All-time ranking lists can be a fun topic for debate. Some lists spark lively debates; others are dismissed as crazy or totally off the mark. What about basketball’s top-ranked players of all time?
A website called AinsworthSports.com has rankings for a wide range of sports and leagues, including pro basketball, primarily the NBA. For basketball, the website has rankings by decade, by position, by team, by home state, by college, by half decade, by rookie year, among other categories.
The all-time rankings list is seemingly endless. It goes beyond the top 1,0000. Actually, it stops at No. 5,000.
That ranking goes to … point guard Tony E. Jackson, who had a two-game stint with the Los Angeles Lakers in the 1980-81 season. He scored one point.
For the all-time rankings, here’s how it was done (from the website):
All qualified players are statistically ranked by position every year.
The players receive a rating that is not posted on the website.
The rating for basketball players is the average rank of their 7 best years + a fraction of the average ranking for all qualifying years.
Players who have not or did not play 7 qualifying years receive a penalty to the rating for every year under 7 that they played.
Ainsworth Sports’ Top 50:
Who else made the website’s top 1,000?
There may be more than a few surprises.