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The Best NBA Players With No Championship Rings

Updated November 15, 2020 217.4k votes 25.4k voters 323.3k 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.

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  • 1
    Allen Iverson
    8,121
    3,220

    Allen Iverson

    Point guard, Shooting guard

    Age44

    BirthplaceHampton, Virginia, United States of America

    TeamsPhiladelphia 76ers, Denver Nuggets

    1 NBA Finals appearance (2001)

  • 2
    Charles Barkley
    7,768
    3,460

    Charles Barkley

    Small forward, Power forward

    Age56

    BirthplaceLeeds, Alabama, United States of America

    TeamsPhoenix Suns, Philadelphia 76ers, Houston Rockets

    1 NBA Finals appearance (1993)

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  • 3
    John Stockton
    7,385
    3,226

    John Stockton

    Point guard

    Age57

    BirthplaceSpokane, Washington

    TeamsUtah Jazz

    2 NBA Finals appearances (1997, 1998)

  • 4
    Karl Malone
    6,663
    3,033

    Karl Malone

    Power forward

    Age56

    BirthplaceSummerfield, Louisiana, United States of America

    TeamsUtah Jazz, Los Angeles Lakers

    3 NBA Finals appearances (1997, 1998, 2004)

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  • 5
    Steve Nash
    6,235
    2,963

    Steve Nash

    Point guard

    Age45

    BirthplaceJohannesburg, South Africa

    Number10

    TeamsDallas Mavericks, Phoenix Suns

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  • 6
    Patrick Ewing
    5,261
    2,734

    Age57

    BirthplaceKingston, Jamaica

    TeamsOrlando Magic, Seattle Supersonics, New York Knicks

    2 NBA Finals appearances (1994, 1999)

  • 7
    Reggie Miller
    5,360
    2,768

    Reggie Miller

    Shooting guard

    Age54

    BirthplaceRiverside, California, United States of America

    TeamsIndiana Pacers

    1 NBA Finals appearance (2000)

  • 8
    Tracy McGrady
    4,471
    2,343

    Tracy McGrady

    Shooting guard, Small forward

    Age40

    BirthplaceUSA, Florida, Bartow

    TeamsHouston Rockets, Orlando Magic, Toronto Raptors

    1 NBA Finals appearance (2013)

  • 9
    Dominique Wilkins
    4,175
    2,435

    Dominique Wilkins

    Small forward

    Age59

    BirthplaceParis, France

    TeamsAtlanta Hawks, Boston Celtics, Orlando Magic, Los Angeles Clippers

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  • 10
    Dražen Petrović
    2,147
    836

    Dražen Petrović

    Shooting guard

    AgeDec. at 29 (1964-1993)

    BirthplaceŠibenik, Croatia

    TeamsPortland Trail Blazers, Brooklyn Nets

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  • 11
    Vince Carter
    4,394
    2,457

    Vince Carter

    Shooting guard, Small forward

    Age42

    BirthplaceDaytona Beach, Florida, United States of America

    Number25

    TeamsAtlanta Hawks

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  • 12
    Pete Maravich
    3,474
    2,270

    Pete Maravich

    Shooting guard

    AgeDec. at 41 (1947-1988)

    BirthplaceAliquippa, Pennsylvania

    Number44

    TeamsUtah Jazz, Atlanta Hawks, Boston Celtics, New Orleans Jazz

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  • 13
    Elgin Baylor
    3,449
    2,295

    Elgin Baylor

    Small forward

    Age85

    BirthplaceWashington, D.C., United States of America

    TeamsLos Angeles Lakers

    8 NBA Finals appearances (1959, 1962, 1963, 1965, 1966, 1968, 1969, 1970)

  • 14
    Chris Paul
    3,895
    2,596

    Chris Paul

    Point guard

    Age34

    BirthplaceWinston-Salem, North Carolina, United States of America

    Number3

    TeamsOklahoma City Thunder

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  • 15
    James Harden
    2,379
    1,795

    James Harden

    Shooting guard

    Age30

    BirthplaceLos Angeles, California

    Number13

    TeamsHouston Rockets

    1 NBA Finals appearance (2012)

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  • 16
    Dikembe Mutombo
    2,579
    1,961

    Age53

    BirthplaceKinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo

    TeamsAtlanta Hawks, Philadelphia 76ers, Brooklyn Nets, Houston Rockets, Denver Nuggets

    2 NBA Finals appearance (2001, 2003)

  • 17
    Russell Westbrook
    2,870
    2,191

    Age31

    BirthplaceLong Beach, California

    Number0

    TeamsHouston Rockets

    1 NBA Finals appearance (2012)

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  • 18
    Penny Hardaway
    2,103
    1,595

    Penny Hardaway

    Point guard, Shooting guard

    Age48

    BirthplaceMemphis, Tennessee, United States of America

    TeamsPhoenix Suns, Orlando Magic, Miami Heat, New York Knicks

    1 NBA Finals appearance (1995)

  • 19
    Chris Webber
    2,471
    1,987

    Chris Webber

    Power forward, Center

    Age46

    BirthplaceDetroit, Michigan, United States of America

    TeamsWashington Wizards, Sacramento Kings, Philadelphia 76ers, Golden State Warriors, Detroit Pistons

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  • 20
    Jimmy Butler
    563
    369

    Jimmy Butler

    Small forward

    Age30

    BirthplaceHouston, Texas

    Number21

    TeamsMiami Heat

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  • 21
    Shawn Kemp
    2,238
    1,827

    Shawn Kemp

    Power forward

    Age50

    BirthplaceElkhart, Indiana

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

    1 NBA Finals appearance (1996)

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  • 22
    George Gervin
    2,196
    1,819

    George Gervin

    Shooting guard

    Age67

    BirthplaceDetroit, Michigan

    TeamsChicago Bulls

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  • 23
    Yao Ming
    2,256
    1,852

    Yao Ming

    Center

    Age39

    BirthplaceShanghai, China

    TeamsHouston Rockets

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  • 24
    Derrick Rose
    2,457
    2,014

    Derrick Rose

    Point guard

    Age31

    BirthplaceUSA, Chicago, Illinois

    Number1

    TeamsDetroit Pistons

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  • 25
    Muggsy Bogues
    665
    452

    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 on Wikipedia

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