Top 10 verticals in nba history
Michael Jordan “stomps the yard” when it comes to the highest vertical leap in NBA history. No wonder he was able to put basketball fans on the edge of their seats, holding their collective breadths, as he flew through the air. Just how high was Air Jordan’s vertical leap? Where do other great NBA stars rank in this category while compared to His Airness?
The vertical leap is the measurement of a player’s jump from a standing position. A high vertical leap usually transcends into a higher running leap. The higher the player can jump, the more ferocious and spectacular is his dunk.
What made or makes talented jumpers like Jordan, Dr. J, and Vince Carter exciting to watch is the use of slow-motion replay. No other league is better suited for this amazing technology than the NBA. The original jump happens too quickly to truly appreciate, but in slow-motion replay, the player appears to be gracefully soaring through the air as if taking off on a trans-atlantic flight. It is an allusion that drives fans crazy! Its electrifying!
This slideshow is a tribute to Michael Jordan, and ten other NBA stars who were also phenomenal leapers in their own right. It also includes an “honorable mention” section that, low and behold, includes some NBA players (while not stars) could actually out jump some of the ranked NBA stars! Be warned however, because you will experience high turbulence caused by a rollercoaster surprise ending.
Are you ready? OK then, we have takeoff!
10 Julius Erving, AKA Dr. J
Erving’s 41 inch vertical leap puts the top of his head a full 1 inch below the rim and a whole 7 inches lower than His Airness. Dr. J was the first spectacular “showoff jumper dunker” in the NBA. He was an inspiration to future NBA jumpers including Dominique Wilkins and Michael Jordan. I wonder if the good Dr. makes house calls to the International Space Station?
9 Dominique Wilkins: The Human Highlight Film
Wilkins’ 42 inch (6 inches less than Jordan’s) vertical leap puts the top of his head a full 2 inches above the rim and a whole 4 inches lower than His Airness. He spent much of his career in the shadow of Jordan, but was so good he should be in the top 50 players of all time. Wilkins was a true Hawk.. a bird of prey who soared over other birds before dunking on them. Poor Larry Bird!
8 Tracy McGrady, AKA T-Mac
McGrady’s 42 inch (6 inches less than Jordan’s) vertical leap puts the top of his head a full 2 inches above the rim, and a whole 4 inches lower than His Airness. McGrady was one of the most explosive scorers the game has ever seen. Unfortunately he has lost a step or two, which is sad since he’s about the same age as Kobe who is still flourishing. If T-Mac and his cousin, Vince Carter stayed in Toronto they might have a championship. Too bad they flew the coup!
7 Vince Carter, AKA Vinsanity
Carter’s 43 inch (5 inches less than Jordan’s) vertical leap puts the top of his head a full 1 inches above the rim and a whole 5 inches lower than His Airness. Big surprise here because most people would have thought Carter would be at the top of this list!
6 Clyde Drexler, Aka Clyde The Glide
Drexler’s 43 inch vertical leap puts the top of his head a full 2 inches above the rim and 4 inches lower than His Airness. Unfortunately for Drexler, as good as he was, he spent much of his career gliding in Jordan’s shadow.
5 Nate Robinson, Aka Krypto-Nate
Robinson’s 43.5 inch vertical leap puts the top of his head only 5 inches below the rim and like Web, an incredible feat for someone so short. Actually 5 ft 9 is supposed to be average height… but definitely midget status in the freakish NBA where even Dwayne Wade (6 ft. 4) is considered short!
4 LeBron James, AKA King James
James’ 44 inch (4 inches less than Jordan’s) vertical leap puts the top of his head a full 4 inches above the rim and only two inches lower than His Airness. This takes into account James’ 2 inch height advantage over Jordan. Lebron is a beast, but not the biggest beast in the sky! Not sure what all the fuss has been about Lebron this past summer, because the dude is built for flying south!
3 Bernard King
King’s just under 4 foot vertical leap put the top of his head a full 5 inches above the rim and only one inch lower than His Airness. King had 5 high scoring glorious years with the Knicks before breaking his leg and losing his explosive jumping power. He was a scoring machine! Unfortunately also for King, he spent much of his productive years in Michael Jordan’s shadow.
2 Anthony Webb, AKA Spud Web
Web’s just under 4 foot vertical leap put the top of his head only 5 inches below the rim, an incredible feat for someone so short. This dude’s 2 inches shorter than Nate Robinson! Like Nate, playing in the NBA at this height is extremely rare.
1 Darrel Griffith, Aka Dr. Dunkenstein
Never heard of this dude, but a 4 foot (48″) vertical leap puts him on the freaking moon! His vertical leap is as high as Jordan’s! That puts the top of his head a full 4 inches above the rim and only two inches lower than His Airness. Who is this guy? !