Where Does Kobe Bryant Rank Among the Game’s Greatest Players?


Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant will be recognized as one of the greatest players in NBA history once he finally decides to hang up his sneakers, but exactly where will he fall on that hallowed list?

I consider the top five players in NBA history to be Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Michael Jordan, Bill Russell, and Wilt Chamberlain in no particular order.

Those five players, along with Larry Bird, are each responsible for revolutionizing their respective positions, and changing perception on how the game was viewed.

Magic and Jordan are universally considered to be the greatest players to ever man their positions, while Jabbar, Russell, and Chamberlain are the standard that any center will ever be measured by.

Does Bryant's resume place him in this elite company?

It's always a tricky subject discussing Bryant and his place in NBA history, because his polarizing nature creates critiques which fall outside the lines of basketball.

For this reason opinions on Bryant vary wildly, and while some observers may place him firmly in the top 10 of legendary players, others do not even consider him to be among the top 20.

Bryant's career accomplishments however paint a different picture, and if a person were to go solely by the statistics he has accumulated, it's hard to argue with those numbers.


Magic holds a special place in the hearts of many Lakers fans, but Bryant's numbers suggest he has already surpassed Magic as the greatest player in the history of the franchise.

Bryant has more career points than Magic, and if he manages to win one more championship he will be considered the most successful Laker to ever play the game.

But Magic's contributions to the game transcend the court, as he, Bird, and Jordan are credited to renewing interest in what was once seen as a dying sport.

Likewise, Jabbar...

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