Best Defensive Players In NBA: Top 5 All Defensive Teams In 2021-23 Season is an informative blog for readers. The products in the article contain affiliate marketing links. We may receive a small commission when you make purchases through our links. You do not need to pay any additional fees for us. See our full disclosures here

Offensive players occupy an essential position at the National Basketball Association (NBA) and spotlight the rankings. Yet, they would not be able to succeed without the best defenders.

A great defensive player can affect the entire outcome of the game. To learn about the current list of Best defensive players in NBA, read on with Scott Fujita.

Best Defensive Players In NBA For The Upcoming Season

A good offense may win matches, but perfect defense wins championships. This quote demonstrates the role of a defensive team with a franchise. Talented defensive players can smoothly execute defensive schemes to make it difficult to oppose opposing players.

Check out this NBA player defensive rating for the upcoming season below without wasting your time.

View more: Best point guards in the NBA

#1. Rudy Gobert

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Rudy Gobert 

Franchise: Utah Jazz.

Position: Center.

The NBA Defensive Player of the Year award owner in the 2021-23 season, Rudy Gobert, is at the top of the list this time. It is no wonder he led the league with 190 blocks and 720 defensive rebounds. “The Stifle Tower” has a solid foothold in the NBA, and he will surely grow in the future.

Utah Jazz’s success in the regular season is primarily attributed to this French defensive player. He contributed to a strong defense, topping the NBA player defensive rating (101.6) and 5.2 defensive win shares. It can be said that he is one of the best defensive centers of all time.

This guy has four All-Defensive teams, three NBA Defensive Player of the Year awards. And if he does not stop, then the sky is Gobert’s limit.

#2. Ben Simmons

Franchise: Philadelphia 76ers.

Position: Point guard / Power forward.

Ben Simmons is one of the best defenders today with different gameplay. Unlike Gobert, Simmons can perform well in many positions. His versatile defense and 6 ft 11 height make Simmons an excellent on-ball defender.

If you were expecting impressive stats from this defensive player, you would be disappointed. Simmons only averaged 5.6 rebounds per game, 1.6 steals per game, and 0.6 blocks per game. But these numbers don’t say it all, as this versatile defender can stop any attack.

NBA fans hope that he can win the NBA Defensive Player of the Year award in the next season.


#3. Draymond Green

Franchise: Golden State Warriors.

Position: Power forward.

Although Draymond Green’s playstyle has changed, he is still the defensive stalwart of the Warriors. This team has a pathetic defensive rating of 99.3 (the only team below 100 percent), and Green is their savior. His toughness and high basketball IQ are the two characteristics that make this star shine.

The main task of this defensive anchor is to convert and read the enemy’s movements and defensive scheme. The mission of striking and shining will be for Stephen Curry and Thompson. Last season, he averaged 8.9 assists, 1.6 steals, and 0.8 blocks per game.

Green has already won the Defensive Player of the Year award, and it wouldn’t be strange if he continues to win that award next season.

#4. Bam Adebayo

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Bam Adebayo 

Franchise: Miami Heat.

Position: Center / Power forward.

In the 2017 NBA Draft, the Miami Heat found a true gem to take its place at the defensive end. Bam Adebayo’s ability to switch to smaller defenses and block larger centers makes Miami’s defensive lineup unpredictable and unique.

Adebayo played a crucial role in the Miami Heat’s race to the NBA finals in the NBA bubble. His brilliant save with Jayson Tatum was one of the NBA playoffs’ best moments.

#5. Giannis Antetokounmpo

Franchise: Milwaukee Bucks.

Position: Power forward / Small forward.

Giannis Antetokounmpo’s physique and proportions are natural for him to become one of the greatest defensive players. The Greek Freak just won the first NBA championship of his career, and nothing can stop this MVP in the future.

With a height of 6 ft 11 and a wingspan of 7 ft 4, he covers a lot of ground, changes shots, and interrupts passing lanes effectively. His averages last season were 9.4 rebounds, 1.2 steals, and 1.1 blocks per game.

His defense led him to become the NBA defensive player of the year in the 2019-20 season, and probably more in the future.

Check out his highlights in this video.

#6. Anthony Davis

Franchise: Los Angeles Lakers.

Position: Power forward / Center.

In the season when the Los Angeles Lakers won the championship, Anthony Davis’ defensive performance made a bold mark. He’s shined again this season with his versatile five-position defense and powerful back and forth between the two ends.

The seven-time All-Star is capable of excelling in any defensive formation, and his versatile attack makes for incredible talent. LeBron James’ best sidekick could go even further.

#7. Jimmy Butler

Franchise: Miami Heat.

Position: Shooting Guard / Small Forward.

We continue with another solid two-way star of the tournament on this list. With Jimmy Butler, attacking and protecting players on the team has never been a problem.

His excellent ball movement elevates the game of turnovers. Butler has 2.1 steals and 3.5 blocks per game, leading stats in the league last season. His fearlessness makes the opponent wary.

#8. Myles Turner

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Myles Turner

Franchise: Indiana Pacers.

Position: Center.

Including this season and the brief 2021-23 season due to Myles Turner’s injury, he has led blocked shots per game for three of the four seasons of his career.

He has a lucrative lead, 49-31, past Lakers big Anthony Davis. And the intensity at which Turner competes has dripped compared to his recent encounter with three-time DPOY winner Rudy Gobert, where Turner and his Pacers teammates made it clear during and after that they had their eye on that award.

Turner is also disturbing enemy shooters with 47.9% accuracy within six feet.

#9. Jrue Holiday

Franchise: Milwaukee Bucks.

Position: Point guard / Shooting guard.

Jrue Holiday is one of the rare point guards that can work well on both court ends. He has a lot of influence on the course of the game, thanks to his excellent blocking and devastating outside shooting. Last season, Holiday averaged 1.6 steals and 0.6 blocks per game.

Efforts to build play and defense were crucial for the NBA championship to Milwaukee. This guy also participated in the All-NBA Defensive Team three times.

#10. Matisse Thybulle

Franchise: Philadelphia 76ers.

Position: Shooting guard / Small forward.

With a career block and steal rate of 4.0 and 3.7, respectively, Matisse Thybulle is an inspiration to analysts. He also excels at limiting goal percentage on the field, rushing for the ball, and messing with passing lanes.

Given more time, his defensive potential is astounding.

Frequently Asked Questions

To learn more about the NBA defensive player of the year, check it out in this section.

best defensive players in nba

Pascal Siakam 

Who Is The Most Improved Player Of The 2019-20 Season?

Pascal Siakam is the owner of this title. He can use his mobility and length to make perfect defenses. Siakam can flexibly change between harassing point guards or destroying the opposing team’s offensive behavior.

Who Is The Best Perimeter Defensive Player In NBA History?

Gary Payton is the best perimeter defender of all time. “The Glove” was also the only point guard that won the Defensive Player of the Year award.

Payton can outrun even the most skilled shooters with a height of 6 ft 4, quick hands, and extraordinary footwork. His stealing ability is also to a new level when he can put the legendary Michael Jordan in a difficult position.

Which Defensive Player Has The Most NBA Championships?

Although Bill Russell plays in an era where defensive stats are not yet universal, the achievements and influence of this elite defender are undeniable. This legendary defensive player only scored 15.1 points per game, but Russell is still a nightmare with opposing offenses.

Bill Russell’s defensive win rate is 133.64, the highest in NBA history. It is also one of the reasons why he owns a massive number of rings, 11 NBA championships.

Who Is The Best Off-Ball Defensive Player In NBA History?

Hakeem Olajuwon has a great off-ball defense ability. He challenges powerful aerial shots but is also 9th correct for overall steals. Olajuwon had several seasons where he averaged 2-plus steals and 3-plus blocks.

Other prominent faces include legendary names like Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, LeBron James, Ben Wallace, and Wilt Chamberlain.

Michael Jordan ranked no.1 in most blocked shots for guards.

Who Is The All-Time Steals Leader In League’s History?

John Stockton is the master of the steals area among defensive NBA players. He has racked up 3,265 steals in his career. Stockton is far ahead of runner-up Jason Kidd with 700 steals.

He is also five times shortlisted for All-Defensive Team selection.

Final Thoughts

Playing defense is an art, and a defensive player is a skilled artist. They defend the attacking formation, execute the passing lanes, help lower the double-team and box the opposing stars. Without the greatest defenders, the situation of the match would be highly chaotic.

Hopefully, we’ll see other outstanding all-defensive teams in the future.

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