Best Athletes Of All Time

  • Spud Webb33
    640
    517

    Spud Webb

    Point guard

    Age57

    BirthplaceDallas, Texas

    TeamsAtlanta Hawks, Sacramento Kings, Orlando Magic, Minnesota Timberwolves

    Anthony Jerome "Spud" Webb (born July 13, 1963) is an American retired professional basketball...  more

    More Spud Webb 

    #3 of 24 The Shortest NBA Players of All Time, Ranked#11 of 20 The Best 80s NBA Point Guards

  • Damian Lillard34
    1,002
    848

    Damian Lillard

    Point guard

    Age30

    BirthplaceOakland, California

    Number0

    TeamsPortland Trail Blazers

    Damian Lamonte Ollie Lillard is an American professional basketball player for the Portland...  more

    More Damian Lillard 

    #468 of 583 The Greatest Entertainers of All Time#8 of 150 The Greatest Point Guards in NBA History

  • DeMar DeRozan35
    728
    595

    DeMar DeRozan

    Shooting guard

    Age31

    BirthplaceCompton, California

    Number10

    TeamsSan Antonio Spurs

    DeMar Darnell DeRozan (born August 7, 1989) is an American professional basketball player for...  more

    More DeMar DeRozan 

    #170 of 199 The All-Around Best Athletes of 2018#90 of 96 The All-Around Best Athletes of 2019

  • Carmelo Anthony36
    2,479
    2,234

    Carmelo Anthony

    Small forward, Forward

    Age36

    BirthplaceRed Hook, New York City, New York, United States of America

    Number7

    TeamsPortland Trail Blazers

    Carmelo Kyam Anthony (born May 29, 1984) is an American professional basketball player who is...  more

    More Carmelo Anthony 

    #8 of 75 The Biggest Crybabies in Basketball#57 of 74 The Things Everyone (Including You) Googled in 2017

  • David Thompson37
    310
    234

    David Thompson

    Small forward, Shooting guard

    Age65

    BirthplaceShelby, North Carolina, United States of America

    Number33

    TeamsDenver Nuggets, Seattle Supersonics

    David O'Neil Thompson (born July 13, 1954) is an American retired professional basketball...  more

    More David Thompson 

    #1 of 31 The Best NC State Basketball Players Ever#13 of 29 The Greatest Small Forwards of the 1980s

  • Charles Oakley38
    397
    308

    Charles Oakley

    Power forward, Center

    Age57

    BirthplaceCleveland, Ohio, United States of America

    TeamsWashington Wizards, Houston Rockets, Toronto Raptors, New York Knicks, Chicago Bulls

    1 NBA Finals appearance (1994)

    Charles Oakley (born December 18, 1963) is an American former professional basketball player....  more

    More Charles Oakley 

    #12 of 25 The Best Power Forwards of the 80s#23 of 24 The Best NCAA Power Forwards of the 80s

  • Baron Davis39
    273
    203

    Baron Davis

    Point guard

    Age41

    BirthplaceSanta Monica, California, United States of America

    TeamsCharlotte Hornets, New Orleans Pelicans, Golden State Warriors

    Baron Walter Louis Davis (born April 13, 1979) is an American former professional basketball...  more

    More Baron Davis 

    #9 of 42 The Greatest UCLA Basketball Players of All Time#10 of 28 The Best NCAA Point Guards of the '90s

  • Mark Price40
    599
    505

    Mark Price

    Point guard

    Age56

    BirthplaceBartlesville, Oklahoma, United States of America

    TeamsWashington Wizards, Orlando Magic, Cleveland Cavaliers, Golden State Warriors

    William Mark Price (born February 15, 1964) is an American former basketball player and coach....  more

    More Mark Price 

    #1 of 27 The Greatest Georgia Tech Basketball Players of All Time#2 of 24 The Best NCAA Point Guards of the '80s

  • Nate Thurmond41
    608
    539

    Nate Thurmond

    Power forward, Center

    Age78

    BirthplaceAkron, Ohio, United States of America

    TeamsCleveland Cavaliers, Golden State Warriors, San Francisco Warriors, Chicago Bulls

    2 NBA Finals appearances (1964, 1967)

    Nathaniel Thurmond (July 25, 1941 – July 16, 2016) was an American basketball player who spent...  more

    More Nate Thurmond 

    #3 of 22 The Best NBA Centers of the 1960s#18 of 23 The Best Power Forwards of the '70s

  • John Starks42
    345
    275

    John Starks

    Shooting guard

    Age54

    BirthplaceTulsa, Oklahoma, United States of America

    TeamsUtah Jazz, Golden State Warriors, New York Knicks, Chicago Bulls

    1 NBA Finals appearance (1994)

    John Levell Starks (born August 10, 1965) is an American retired professional basketball...  more

    More John Starks 

    #19 of 32 The Best NBA Shooting Guards of the 90s#45 of 126 The Best NBA Buys for the Money

  • Larry Johnson43
    556
    489

    Larry Johnson

    Power forward

    Age50

    BirthplaceTyler, Texas, United States of America

    TeamsCharlotte Hornets, New York Knicks

    1 NBA Finals appearance (1999)

    Lawrence Demetric Johnson (born March 14, 1969) is an American retired basketball player who...  more

    More Larry Johnson 

    #100 of 256 The Top NBA Players Of All Time#27 of 55 The Best No. 1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time, Ranked

  • Tim Hardaway44
    1,161
    1,100

    Tim Hardaway

    Point guard

    Age54

    BirthplaceChicago, Illinois, United States of America

    TeamsIndiana Pacers, Golden State Warriors, Miami Heat, Denver Nuggets

    Timothy Duane Hardaway Sr. (born September 1, 1966) is an American retired basketball player....  more

    More Tim Hardaway 

    #239 of 329 The Most Obnoxious Athletes#9 of 56 People Who Should Be in the Basketball Hall of Fame

  • Arvydas Sabonis45
    517
    449

    Age56

    BirthplaceKaunas, Lithuania

    TeamsPortland Trail Blazers

    Arvydas Romas Sabonis (Lithuanian pronunciation: ​[ˈaːrviːdaːs ˈsaːboːnʲɪs]; born December 19,...  more

    More Arvydas Sabonis 

    #6 of 130 The Best European NBA Players of All Time#16 of 23 The Best NBA Centers of the 1980s

  • Alex English46
    884
    833

    Alex English

    Small forward

    Age66

    BirthplaceColumbia, South Carolina, United States of America

    TeamsDallas Mavericks, Indiana Pacers, Milwaukee Bucks, Denver Nuggets

    Alexander English (born January 5, 1954) is an American retired basketball player. He was most...  more

    More Alex English 

    #15 of 53 The Best NBA Players Who Played Overseas#10 of 24 The Best Small Forwards of the 70s

  • Paul George47
    943
    882

    Paul George

    Shooting guard, Small forward

    Age30

    BirthplacePalmdale, California

    Number24

    TeamsLos Angeles Clippers

    Paul Cliftonantho George (born May 2, 1990) is an American professional basketball player for...  more

    More Paul George 

    #18 of 54 The Most Hated Active NBA Players#23 of 294 The Top 100+ NBA Players Today

  • Vlade Divac48
    279
    215

    Age52

    BirthplacePrijepolje, Serbia

    TeamsSacramento Kings, Charlotte Hornets, Los Angeles Lakers

    Vlade Divac (Serbian Cyrillic: Владе Дивац, pronounced [ʋlǎːde dǐːʋats]; born February 3,...  more

    More Vlade Divac 

    #40 of 232 The Best White Players in NBA History#37 of 165 The Greatest NBA Centers of All Time

  • Al Horford49
    231
    172

    Age34

    BirthplacePuerto Plata, Dominican Republic

    Number42

    TeamsPhiladelphia 76ers

    Alfred Joel Horford Reynoso (born June 3, 1986) is a Dominican professional basketball player...  more

    More Al Horford 

    #68 of 78 The Best Philadelphia 76ers of All Time#27 of 133 The Best Boston Celtics of All Time

  • Victor Oladipo50
    199
    113

    Victor Oladipo

    Shooting guard

    Age28

    BirthplaceUpper Marlboro, Maryland

    Number4

    TeamsHouston Rockets

    Kehinde Babatunde Victor Oladipo (born May 4, 1992) is an American professional basketball...  more

    More Victor Oladipo 

    #14 of 102 The Most Likable Players In The NBA Today#18 of 175 The Greatest Shooting Guards in NBA History