Via Yahoo Sports has discovered who is the ultimate athlete legend. They scraped and analysed over 400,000 tweets containing the phrase ‘GOAT’ and the goat emoji to determine which sports player is the world’s favourite.

They have curated a Top 10 GOAT list for all major sports including Basketball, Football, Soccer and many more.

Top 10 Basketball GOATs

In one of the closest contests across all the categories, Bill Russell takes the GOAT crown for basketball. The former Celtics centre won five MVPs and eleven championships during his time in Boston, as well as two more rings as a coach. 

Edging into second, LeBron James beats Michael Jordan taking him into the third sport out by just over 1% point.

Other all-time players like Kobe Bryant, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Shaquille O’Neal also feature on the list.


During May 2021, scraped and analysed over 400,000 tweets containing the phrase ‘GOAT’ and the goat emoji. They then created a seed list of sportspeople widely considered by sources to be the greatest in their field. They then cleaned their initial list for errors and looked at the frequency to which sportspeople appeared, using the resulting percentage as the basis for the ‘GOAT %’.