Sports

The Best Athletes Who Wore #1 

Ranker Sports
Updated February 19, 2020 554 votes 99 voters 4.4k views 30 items

List Rules Vote up the top athletes who wore 1 for at least one professional season

The list of famous athletes who wore 1 as their jersey number showcases greatness across all sports. Many incredible players wanted to showcase they were the No. 1 player in their respective sport by wearing the number on their uniform. 

Some of the premier NFL players with the No. 1 jersey include legendary quarterback Warren Moon and current football star Cam Newton. Meanwhile, names like Oscar Robertson, Tracy McGrady, and Kemba Walker are among the top basketball players who wore 1 on their uniforms. Baseball and hockey also have strong representation for this jersey number in the history of the NHL and MLB. 

So check out the list of athletes who wore 1 and help decide who deserves to rank the highest for wearing this iconic jersey number. Vote up your favorite athletes to wear the number 1, then head over and check out some other iconic jersey numbers, including the best players to wear No. 11.

Terry Sawchuk is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Athletes Who Wore #1
Photo: Metaweb (FB)

League: NHL
Years active: 1950-1970
Stats: 971 games played, 445 wins, 10,376 saves

Career Highlights

  • 4x Stanley Cup Champion (1952, 1954, 1955, 1967)
  • 7x All-Star
  • 4x Vezina Trophy Winner

Age: Dec. at 41 (1929-1970)

Birthplace: Winnipeg, Canada

Team: Detroit Red Wings

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#84 of 119 The Greatest Left-Handed Athletes of All Time #4 of 104 The Top Hockey Goaltenders of All Time

Jacques Plante is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Athletes Who Wore #1
Photo: Wikimedia Commons

League: NHL
Years active: 1953-1975
Stats: 837 games played, 437 wins, 20,864 saves

Career Highlights

  • 6x Stanley Cup Champion (1953, 1956-1959, 1960)
  • 7x All-Star
  • 7x Vezina Trophy Winner
  • Hart Memorial Trophy Winner (1962)

Age: Dec. at 57 (1929-1986)

Birthplace: Notre-Dame-du-Mont-Carmel, Canada

Team: Montreal Canadiens, New York Rangers, Toronto Maple Leafs

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#6 of 104 The Top Hockey Goaltenders of All Time #6 of 108 The Greatest Montreal Canadiens of All Time

Oscar Robertson is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Athletes Who Wore #1
Photo: Unknown/Wikimedia Commons/Public Domain

League: NBA
Years active: 1961-1974
Stats: 1040 games played, 25.7 points per game, 9.5 assists, 7.5 rebounds

Career Highlights

  • NBA champion (1971)
  • NBA Most Valuable Player (1964)
  • 12× NBA All-Star (1961–1972)
  • 3× NBA All-Star Game MVP (1961, 1964, 1969)
  • 9× All-NBA First Team (1961–1969)
  • 2× All-NBA Second Team (1970, 1971)
  • NBA Rookie of the Year (1961)

Age: 81

Birthplace: Charlotte, Tennessee, United States of America

Team: Milwaukee Bucks

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#7 of 878 The Top NBA Players Of All Time #7 of 55 The Best No. 1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time, Ranked

Ozzie Smith is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Athletes Who Wore #1
Photo: Wikimedia Commons

League: MLB
Years active: 1978-1996
Stats: .262 batting average, 28 home runs, 793 RBIs, 580 stolen bases

Career Highlights

  • 15× All-Star (1981–1992, 1994–1996)
  • World Series champion (1982)
  • NLCS MVP (1985)
  • 13× Gold Glove Award (1980–1992)
  • Silver Slugger Award (1987)

Age: 65

Birthplace: Mobile, Alabama, United States of America

Team: St. Louis Cardinals

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