Sports

The Best Short Male Athletes 

Tanner Arnold
Originally by
Updated June 3, 2020 7.2k votes 1.6k voters 31.5k views 21 items

List Rules Professional male athletes under 5'10" from all sports, excluding horse racing

The best short male athletes include World Series champions, Super Bowl winners, Stanley Cup hoisters and Olympic gold medalists but they all share one thing in common, their shorter stature. The best short athletes prove that despite their height, people of all shapes and sizes can be successful professional athletes. All 5'10" or shorter, these athletes are not just the best at their height but also among the best athletes of all time.

For a lot of these athletes, their height can work in their advantage or at least not pose a hindrance on their playing ability. Football players like Barry Sanders, Wes Welker and Ray Rice embrace their height and use it to run fast down the field to rack up yardage and touchdowns. Top boxers, such as the shorter ones like Mike Tyson, Rocky Marciano and Floyd Mayweather, Jr., are the same way with height not much of a factor to their sport.

But for others, being the short guy on the team means you are already at a disadvantage before you even step on the court. That surely didn't stop great short basketball players like Spud Webb, Earl Boykins and Calvin Murphy from having successful careers.

So while these short athletes might have faced adversity and been told that they would never make it, like legendary NFL player Doug Flutie was, they all worked harder and pushed further to achieve their dreams. These best short male athletes really do show that good things definitely do come in small packages.
list ordered by
1
Diego Maradona is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age 55 from Lanús, Argentina

Profession: Talk show host, Manager, Coach, Footballer

Height: 5'4"

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2
Bruce Lee is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Dec. at 33 (1940-1973) from Chinatown, California, United States of America

Profession: Martial Arts Instructor, Film Producer, Screenwriter, Actor, Martial artist, + more

Height: 5'7"

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3
Lionel Messi is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age 31 from Rosario, Argentina

Profession: Footballer

Height: 5'6"

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4
Pelé is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age 75 from Três Corações, Brazil

Profession: Actor, Footballer

Height: 5'8"

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5
Andrés Iniesta is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age 34 from Fuentealbilla, Spain

Profession: Footballer

Height: 5'6"

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6
Jesse Owens is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Dec. at 67 (1913-1980) from Oakville, Alabama, United States of America

Profession: Athlete

Height: 5'10"

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7
George Best is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Dec. at 59 (1946-2005) from Belfast, United Kingdom

Profession: Footballer

Height: 5'8"

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8
Spud Webb is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
randylahey added Age 55 from Dallas, Texas

Profession: Basketball player

Height: 5'6"

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9
Muggsy Bogues is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
randylahey added Age 54 from Baltimore, Maryland, United States of America

Profession: Basketball player, Coach, Actor

Height: 5'2"

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10
Romário is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age 53 from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Profession: Politician, Manager, Footballer

Height: 5'5"

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11
Garrincha is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Dec. at 50 (1933-1983) from Magé, Brazil

Profession: Actor, Footballer

Height: 5'6"

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12
Demetrious Johnson is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
randylahey added Age 32 from Madisonville, Kentucky
13
Henry Cejudo is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
14
Gianfranco Zola is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
Age 52 from Oliena, Italy

Profession: Soccer Player, Manager, Coach

Height: 5'6"

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15
Devonta Freeman is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
LuckyDarth123 added Devonta Freeman Age 26 from Baxley, Georgia

Height: 5'8"

16
Mark McMillian is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
ostentatioussavant666 added Mark McMillian Age 45 from Los Angeles, California

Profession: American football player

17
Tyler Ulis is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
18
Neal Broten is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
willyboymcoy added Age 59 from Roseau, Minnesota

Profession: Ice Hockey Player

19
Dickie Post is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
willyboymcoy added Age 70 from San Pedro, Los Angeles, California

Profession: American football player

20
Danny Gare is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
willyboymcoy added Age 64 from Nelson, Canada

Profession: Ice Hockey Player

Height: 5'8"

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21
Garo Yepremian is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Short Male Athletes
FerrousPatella added Age 71 from Larnaca, Cyprus

Profession: American football player