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Top 10 NBA Stars Who Played Other Sports

Fadeaway World

Fadeaway World

If you’re athletic, chances are you’re pretty good in more than just one sport, and most guys try their luck in more than one discipline during their middle school and high school years, finally choosing the one where they have the most chance to succeed, to make money or just the one they like the most.

Over the course of the years, we’ve seen a lot of multisport athletes, being perhaps Russell Wilson, Johnny Manziel and Tim Tebow the most recent. In fact, several NBA players have also played other sports besides basketball, and today we’ll give you a list of the top 10 NBA players who also thrived in other disciplines, and some of them may actually surprise you.

Stephen Curry

Warriors Stephen Curry throws a baseball to a fan after the Atlanta Braves fell to the San Francisco Giants 4-2 at AT&T Park in San Francisco, Calif., on Friday, May 29, 2015.

Warriors Stephen Curry throws a baseball to a fan after the Atlanta Braves fell to the San Francisco Giants 4-2 at AT&T Park in San Francisco, Calif., on Friday, May 29, 2015.

Coming from a family of athletes, it’s no surprise at all that the 2-time MVP spent his entire life trying his luck in several sports, and before becoming the best three-point shooter in NBA history, Curry was also a very good football player, as well as playing baseball and soccer during his youth.

Pat Riley


The former coach, player and now general manager of the Miami Heat was also a multi-sport athlete way back in the day, and as a matter of fact, he was actually drafted by the Dallas Cowboys as a wide receiver the very same year he was selected by the San Diego Rockets in the 1967 NBA Draft.

Wilt Chamberlain

wilt chamberlain

Few people actually know that the Big Dipper was also a volleyball player, although he obviously thrived the most as one of the greatest players in the history of basketball. On top of that, he did some shot put, competed in high jump and also ran track.

John Havlicek


Before being a very successful NBA player, Havlicek was actually a part of the Cleveland Browns training camp way back in 1962 and looking at the Browns nowadays, there’s absolutely no doubt that he made the right choice, or at least he should be grateful for not being that good in Football, I guess.

Michael Jordan


As you all know, the greatest player in the history of the game, and a top 3 athlete in the history of the world, maybe alongside Muhammad Ali and Roger Federer, retired after winning 3 championships with the Chicago Bulls to pursue a career in baseball, but thank god he made a historic comeback to win 3 more rings.

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Nate Robinson


Nate the Great is known for being one of the most athletic and strong players in the NBA over the last decade despite his (lack of) height, and before becoming a Slam Dunk champion and one of the most beloved guys wherever he went, he played football as a cornerback, a sport more suited for his physique.

Tim Duncan


This may shock a couple of guys, but before being one of the greatest two-way players in NBA history, the Virgin Islands native was a terrific swimmer, and he was even poised to reach the 1992 Olympics as a swimmer before his training ground was destroyed by a hurricane.

Danny Ainge


Before having a successful career as a player and now as the brains behind the Boston Celtics, Ainge also pursued a career in baseball, being drafted by the Toronto Blue Jays while he was still in college, playing mostly as a second baseman, spending 3 full seasons as a baseball player before being drafted by the Celtics in 1981.

LeBron James

Sep 8, 2013; Arlington, TX, USA; Miami Heat guard LeBron James throws a football on the sidelines of the game  between the Dallas Cowboys and the New York Giants at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports ORG XMIT: USATSI-132582 ORIG FILE ID:  20130908_mbr_sh2_144.JPG

Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Even if LeBron has been very vocal about the fact that he “wouldn’t let his sons play football”, he was a football player himself, playing tight end, as well as obviously being a standout talent in basketball. As a matter of fact, he’s made a lot of jokes stating that he’d like to play one game at TE for his beloved Dallas Cowboys.

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Allen Iverson


If you think Iverson was talented at basketball, you should’ve seen him playing football. This guy was practically an entire team, playing as a defensive back, running back, kick returner and even freaking quarterback, leading his basketball and football high school teams to championships (and winning awards in both disciplines), and becoming the ultimate multi-sport athlete.