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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68.    George Yardley-20.62

Basketball Hall of Famer George Yardley is one of the lesser-known players to make the cut, though he was one of the best players of the 1950s. Although Yardley played just eight seasons in the NBA, he made six straight all-star teams, mostly for the Fort Wayne Pistons, and led the NBA in scoring during the 1957–58 season. 

He averaged a terrific 27.8 points and 10.7 rebounds as a member of the Detroit Pistons once the team relocated and even finished third in MVP voting behind fellow Hall of Famers Bill Russell and Dolph Schayes. That proved to be the peak of his playing career but he continued to put up strong numbers over the remainder, proving to be a nightly double-double threat. 

He ended his short career as a member of the Syracuse Nationals, now the Philadelphia 76ers, with a career average of 19.2 points and 8.9 rebounds. He also had an above-average true shooting percentage, resulting in an impressive 20.62 PER, which ranks 68th on this list.

One of the goals of PER is to be able to make it easier to compare players across different seasons. A PER over 20 is all-star level, showing us that Yardley was a star and while many may be unfamiliar with him, he was definitely one of the best of his era.