The 75 greatest players in NBA history, ranked by Player Efficiency Rating (PER)

The 75 greatest NBA players of all-time, ranked by PER
Tim Duncan, Kobe Bryant
Tim Duncan, Kobe Bryant / Harry How/GettyImages
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4.    Anthony Davis-26.84

Los Angeles Lakers superstar Anthony Davis has been in the league for more than a decade now and while he hasn't quite reinvented the game the way many thought he would, he has still been a dominant player. Despite never winning Defensive Player of the Year, Davis has been a defensive force ever since he started his career back with the New Orleans Pelicans in 2012. 

Now with the Lakers, he has helped lead them to a championship in 2020, the Western Conference Finals in 2023 and the first ever NBA Cup title in 2023. That alone should cement his place in history and, according to PER, Davis is a top-5 player, and he certainly has a statistical case. 

Over his 12-season career, he's averaged 24.1 points on a terrific 59.2% true shooting, 10.6 rebounds, 2.5 blocks, and 1.3 steals. That helps to explain his terrific 26.8 PER and his place in the top 5. 

Few players have averaged more than 24 points on great efficiency as well as 3.8 stocks (steals and blocks). As a result, unlike other players on this list whose defense was underrated, Davis' impact on that end of the floor helps him stand out in this metric.