Published By: Akashdeep

The Greatest NBA Duo's of All Time

NBA duos are often what separate great dynasties from one-off winners!

The NBA has witnessed numerous iconic duos significantly impacting its rich history. These dynamic tandems have not only reshaped the style of play in basketball but have also achieved unparalleled success. So, with that in mind, let's look at the greatest NBA duos of all time!

Scottie and MJ

When Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen took the court together, you knew you were in for a challenge; deterring them wouldn't be easy! This challenge wasn't a frequent occurrence. In the late 1980s, only the Detroit Pistons and the Boston Celtics seemed capable of impeding the Chicago Bulls. Once they overcame these formidable opponents, victory became a consistent theme. Pippen was precisely what Jordan needed. Despite Jordan's stats resembling those from the 1960s, team success remained elusive against genuine contenders. However, with Pippen joining the team and Jordan establishing chemistry with him, the key to the Bulls' championship success was found.

Jordan's versatile scoring, all-around contributions, and Pippen's exceptional perimeter defence created an unstoppable duo throughout the 1990s. Together, they secured six titles, achieving two remarkable three-peats. The potential for eight consecutive titles lingered had Jordan not retired!

Magic and Kareem 

Having exceptional chemistry with a point guard named Magic Johnson is inevitable. Standing tall at 6'9" with court awareness that could rival Jason Kidd, Johnson orchestrated one of the league's most efficient offences, guiding his team to multiple titles throughout the 1980s. The presence of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, a dominant force in the post, only enhanced Johnson's capabilities as he perfectly utilised the big man, delivering scores that set him apart from any other point guard. Abdul-Jabbar may have experienced a decline in stats after moving from Milwaukee to Los Angeles, but the allure of winning titles in his first season alongside Johnson as the floor general overshadowed any statistical concerns.

The Lakers became nearly unstoppable with Magic's unprecedented on-court feats and Abdul-Jabbar's imposing 7'2" presence in the paint. This dynamic duo secured five titles between 1980 and 1988, with four Finals MVPs distributed between the two superstars.

Shaq and Kobe

Their ending wasn't as harmonious as we hoped, and their time together witnessed its fair share of tumultuous moments, yet there's no denying the incredibly prolific and dynamic duo that Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O'Neal formed in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Already a standout in Orlando, Shaquille O'Neal arrived in Los Angeles after winning a scoring title in his third year and leading the young team to a title appearance.

His dominant play continued, winning three championships and an MVP award during the best years of his career. O'Neal's imposing presence in the post, where no single centre could effectively guard him, created ample opportunities for Bryant to showcase his skills. While O'Neal averaged over 25 points per game, Bryant began to come on his own, contributing up to 30 points per game.

Together, they secured three consecutive titles, triumphing over the Indiana Pacers, Philadelphia 76ers, and New Jersey Nets. Their 2001 title run was awe-inspiring, finishing 15-1, with the only loss in the finals attributed to a stellar 48-point performance from Allen Iverson.

By showcasing outstanding skills on the court and securing numerous championships, these duos have transcended into iconic figures within the realm of sports. Examining the premier duos in NBA history explores the enduring partnerships that have captivated fans and played a pivotal role in shaping the league's legacy.