The NBA playoffs are still a couple of months away but NBA stars are already getting ready to make sure they show up for their teams. After all, NBA superstars have the most pressure to perform and their performances will dictate how the season ends for their teams. Most often, superstars show up and put forth fantastic performances to spearhead their teams to victory. We crown an NBA champion every year and getting through each playoff series is the most important part of being in the postseason.
That is why the postseason is where great players make their name. We have seen how dominant NBA champions such as Michael Jordan and Bill Russell win over 100 games each in the postseason, en route to a ridiculous amount of championships (17 combined). But which NBA stars have collected the most postseason wins in NBA history? We have the top-10 list of NBA players with the most playoff wins, and one thing will be clear: only players from the Bulls, Lakers, and Spurs will appear on this legendary list. Not to mention, there is only one active player on the list as well.
10. Shaquille O’Neal - 129 Wins (216 Games)
Considered the most dominant physical specimen to ever play the game, 4-time NBA champion and 3-time Finals MVP Shaquille O’Neal kicks off the top-10 list of players with the most playoff victories. O’Neal was a superstar with the Orlando Magic, appearing in 3 seasons worth of playoff appearances which included a Finals appearance in 1995. But O’Neal had his most success with the Los Angeles Lakers, where he would solidify himself as one of the top-five centers ever.
Shaq had an unbelievable 8 seasons worth of playoff appearances with the Lakers, making the Finals 4 times and winning 3 titles. Of course, O’Neal was incredibly dominant during each Finals run and formed arguably the best duo in NBA history with Kobe Bryant. O’Neal holds averages of 24.3 PPG, 11.6 RPG, and 2.1 BPG in 216 total playoff appearances.
9. Kobe Bryant - 135 Wins (220 Games)
Just like his superstar teammate, Kobe Bryant had incredible playoff success with the Los Angeles Lakers. Unlike Shaq though, Bryant never joined up with other teams and played every season of his career with the Purple and Gold. In 220 total games, Kobe averaged 25.6 PPG, 5.1 RPG, and 4.7 APG in 135 total wins. Throughout Kobe’s career, he had a total of 7 Finals appearances in which he won 5 of them.
Bryant was always known as a player that never played below his normal level in the postseason, and would take his play to another level on most occasions. Barring Game 7 against the Phoenix Suns when Bryant would not take any shots, Kobe did whatever it took to win games. Facing dominant teams such as the San Antonio Spurs, Detroit Pistons, Boston Celtics, and Sacramento Kings; it is amazing how Bryant was able to have such success in his Hall of Fame career.
8. Manu Ginobili - 135 Wins (218 Games)
Considered one of Kobe Bryant’s greatest opponents, Manu Ginobili was an icon with the San Antonio Spurs teams that went head-to-head with the likes of the Los Angeles Lakers. But Ginobili did his part for 4 championship sides with the Spurs, averaging 14.0 PPG, 4.0 RPG, and 3.8 APG over his playoff career. Even if his numbers do not scream All-Star, his play certainly did.
Manu sacrificed his numbers to come off the bench for San Antonio, acting as a 6th man who would also close out games when needed. Despite playing with some other Hall of Fame stars such as Tim Duncan and Tony Parker, Manu was often relied upon to take and make big plays for his team. There is no doubt that Ginobili is a first-ballot Hall of Famer because, without the Argentinian, the Spurs do not win as many championships as they did.
7. Scottie Pippen - 136 Wins (208 Games)
Michael Jordan will surprisingly not appear on this list (he is 13th all-time in playoff wins), but his all-time great teammate will. Michael and Scottie completely dominated the NBA, capturing 6 NBA championships without ever losing a Finals appearance together. But the difference here is that Scottie joined the Houston Rockets and also the Portland Trail Blazers after his Bulls stint, where he made a couple more postseason appearances.
Scottie holds averages of 17.5 PPG, 7.6 RPG, and 5.0 APG in 208 total games. Winning an excellent 136 games, Pippen is one of the most underrated stars in NBA history because he was the sidekick to the greatest player ever. As a lockdown defender and gifted passer, Scottie was a winner of the highest order and his track record speaks for itself with and without Michael Jordan by his side.
6. Tony Parker - 137 Wins (226 Games)
Just like Manu Ginobili, Tony Parker was an invaluable piece to the San Antonio Spurs’ sides that won 4 championships with the Frenchman at the helm. Parker overcame the odds as a miniature point guard by using a mix of speed, skill, and scoring ability to help the Spurs become a dominant force in the West for years. Parker was even Finals MVP in the 2007 Finals, a series where the Spurs manhandled the Cleveland Cavaliers.
In 226 total games, Tony Paker won 137 games and had solid averages as the starting point guard. The Frenchman averaged 17.9 PPG and 5.1 APG and had an unbelievable 17 seasons worth of postseason appearances. Even if Hall of Famer Tim Duncan gets the majority of the credit as the key cog to the Spurs dynasty, they do not win without Tony Parker.
5. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar - 154 Wins (237 Games)
An all-time great player and widely regarded as the greatest center ever, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar had an incredible postseason career. Winning 154 games out of 237 appearances, the former Bucks and Lakers legend had averages of 24.3 PPG, 10.5 RPG, 3.2 APG, and 2.4 BPG. Abdul-Jabbar dominated the court on both ends of the floor, as a member of the Bucks and Lakers, capturing a total of 6 NBA titles.
Kareem won 2 Finals MVPs, one with the Bucks and one with the Lakers. Thanks to his patented skyhook, Kareem was able to play an incredible 18 seasons’ worth of postseason appearances. Even when Abdul-Jabbar got older and lost his legs, he was able to pull off the skyhook to remain effective as a championship-level player. It is likely we will not see another big man with the resume that Kareem had as a playoff performer.
4. Robert Horry - 155 Wins (244 Games)
The most accomplished role player ever, it is no coincidence that Robert Horry has 7 NBA championships as a professional. His greatest individual achievement came when he made the All-Rookie Team in 1993 by averaging 10.1 PPG and 5.0 RPG. But Horry was not a regular-season player, he was a player who shined in the playoffs. Known as “Big Shot Bob”, Horry has an incredible resume of nailing timely shots in the biggest moments.
Horry had playoff success with the Houston Rockets, winning 2 NBA championships with the team. As a stretch-forward who would come up in big moments, Horry proved to be invaluable. Robert Horry was also a valuable role player for the Los Angeles Lakers, capturing 3 straight championships with Shaq and Kobe. Of course, Horry is known for his incredible game-winner in Game 4 of the 2001 Finals. Call him lucky or call him a player that big teams want, Horry was also a part of 2 championship teams with the San Antonio Spurs.
3. Tim Duncan - 157 Wins (251 Games)
A 5-time NBA champion and the greatest power forward ever, Tim Duncan is unsurprisingly a top-3 player of all-time in terms of most wins. The Big Fundamental was simply a winning player because he would always make the right play to lead the Spurs to victory. When looking at his playoff career, Duncan holds averages of 20.6 PPG, 11.4 RPG, 3.0 APG, and 2.3 BPG. The Spurs legend has an incredible 18 seasons worth of postseason appearances over his 19 seasons.
Winning 3 Finals MVPs, Duncan also played at an elite level in his Finals appearances. But even before he got to the grandest stage of them all, he led out the likes of David Robinson, Tony Parker, and Manu Ginobili to battle every night. As Hall of Fame head coach Gregg Popovich would be the first to state, Duncan is the driving force behind the Spurs dynasty and the most accomplished postseason big man ever.
2. Derek Fisher - 161 Wins (259 Games)
It is amazing the amount of success that Derek Fisher had in his legendary career. A role player who never won any individual awards, Fisher made up for his lack of star talent with an incredible ability to nail clutch shots and be a leader on the floor. Completing in 12 playoff appearances with the Lakers, Fisher would capture 5 NBA titles alongside Kobe Bryant in Los Angeles. Fisher nailed countless big shots, but his biggest came with 0.4 seconds against the Spurs in Game 4 of the 2004 Western Conference Finals.
Fisher also had one playoff run with the Utah Jazz and another 3 seasons with the Oklahoma City Thunder before his retirement. Just like Robert Horry, Derek Fisher was not a star but had invaluable moments as a clutch player. He created an iconic partnership with Kobe Bryant in Los Angeles, and his impact goes beyond his 8.3 PPG playoff scoring average.
1. LeBron James - 174 Wins (266 Games)
The man with the most playoff wins in NBA history is the only active player on this list. The King has accumulated an incredible 174 playoff wins out of 266 games, thanks to the star’s incredible longevity and dominance on an NBA court. James holds averages of 28.7 PPG, 9.0 RPG, and 7.2 APG in 15 seasons worth of postseason appearances with the Cavaliers, Heat, and Lakers. A 4-time NBA champion and 4-time Finals MVP, LeBron James experienced everything in the playoffs from disappointing losses and meltdowns to unfathomable comebacks.
Earlier on in his career with Cleveland, LeBron never had championship success other than the 2007 Finals appearance. But with the Heat, The King made 4 Finals appearances and won 2 NBA titles. With his second stint with the Cavs, LeBron led his team from a 1-3 deficit to win championship #3. Of course, James won his 4th title with the Lakers in 2020. As yet another player who was a Laker, LeBron James has a chance to continue building his lead from the rest of the pack in terms of playoff victories. We will likely never see a player complete 19 seasons at a superstar level again, so this record could be LeBron’s forever.