Sports
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The Best Athletes Who Wore #42

Updated September 24, 2019 1.0k votes 166 voters 8.0k views30 items

List RulesVote up the top athletes who wore 42 for at least one professional season

Many famous athletes who wore 42 as their jersey number created long-lasting legacies and brilliant highlights associated with the number. MLB retired the number 42 in honor of Jackie Robinson as an appreciation for his work breaking down barriers in sports and society. Hall of Fame pitcher Mariano Rivera was the last baseball player to wear 42. Players in other sports still can wear 42, and there are top names with the jersey number both retired and still active today. 

Some of the top basketball players who wore 42 include James Worthy, Kevin Love and Connie Hawkins. Standout football players with number 42 jerseys are Ronnie Lott, Gerald Riggs, and Paul Warfield, who all rocked the jersey in the NFL. With all these great athletes, jersey number 42 rightly has become associated with sports greatness. 

So check out the list of athletes who wore 42 and help decide who deserves to rank the highest for wearing this iconic jersey number. Vote up your favorite athletes to wear the number 42, then head over and check out some other iconic jersey numbers, including the best players to wear No. 23.

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  • Nate Thurmond
    Photo: Metaweb (FB) / Fair use

    League: NBA
    Years active: 1964-1977
    Stats: 964 games played, 15.0 points per game, 15.0 rebounds, 2.7 assists

    Career Highlights

    • 7× NBA All-Star (1965–1968, 1970, 1973, 1974)
    • 2× NBA All-Defensive First Team (1969, 1971)
    • 3× NBA All-Defensive Second Team (1972–1974)
    • Age: 78
    • Birthplace: Akron, Ohio, United States of America
    • Team: Golden State Warriors
    39
    11
    Is this a great athlete?
  • League: NFL
    Years active: 1960-1971
    Stats: 164 games played, 57 interceptions, 1 touchdown

    Career Highlights

    • Super Bowl champion (IV)
    • Pro Bowl (1970)
    • First-team All-Pro (1970)
    • NFL interceptions leader (1970)
    • 3× AFL champion (1962, 1966, 1969)
    • 6× AFL All-Star (1963–1968)
    • 5× First-team All-AFL (1965–1969)
    • 2× Second-team All-AFL (1963, 1964)
    • Age: 81
    • Birthplace: Delhi, Louisiana
    • Team: Kansas City Chiefs
    34
    9
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  • League: NBA
    Years active: 2009-current
    Stats: 657 games played, 18.3 points per games, 11.3 rebounds, 2.3 assists

    Career Highlights

    • NBA champion (2016)
    • 5× NBA All-Star (2011, 2012, 2014, 2017, 2018)
    • 2× All-NBA Second Team (2012, 2014)
    • NBA Most Improved Player (2011)
    • Age: 32
    • Birthplace: Santa Monica, California, United States of America
    • Team: Minnesota Timberwolves
    40
    19
    Is this a great athlete?

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  • Paul Warfield
    Photo: Michael Chang / Getty Images

    League: NFL
    Years active: 1964-1977
    Stats: 8,565 receiving yards, 85 receiving touchdowns, 204 rushing yards

    Career Highlights

    • 2× Super Bowl champion (VII, VIII)
    • NFL champion (1964)
    • 8× Pro Bowl (1964, 1968–1974)
    • 6× First-team All-Pro (1964, 1968, 1969, 1971–1973)
    • Second-team All-Pro (1970)
    • Age: 77
    • Birthplace: Warren, Ohio
    • Team: Cleveland Browns, Miami Dolphins
    22
    2
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