NBA Players (Longest and Shortest) Wingspan: Role & Importance of Wingspan in Basketball

Despite the fact, that in past decades “Wingspan” in basketball has been an overlooked parameter, However, the concept of “Wingspan measurement” of players has gained paramount significance after being assertively mentioned in a General, authored by Tesla Monson(Ph.D.), which emphasized on the essence of connection between “Wingspan and the athletic ability of the player”.

Wingspan collectively covers the prospect of calculating the player’s “height, length, and stretchiness” of the arm. The wingspan is regarded as a vital indicator for figuring out athletic potential, by deducing that a player’s Long wingspan is more likely to block the shots, jump higher, grab rebounds, counter back at defenders, and tend to be in the frontcourt.

Apex index, another term for Wingspan, defines the ratio of the arm span to the height of a player. However, the wingspan isn’t a “hard and fast” rule to get selected for a team, as we see numerable pro players already in basketball, with diverse wingspan measures.

Wingspan in the basketball

Importance & Benefits of NBA Player’s Wingspan

Monson’s study revealed the physical attribute of the “wingspan-to-height ratios”, that the top players of the NBA have relatively wider arm spans than their height. Hence It’s intended to say that the “NBA players with wider arm spans are considered to be the higher picks in the draft”.

The recognition of the wingspan is due to the role it plays by enabling the players to play crucial block shots, easily grab rebounds, steal passes and shoot over defenders. It’s helpful in deflecting shots against the opponent and preventing them to reach the hoop, defending passes by grabbing the ball quickly with their wider arms and averting passing, and blocking shots by their jumps with taller height.

Importance & Benefits of NBA Player’s Wingspan

Thus, Needless to say, a longer wide span in basketball is a determinant of success. According to Monson’s analysis, Kevin Durant had the biggest arm span to height ratio.

How to Calculate Wingspan in Basketball?

To calculate the wingspan, follow the below steps:

1. Stand sharply straight, with the vertical back athletic posture.

2. Spread your arms in the horizontal direction each, in such a linear manner, that the hands must be in-parallel to your shoulders. 

3. Start measuring from the fingertips of one hand to the end point of another hand’s fingertips.

4. The reading you get in the inches is your total wingspan of yours.

How to Calculate Wingspan in Basketball

Contrary to the tall players having the advantage of their physic and height, short players may become the “favorites” of marvel coaches for their wider wingspan.

Who Has the Longest Wingspan in NBA History?

The longest wingspan in NBA history is entitled to Manute Bol, with the 8-foot-6 wingspan and height of 7-foot-7.

Who Has the Shortest Wingspan in NBA History?

The shortest wingspan in NBA history belongs to Shane Larkin and J. J. Barea, who boasted a net of 5’10.75″ wingspan.

Who Has the Longest Wingspan in the NBA? NBA Players With Largest Wingspan

Currently, Mo Bamba and Boban Marjanović, both stand at a 7-foot-10 wider wingspan. The rest descending lists include:

  • Rudy Gobert: 7-foot-8.5
  • Udoka Azubuike: 7-foot-7.25
  • Hassan Whiteside: 7-foot-7
  • Bol Bol: 7-foot-7 
  • Mark Williams: 7-foot-6.5
  • Andre Drummond: 7-foot-6.25
  • Thomas Bryant: 7-foot-6
  • DeAndre Jordan: 7-foot-6
  • Deandre Ayton: 7-foot-6
  • JaVale McGee: 7-foot-6
  • Chet Holmgren: 7-foot-6
  • Kristaps Porzingis: 7-foot-6
  • DeMarcus Cousins: 7-foot-5.75

Who Has the Shortest Wingspan in the NBA? NBA Players With Smallest Wingspan

On the counter side, the below 10 players own the official shortest wingspan measures, 5 holding on the same level.

  • Markus Howard: 6-foot-0.25
  • Sharife Cooper: 6-foot-1
  • Isaiah Thomas: 6-foot-1.75
  • Patty Mills: 6-foot-2
  • Kyle Lowry: 6-foot-2
  • Fred VanVleet: 6-foot-2
  • Raul Neto: 6-foot-2
  • T.J. McConnell: 6-foot-2
  • Trae Young: 6-foot-3
  • Malachi Flynn: 6-foot-3

NBA Longest Wingspan by Position:

In accordance with the playing position on the court, athletes do hold the record for their longest wing spread. The various positions include:

1. At Point Guard:

      Reggie Jackson marks history with a Wingspan of 7’0 & Height of 6’3.

2. Shooting guard Position:

     Where Donavan Mitchel registered his Wingspan of 6’10 & Height of 6’1.

3. Small Forward:

      Talen Horton Tucker: Wingspan – 7’1.25 & Height – 6’4

4. Power forward Position:

      Kevin Durant filled the record with his Wingspan – 7’5 & Height – 6’10.

5. At Center:

      Rudy Gobert has the largest Wingspan – 7’8.5 & Height – of 7’1.

Other Famous Basketball Players – Top 15 NBA Longest Popular Players Wingspan:

Players NameWingspan(Feet-To-Inches)Height(Feet-To-Inches)
Tacko Fall8’4″7’5″
Bol Bol7’6.87’2
Anthony Davis7′ 6″6’10”
Kevin Durant7′ 5″6’10”
Giannis Antetokounmpo7′ 3″6’11”
Kawhi Leonard7’3″6’7″
LeBron James7.0”6’9”
Michael Jordan6’11”6’6″
James Harden6’11”6’5″
Rajon Rondo6′ 9″6’1″
Jimmy Butler6′ 8″6’7″
Russel Westbrook’s6’8″6’3″
Damian Lillard6’8″6′ 2″
Derrick Rose6’8″6′ 2″
Stephen Curry6’4″6’3″

Steve’s Statement About Wingspan:

A renowned player Steve Kerr, once stated: “It’s legit. It’s much more important than your height,” Kerr said. “If your wingspan is more than your height, that’s kind of abnormal. Most of us have the same wingspan as our height. That’s kind of a rule of thumb. A lot of basketball players don’t, though, they have wider wingspans. And they’re able to get their hands on balls or shots or loose balls, I’m a big believer in that”.

The Effect of Wingspan on Shooting and Offensive Proficiency:

The logic of Wingspan impacting the player’s performance is pretty simple to understand. The longer the arms of the player, the more space they can cover resulting in quick grabbing of the ball. Additionally, a longer wingspan optimistically affects a wider defending area to prevent the ball from reaching the hoop and creating obstacles by their wider arm spread making it difficult for the offensive players to pass the ball to their teammates. Another perk includes more passing lanes, hence can vertically get closer to the basket.

Needless to say, Wingspan is one of the physical KEY attributes that bolster a team’s defense and increases the overall proficiency leading to team-winning performance.

NBA Players’ Vertical Leap Measurements:

As much as the wingspan plays the role to grab the ball, the Vertical leap plays the role to make a shot. Jumping is fundamental to basketball. A higher vertical jump may be considered a key factor in either dunking a person or getting far closer to the hoop, resulting in a confirmed bucket.

The vertical jump is elemental to decide the defense potential of a player. It comprehends whether the player is capable of best block shots, intercepting high passes, and preventing the opponent from getting rebound. Michael Jordan’s historic free-throw line dunk is surely an unforgettable one, that covered the whole fifteen feet to the basket in one leap. See the below video to watch top 10 wingspan.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What’s the normal wingspan in NBA?

An average wingspan in NBA varies from 6’6″ to 6’10,” and height is 6’8″tall.

What is Rajon Rondo’s wingspan?

2.06m is Rajon Rondo’s wingspan.

How long is Steph Curry’s wingspan?

Steph Curry’s wingspan is recorded as 1.92m. 

What is the average man’s wingspan?

An average person wingspan is 2 inches longer than his height. That is, a person with 6 feet height has the wingspan of 6 feet,2 inches.

Who is currently the tallest player in the NBA?

Tacko fall is currently the tallest player in the NBA, with the height of 7’5. In the ongoing season, Tacko Fall will be joining the Utah Jazz’ Las Vegas Summer League.


If you are a basketball fanatic and desire to be a part of the professional NBA league, I would recommend you instantly measure your wingspan and start practicing accordingly, to grasp the command of dunking, dribbling, passing, and shooting.

However, as prior mentioned, the Largest wingspan is not a hardcore rule to be get selected for the team, but rather just a bonus. So keep focused and dedicated to the practice in order to get a chance on your capabilities certainly.

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