Bill Russell won 11 championships with the Boston Celtics, an NBA record.

The following is a list of National Basketball Association (NBA) players who won the most championships as a player. The NBA is a major professional basketball league in North America. It was founded in 1946 as the Basketball Association of America (BAA).[1] The league adopted its current name at the start of the 1949–50 season when it merged with the National Basketball League (NBL).[2] The NBA Finals is the championship series for the NBA and the conclusion of the sport's postseason. The winning team of the series receives the Larry O'Brien Championship Trophy. Players from the winning team usually receive championship rings from the team honoring their contribution, with "rings" becoming shorthand for championships.[3] However, in some rare occasion, the teams opted to give other commemorative items, such as wrist watches, instead of rings.[4][5] The number of championships won by NBA superstars is often used as a measurement of their greatness.[6] Though this has been subject to criticism and debate with some arguing that is a misconception and that championships matter less overall in the measure of a players greatness as many great players have played on teams that were considered weak or failed to meet the status of a contender despite having a great player. And many players considered below average have played on strong teams that won championships consistently and were consistently contenders.[7]

Boston Celtics center Bill Russell holds the record for the most NBA championships won with 11 titles during his 13-year playing career.[8] He won his first championship with the Boston Celtics in his rookie year. Afterwards, he went on to win ten championships in the next 12 years, including eight consecutive championships from 1959 to 1966.[9] He won his last two championships in 1968 and 1969 as a player-coach.[8] Russell's teammate, Sam Jones, won ten championships from 1959 to 1969, the second most in NBA history.[10] Four Celtics players, Tom Heinsohn, K. C. Jones, Satch Sanders and John Havlicek, won eight championships each, with Havlicek being the only one to win championships independently of Russell.[11][12][13][14] Two other Celtics, Jim Loscutoff and Frank Ramsey, won seven championships each.[15][16][17]

Robert Horry also won seven championships (with three teams). Four players, Bob Cousy, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen, won six championships each.[18][19] Jordan and Pippen are members of the Chicago Bulls team who won three consecutive championships twice in the 1990s.[20][21] George Mikan won two championships in the NBL before it merged with the BAA to form the NBA, and won five championships in the NBA. Magic Johnson won five championships with the Los Angeles Lakers in the 1980s and Dennis Rodman with the Detroit Pistons and Chicago Bulls.

As of 2020, Robert Horry, John Salley, LeBron James and Danny Green are the only players to have won championships with three different teams.[22] Horry won seven championships: two with the Houston Rockets, three with the Los Angeles Lakers and another two with San Antonio Spurs.[17] Salley's four NBA titles came via two championships with the Detroit Pistons and one each with the Bulls and the Lakers.[23] Horry is also the only non-Celtic to win more than six times. Frank Saul, Steve Kerr, Patrick McCaw, Danny Green and Chris Boucher are the only players to win two championships with two different teams in consecutive seasons.[24] Saul won consecutive championships with the Rochester Royals and the Minneapolis Lakers in the 1950s,[25] Kerr won consecutive championships with the Bulls and the Spurs in the 1990s, McCaw and Boucher with the Golden State Warriors and the Toronto Raptors in 2018 and 2019, and Green with the Raptors and Los Angeles Lakers in 2019 and 2020.[26] Both Saul and Kerr won NBA championships for four years in a row, each having participated in three-peats, Saul with the Lakers and Kerr with the Bulls.

List

Pos G Guard F Forward C Center
* Denotes players who have been inducted to the Basketball Hall of Fame
^ Denotes players who are currently active in the NBA
Not yet eligible for Hall of Fame consideration[a]
No. Player Pos Seasons Championship teams Ref.
Played Win pct.
11 Bill Russell*[a] C 13 85% Boston Celtics (1957, 1959, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965, 1966, 1968, 1969) [27]
10 Sam Jones* G 12 83% Boston Celtics (1959, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965, 1966, 1968, 1969) [10]
8 Tom Heinsohn*[b] F 9 89% Boston Celtics (1957, 1959, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965) [11]
K. C. Jones*[c] G 9 89% Boston Celtics (1959, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965, 1966) [12]
Satch Sanders*[d] F 13 62% Boston Celtics (1961, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965, 1966, 1968, 1969) [13]
John Havlicek* F/G 16 50% Boston Celtics (1963, 1964, 1965, 1966, 1968, 1969, 1974, 1976) [14]
7 Jim Loscutoff[e] F 9 78% Boston Celtics (1957, 1959, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1963, 1964) [15]
Frank Ramsey* F/G 9 78% [16]
Robert Horry F 16 44% Houston Rockets (1994, 1995)
Los Angeles Lakers (2000, 2001, 2002)
San Antonio Spurs (2005, 2007)
[17]
6 Bob Cousy* G 14 43% Boston Celtics (1957, 1959, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1963) [18]
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar*
(formerly Lew Alcindor)[f]
C 20 30% Milwaukee Bucks (1971)
Los Angeles Lakers (1980, 1982, 1985, 1987, 1988)
[19]
Michael Jordan* G 15 40% Chicago Bulls (1991, 1992, 1993, 1996, 1997, 1998) [20]
Scottie Pippen* F 17 35% [21]
5 George Mikan* C 7 71% Minneapolis Lakers (1949, 1950, 1952, 1953, 1954) [28]
Jim Pollard* F 7 71% [29]
Slater Martin* G 11 45% Minneapolis Lakers (1950, 1952, 1953, 1954)
St. Louis Hawks (1958)
[30]
Larry Siegfried G 9 56% Boston Celtics (1964, 1965, 1966, 1968, 1969) [31]
Don Nelson*[g] F 14 36% Boston Celtics (1966, 1968, 1969, 1974, 1976) [32]
Michael Cooper G/F 12 42% Los Angeles Lakers (1980, 1982, 1985, 1987, 1988) [33]
Magic Johnson* G 13 38% [34]
Dennis Rodman* F 14 36% Detroit Pistons (1989, 1990)
Chicago Bulls (1996, 1997, 1998)
[35]
Ron Harper G 15 33% Chicago Bulls (1996, 1997, 1998)
Los Angeles Lakers (2000, 2001)
[36]
Steve Kerr[h] G 15 33% Chicago Bulls (1996, 1997, 1998)
San Antonio Spurs (1999, 2003)
[26]
Kobe Bryant* G 20 25% Los Angeles Lakers (2000, 2001, 2002, 2009, 2010) [37]
Derek Fisher G 18 28% [38]
Tim Duncan* F/C 19 26% San Antonio Spurs (1999, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2014) [39]
4 Vern Mikkelsen* F 10 40% Minneapolis Lakers (1950, 1952, 1953, 1954) [40]
Frank Saul G 6 67% Rochester Royals (1951)
Minneapolis Lakers (1952, 1953, 1954)
[25]
Bill Sharman*[i] G 11 36% Boston Celtics (1957, 1959, 1960, 1961) [41]
Gene Guarilia F 4 100% Boston Celtics (1960, 1961, 1962, 1963) [42]
Jamaal Wilkes* G/F 12 33% Golden State Warriors (1975)
Los Angeles Lakers (1980, 1982, 1985[j])
[43]
Kurt Rambis F 14 29% Los Angeles Lakers (1982, 1985, 1987, 1988) [44]
Robert Parish* C 21 19% Boston Celtics (1981, 1984, 1986)
Chicago Bulls (1997)
[45]
Will Perdue C 13 31% Chicago Bulls (1991, 1992, 1993)
San Antonio Spurs (1999)
[46]
John Salley F/C 11 36% Detroit Pistons (1989, 1990)
Chicago Bulls (1996)
Los Angeles Lakers (2000)
[23]
Horace Grant F/C 17 24% Chicago Bulls (1991, 1992, 1993)
Los Angeles Lakers (2001)
[47]
Shaquille O'Neal* C 19 21% Los Angeles Lakers (2000, 2001, 2002)
Miami Heat (2006)
[48]
Manu Ginóbili* G 16 25% San Antonio Spurs (2003, 2005, 2007, 2014) [49]
Tony Parker* G 18 22% [50]
LeBron James^ F/G 20 20% Miami Heat (2012, 2013)
Cleveland Cavaliers (2016)
Los Angeles Lakers (2020)
[51]
Stephen Curry^ G 14 29% Golden State Warriors (2015, 2017, 2018, 2022) [52]
Draymond Green^ F 11 36% [53]
Andre Iguodala F 19 21% [54]
Klay Thompson^ G 10 40% [55]
3 Bob Harrison G 9 33% Minneapolis Lakers (1950, 1952, 1953) [56]
Whitey Skoog G 6 50% Minneapolis Lakers (1952, 1953, 1954) [57]
Gene Conley G 6 50% Boston Celtics (1959, 1960, 1961) [58]
Clyde Lovellette* C 11 27% Minneapolis Lakers (1954)
Boston Celtics (1963, 1964)
[59]
Willie Naulls F 10 30% Boston Celtics (1964, 1965, 1966) [60]
Paul Silas F 16 19% Boston Celtics (1974, 1976)
Seattle SuperSonics (1979)
[61]
Mitch Kupchak F/C 11 27% Washington Bullets (1978)
Los Angeles Lakers (1982[k], 1985)
[62]
Dennis Johnson* G 14 21% Seattle SuperSonics (1979)
Boston Celtics (1984, 1986)
[63]
Larry Bird* F 13 23% Boston Celtics (1981, 1984, 1986) [64]
Kevin McHale* F 13 23% [65]
Byron Scott G 14 21% Los Angeles Lakers (1985, 1987, 1988) [66]
James Worthy* F 12 25% [67]
Gerald Henderson G 13 23% Boston Celtics (1981, 1984)
Detroit Pistons (1990)
[68]
B. J. Armstrong G 11 27% Chicago Bulls (1991, 1992, 1993) [69]
Bill Cartwright C 15 20% [70]
Stacey King F/C 8 38% [71]
John Paxson G 11 27% [72]
Scott Williams F/C 15 20% [73]
James Edwards C 19 16% Detroit Pistons (1989, 1990)
Chicago Bulls (1996)
[74]
Randy Brown G 12 25% Chicago Bulls (1996, 1997, 1998) [75]
Jud Buechler F 12 25% [76]
Toni Kukoč* F 13 23% [77]
Luc Longley C 10 30% [78]
Dickey Simpkins F/C 7 43% [79]
Bill Wennington C 13 23% [80]
Mario Elie G/F 11 27% Houston Rockets (1994, 1995)
San Antonio Spurs (1999)
[81]
A.C. Green F 16 19% Los Angeles Lakers (1987, 1988, 2000) [82]
Rick Fox F 13 23% Los Angeles Lakers (2000, 2001, 2002) [83]
Devean George F 11 27% [84]
Brian Shaw G 14 21% [85]
Bruce Bowen F 13 23% San Antonio Spurs ( 2003, 2005, 2007) [86]
Sam Cassell G 15 20% Houston Rockets (1994, 1995)
Boston Celtics (2008)
[87]
Udonis Haslem F/C 19 16% Miami Heat (2006, 2012, 2013) [88]
Dwyane Wade* G 16 19% [89]
James Jones F 14 21% Miami Heat (2012, 2013)
Cleveland Cavaliers (2016)
[90]
Shaun Livingston G 14 21% Golden State Warriors (2015, 2017, 2018) [91]
Patrick McCaw G/F 5 60% Golden State Warriors (2017, 2018)
Toronto Raptors (2019)
[92]
Danny Green^ G 14 21% San Antonio Spurs (2014)
Toronto Raptors (2019)
Los Angeles Lakers (2020)
[93]
JaVale McGee^ C 15 20% Golden State Warriors (2017, 2018)
Los Angeles Lakers (2020)
[94]
Kevon Looney^ F/C 8 38% Golden State Warriors (2017, 2018, 2022) [95]

See also

Notes

  1. ^ A player is not eligible for induction into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame until he has been fully retired for three calendar years.

References

Citations

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