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The Best Houston Rockets of All Time

Updated February 25, 2020 32.1k votes 4.6k voters 64.2k views73 items

List RulesPlease rank the players based only on their time with the Rockets

A list of the best Houston Rockets of all time. For much of its history, the Houston Rockets have been one of the most consistent teams in the NBA. The team has had few poor seasons and they have, it's been to the Rockets benefit. The few times that Houston has had the number one draft pick, the team has struck gold landing some of the greatest players in team history. Few, if any, basketball experts would dispute that Elvin Hayes, Ralph Sampson, Hakeem Olajuwon and Yao Ming are among the best centers ever. All of have played center for Houston and all were drafted with the top overall pick in the NBA Draft. Though he wasn't drafted by Houston, Moses Malone is another great big man who has played for the Rockets.

While the Rockets have a rich history with big men, even having some of the best players ever on its roster, that doesn't mean the team has neglected other positions. Calvin Murphy is one of the best free shooting guards ever and the team's acquisition of James Harden made the Rockets one of the most dangerous in the league. Harden is considered one of the best current players in the NBA.

Nowadays, he is known to the masses as an announcer, but Kenny Smith's clutch shooting in the 1995 NBA Finals is one of the greatest in Rockets history and helped them win a second consecutive championship.

This is a list of the best Houston Rockets ever. If you see someone who is missing, feel free to add him. Vote or rerank this list of the greatest Houston Rockets of all time with who you think should be at the top. 

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  • 1
    2,434
    252

    More Hakeem Olajuwon 

    #1787 of 2,753 The Most Influential People of All Time#3 of 107 The Best Foreign NBA Players of All Time

  • 2
    2,207
    539

    James Harden

    Shooting guard

    More James Harden 

    The Best Harden Vol. 4 Colorways, Ranked#51 of 100 The Most Overrated Players In The NBA Today

  • 3
    1,144
    275

    Clyde Drexler

    Shooting guard

    More Clyde Drexler 

    #630 of 1,424 The Best Athletes Of All Time#11 of 175 The Greatest Shooting Guards in NBA History

  • 4
    1,273
    369

    Moses Malone

    Power forward, Center

    More Moses Malone 

    #22 of 31 The Best Power Forwards of the 1990s#3 of 27 The Best Centers of the 70s

  • 5
    1,525
    447

    Yao Ming

    Center

    More Yao Ming 

    #25 of 161 The Best NBA Players With No Championship Rings#23 of 165 The Greatest NBA Centers of All Time

  • 6
    1,640
    510

    Tracy McGrady

    Shooting guard, Small forward

    More Tracy McGrady 

    #32 of 120 The Fastest NBA Players of All Time#17 of 143 Athletes Whose Careers Ended Too Soon

  • 7
    544
    177

    Calvin Murphy

    Point guard
  • 8
    649
    263

    Elvin Hayes

    Power forward, Center

    More Elvin Hayes 

    #20 of 96 The Best Rebounders in NBA History#11 of 25 The Best Power Forwards of the 80s

  • 9
    662
    188

    Chris Paul

    Point guard

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    The Coolest Chris Paul Signature Shoes, Ranked#13 of 40 The Most Hated Active NBA Players

  • 10
    522
    197

    Robert Horry

    Small forward, Power forward

    More Robert Horry 

    #15 of 22 The Best Small Forwards of the 90s#17 of 56 People Who Should Be in the Basketball Hall of Fame

  • 11
    517
    222

    More Ralph Sampson 

    #6 of 25 NBA Players Whose Careers Ended Too Soon#16 of 30 The Best NBA Centers of the '90s

  • 12
    542
    234

    Kenny Smith

    Point guard

    More Kenny Smith 

    #8 of 51 The Greatest UNC Tar Heels Basketball Players of All Time#24 of 27 The Best '90s Point Guards

  • 13
    313
    110

    Vernon Maxwell

    Shooting guard
  • 14
    375
    157

    Rudy Tomjanovich

    Power forward

    More Rudy Tomjanovich 

    #9 of 46 The Greatest Michigan Basketball Players of All Time#79 of 232 The Best White Players in NBA History

  • 15
    325
    100

    Eric Gordon

    Shooting guard

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    #8 of 65 The Greatest Indiana Hoosiers Basketball Players of All Time#27 of 50 The Best Current NBA Free-Throw Shooters

  • 16
    352
    158

    Otis Thorpe

    Power forward, Center
  • 17
    424
    178

    More Dikembe Mutombo 

    #4 of 22 The Greatest Georgetown Basketball Players of All Time#17 of 47 Athletes With the Coolest Post-Sports Careers

  • 18
    610
    312

    Steve Francis

    Point guard, Shooting guard

    More Steve Francis 

    #219 of 227 The Greatest Offensive Players in NBA History#19 of 21 The Best NBA Players Who Rap, Ranked

  • 19
    660
    369

    Charles Barkley

    Power forward

    More Charles Barkley 

    #342 of 362 The Greatest Entertainers Of All Time#4 of 78 The Best Philadelphia 76ers of All Time

  • 20
    319
    144

    Sam Cassell

    Point guard

    More Sam Cassell 

    #129 of 269 The Top NBA Players Of All Time#53 of 133 The Best Boston Celtics of All Time

  • 21
    337
    63

    Clint Capela

    Center

    More 

    #69 of 100 The Most Likable Players In The NBA Today#4 of 67 The Best NBA Centers Right Now

  • 22
    259
    128

    Shane Battier

    Shooting guard, Small forward

    More Shane Battier 

    #6 of 76 The Greatest Duke Basketball Players of All Time#58 of 135 The Best Small Forwards of All Time

  • 23
    171
    60

    Mario Elie

    Shooting guard, Small forward
  • 24
    293
    170

    Trevor Ariza

    Small forward

    More Trevor Ariza 

    #19 of 42 The Greatest UCLA Basketball Players of All Time#66 of 126 The Best NBA Buys for the Money

  • 25
    152
    23

    P. J. Tucker

    Small forward

    More P. J. Tucker 

    #72 of 75 The Best Current Wing Players in the NBA#158 of 168 The Greatest Power Forwards in NBA History