The best shot blockers in Basketball are often the last line of defense.Once all options have failed it’s those giant athletes with positional awareness, anticipation and extreme athleticism that protect the rim. Get OOOUUUUUTTTT! But who are the best shot blockers of all time?
Who has the most Blocks in the NBA? Hakeem Olajuan leads the NBA all time in blocked shots. He rejected 3,830 in the Regular season alone. Leading Dikembe Mutombo (3,289) and Kareem (3,189) all time. The post season is led by Tim Duncan (568) who leads Kareem (476) and Hakeem (472).
Hakeem (3.09) also leads Mutombo (2.75) and Kareem (2.57) in blocks per game as well. So it wasn’t as if he just played more games than his rivals for top spot. It’s worth noting however that even Hakeem is only in 3rd place all time when it comes to blocks per game. Mark Eaton (3.5) and Manute Bol (3.34) are first and second respectively. Eaten was a fabulous shot blocker, who has 3 of the 5 top seasons for most total blocks. The 7 foot 4 Utah Center came into the league late, at the age of 26 and played almost 400 less regular season games than Olajuwan.
Regular Season Career Block leaders
The table below shows the 20 All time regular season block leaders as of the end of the 2022 season. We have included the numbers up to 13 and highlighted those players currently still active in bold.
|Regular Season Blocks (inc ABA stats)|
There really isn’t much to say about this table that we haven’t covered above. The list is littered with athletic giants who played a lot of games. Most of the greatest big men of all time feature. The only active player to make the top 20 is 36 year old, 3 time Defensive Player of the Year Dwight Howard, appearing at number 15. With changes to how the game is played and officiated in the last decade it is unlikely we will see a challenger to the top 10 again.
The Playoffs on the other hand…
Regular Season vs Playoff Blocks
As you’ll probably know, when people talk about all time leaders in the NBA, it is by default assumed they are just talking about the regular season. Unless specifically stated otherwise this doesn’t count the Playoffs. So let’s do that, after all, elite defense in the playoffs, when people really want to score, is surely a more impressive feat!
|Playoff Blocks (inc ABA stats)|
The “Big Fundamental” Tim Duncan jumps from a respectable 6th in the Regular season to number 1 with a bullet in the postseason. His 5 titles and numerous deep playoff runs would have seen to that.
We also see some interesting names appearing. Alongside Dwight (14th) in the active players column we have Serge Ibaka (9th) and Lebron James (11th). Lebron isn’t the only “perimeter” based player to make an appearance. Julius “Dr J” Irving is at 8th (as we included his ABA stats as well) and Robert Horry sneaks in somewhat surprisingly at 17th. He has won 7 NBA titles though (1 more than Michael Jordan), so had plenty of opportunity to put the stats up. Hakeem, 3rd on this list, leads the NBA in historic Playoff Blocks per game. Notching a massive 3.26 on his way to 2 NBA titles. Consolidating his position as the greatest shot blocker of all time.
What Guard has the most NBA Blocks all time?
We would have to say that Michael Jordan is the guard with the most Regular Season blocks all time. He sits 125th on the list with 893.
Just ahead of him are Julius Irving and George Ghervin, although they did play as guards from time to time, they should be considered small forwards.
Vince Carter 888 and Dwayne Wade 885 are just behind the GOAT.
Defense is great, isn’t it?
Here’s a massive block party for you all to enjoy