Bill Russell
The resume won’t do Bill justice, many of the accolades we lean on today simply weren’t available during Russell’s run. We can safely assume he would have 10+ All-NBA Defense honours had they been distributed in his day. He’d undoubtedly own multiple Defensive Player of the Year Awards and I think it’s also safe to say he’d own a few of his namesakes (The Finals MVP award).
Accolades be damned, nobody collected the hardware Bill Russell did. Say what you want about the league he played in, the horrid efficiency, his stacked teams, or any other deterrents you can think of, winners win.
It’s hard to rank Russell, clearly, three voters had him in the top two, and three voters had him outside the top 10. You see the confusion in pub discussion, message boards, and on social media. Some see the 11 rings and high regard his teammates had for him, enamoured with his ultimate winner status they place him up top. Others have shamelessly claimed he’d be Ben Wallace in this generation, that’s a tad bonkers. No offense to Big Ben.
At the end of the day, we know Russell bested the leagues top talent again and again. He did everything asked of him as a leader and player, if you were a Celtics fan what more could you ask for? Russell delivered.

The Resume:

Second Overall Pick 1956 – St. Louis Hawks

12x All-Star

11x All-NBA

1x All-NBA Defense

All-Star MVP

5x MVP

11x Champion

Hall of Fame

How did the guys rank him?

The Flag Bearer: Jacob Noble, Justin Termine, and Marc Griffin (2).

The Barn Burner: Robert Littal (12).

How did the other guys rank Russell: Justin Rowan (3), Brian Geltzeiler (3), Matt Drappel (4), Lang Greene (4), Justin Salkin (4), Adi Joseph (5), James Holas (8), Shane Young (8), Josh Eberley (11), and Will Reeve (11).

Average vote: 5.6


Wilt Chamberlain, Bill Russell


#3 Monday, October 5th.


Don’t like it? Think we got it wrong? Maybe, just maybe we got it right? Let us know using the #HCHot50 hash-tag. Or give the contributors hell, contact info below. Any tweets with #HCHot50 may be featured on the site going forward, tweet us your feedback!



Josh Eberley – / Host of the @PullUpPodcastHC, @JoshEberley

Jacob Noble – / Host of the @PullUpPodcastHC, @JacobNoble_HC

James Holas – / BballBreakdown, @SnottieDrippen

Adi Joseph –, @AdiJoseph

Matt Drappel –, @MattyD416

Justin Rowan – /, @Cavsanada

Robert Littal –, @BSO

Shane Young –, @YoungNBA

Justin Termine – Sirius XM NBA / host, @TermineRadio

Marc Griffin – /, @montrealmarc

Lang Greene –, @LangGreene

Justin Salkin – /, @brooklynsbeat

Will Reeve – / Host of the All Weather Fan Podcast, contributor for @WillReeveJr

and of course,

Brian Geltzeiler – / Sirius XM NBA / /, @hoopscritic


Links to previous #HCHot50 pages:

HCHot50 Intro / Missed the Cut

#50 Pete Maravich

#49 Dave Cowens
#48 Wes Unseld
#47 Dolph Schayes
#46 Paul Pierce
#45 Kevin Durant
#44 Dominique Wilkins
#43 Chris Paul
#42 Bill Walton
#41 Gary Payton
#40 Elvin Hayes
#39 Clyde Drexler
#38 Allen Iverson
#37 Steve Nash
#36 Willis Reed
#35 George Mikan
#34 Patrick Ewing
#33 Kevin McHale
#32 Jason Kidd
#31 George Gervin
#30 Walt Frazier
#29 Dwyane Wade
#28 Rick Barry
#27 Bob Cousy
#26 Scottie Pippen
#25 John Stockton
#24 David Robinson
#23 Dirk Nowtizki
#22 John Havlicek
#21 Isiah Thomas
#20 Bob Pettit
#19 Kevin Garnett
#18 Charles Barkley
#17 Karl Malone
#16 Moses Malone
#15 Elgin Baylor
#14 Julius Erving
#13 Jerry West
#12 Hakeem Olajuwon
#11 Oscar Robertson
#10 Shaquille O’Neal
#9 Kobe Bryant
#8 Tim Duncan
#7 LeBron James
#6 Larry Bird
#5 Wilt Chamberlain

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