Greatest NBA Player #1: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar- 273.41
Although he was surpassed as the all-time scorer by LeBron James last season, Kareem still holds the edge in win shares. After all, scoring only accounts for a portion of the formula that goes into win shares, and Abdul-Jabbar holds a major advantage in rebounding and blocked shots. At 7’2 in shoes, his length and sheer size made him a matchup nightmare, and his skyhook made his shot virtually unblockable. That obviously came in handy during his 20-season career, which spanned from the late 1960s to the late 1980s.
During his first six seasons in the NBA, all with the Milwaukee Bucks, Abdul-Jabbar, then known as Lew Alcinder, took the league by storm. He averaged an outrageous 30.4 points, 15.3 rebounds, 4.3 assists, and 1.1 blocks in a total of 467 games. He also led the team to a championship in 1970 before later being traded to the Los Angeles Lakers.
There, he cemented his legacy by winning five MVPs and five championships in 14 seasons. His dominance as a scorer, rebounder, and shot blocker combined with his near unprecedented longevity make him one of the five greatest players of all time, no matter what metric is used. But, using win shares, he is the greatest of all time.