Having been an avid NBA basketball
fan since 1973, and having watched thousands of games during
that time period, here's my opinion of greatest NBA centers of
Shaquille O'Neill --
greatest center of all-time, by far. No one's close.
Akeem Olajuwon --
untouchable in his prime; carried Houston to two
Patrick Ewing -- about as
good as Chamberlain, but with a better jump shot. If he
played in the early sixties against a league of 6'8" slow
white centers, he'd have scored 50 a game too. Was better
than Olajuwon late in their careers; dominated Mourning and
Mutombo even when they were in their prime. Only problems --
small hands, not a great passer (neither are most centers on
this list), and Michael Jordan.
Wilt Chamberlain --
better than Russell. If he played with 5 hall of famers on
his team, he'd have won 8 championships too. If you rank
them by how a player stood out against the competition they
played against, then Chamberlain goes to #2 on this list; if
you rank them by impact on the game, Chamberlain goes to #1.
Bill Russell -- people
forget how much bigger (and faster) he was than anyone else
when he dominated NBA in late fifties, before Chamberlain
Kareem Abdul Jabbar -- at
7'4" he was so much taller than anyone else he played
against, and had an unstoppable scoring ability. Didn't
rebound much in last 10 years of career though, and wasn't
exactly aggressive on defense..
Bill Walton -- was the
real deal, not just an overrated white guy. He was huge -
7'4" (he refused to be listed at anything higher than 6'11).
He could score, defend, block shots.. And he could pass
better than any center of all time. Career ruined by the
Moses Malone -- in his
day (early eighties), he was unstoppable.
Honorable Mentions: Alonzo
Mourning, Tim Duncan, Kevin Garnett (really a power forward), Bob Lanier,
Robert Parrish, Nate Thurmond, ...
Tell Us What You Think: If
you'd like to respond to this article,