So many different things make a great basketball player. Dribbling, shooting, dunking, and passing are all essential tools in a player’s skill set. One thing you can’t learn is height. Height wins you points on the basketball court as it gives you rebounds. These are the big players who lead in NBA all-time rebounds.
Moses Malone – 16,212
Moses Malone had a well-traveled NBA career, playing with over five different teams including the 76ers, the Bucks, and the Hawks. Standing at 6’10” he was not easy to get around as many opposing players found when taking the ball to the basket. He wasn’t afraid to score either and registered 27,409 career points. His overall dominance saw him named the league MVP three times, and he was fortunate enough to have won the championship once with the 76ers.
Elvin Hayes – 16,279
Elvin Hayes played over 1,000 games in the NBA for the Rockets and the Bullets during the ‘70s and ‘80s. He totaled 16,279 rebounds during his career which helped to earn his spot in the Hall of Fame. Hayes also knew where the basket was, and found it regularly, putting him in the top ten all-time scorers in the league. He has 27,313 points, making him one of the most formidable players ever in the NBA.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar – 17,440
The all-time leading scorer in the NBA also has the third highest number of career rebounds with 17,440. Abdul-Jabbar needs little introduction to most NBA fanatics, but to others he is a Lakers legend, winning the championship five times with them. He also helped the Bucks win an NBA Championship and was the league MVP six times during his career.
Bill Russell – 21,620
If there was one thing Celtics fans could rely on Bill Russell for, it was keeping the ball alive. The late center won a record 11 NBA Championships during his playing career, and a large part of that was down to Russell. He scored 21,620 rebounds over that time, making him a five-time NBA MVP. Russell knew what it took to win and followed up his playing success with two NBA Championships as a coach in the late ‘60s.
Wilt Chamberlain – 23,924
If you ever saw Wilt Chamberlain play in the NBA, you don’t have to look far to find him. He’d either be under the opponent’s basket scoring points or under his own preventing them. Chamberlain stood at 7 ft 1, but he wasn’t just about height, he was incredibly strong too. He has over 30,000 career points, but not a single one came from outside the three-point line. He scored 23,924 rebounds during his time with the Lakers, 76ers, and Warriors.
Any time a coach came up against one of these players he knew they were going to be a problem. Not only could they stop attacks in their tracks, but they could pop up at the other end of the court and keep an offense alive. They are the best rebounders in the history of the NBA.