Great players of all time have some of the best resumes we’ve ever seen, and it seems like we get a special talent every few years. Each era has created some amazing players who dominate the game, and that is the case today. Individual awards and team honors often dictate a player’s success in the league and give fans and members of the media unlimited talking points when comparing careers.
Winning the Player of the Season award is the most important individual award in the regular season for a singles player, although it pales in comparison to winning a championship at the end of the year. While winning a title should be the most important thing in a player’s season, getting a championship is arguably an even tougher feat. But it is very impressive for a player to win the MVP title and the NBA Championship so many times, specifically winning at least four championships and at least two MVP awards.
It has only fallen a few times, with only a handful of players having managed to achieve this feat throughout NBA history. In fact, only 7 players in NBA history have managed to have at least 2 MVPs and 4 NBA championships in their career, which is an incredible fact considering that fewer than 10 Superstars have resumed like this. Without further ado, here are the only players in NBA history to have been named Player of the Year twice and the NBA title four times in their careers.
Stephen Curry – 4 Championships, 2 Best Player Awards
Championship seasons: 2014-15, 2016-17, 2017-18, 2021-22
MVP Seasons: 2014-15, 2015-16
The newest member of the all-time roster with no less than 4 NBA championships and 2 Most Valuable Player awards, Stephen Curry joined the elite company after the 2022 NBA Finals. The greatest shooter of all time, Steve took control of his destiny by carving his way to the top of the league, thanks to his outstanding offensive skills and selflessness. With his fourth championship and first World Cup to his name, Steve deserves the praise he will receive over the next few months. There is no doubt that Curry is also Mr. Golden State because no player has had the influence that rule has.
Curry may have won two championships through Kevin Durant’s once-in-a-lifetime decision to join a title contender, but he’s won two more times without the ever-grossing substitute. Base is the best shooter ever, but she didn’t mind taking a back seat when necessary, as we saw in the 2015 Finals when he didn’t win the MVP in the Finals and also in the 2017 and 2018 seasons when KD was on the roster. With a unanimous MVP award to his name and his game-changing reputation, Steph is a valued member of this elite list.
Tim Duncan – 5 Championships, 2 Best Player Awards
Championship seasons: 1998-99, 2002-03, 2004-05, 2006-07, 2013-14
Player of the Seasons: 2001-02, 2002-03
The greatest power forward of all time, Tim Duncan, won five championships and two San Antonio Spurs MVP awards. Big Fundamental affected the paint better than any forward power ever as he made 15 All-Defensive Teams and also finished his career with an average of 19.0 PPG. Duncan’s biography is full of individual and team accolades as he was the cornerstone of the Spurs dynasty, which lasted nearly two decades. As a cornerstone of the San Antonio sport, Duncan has consistently accomplished the task during his career.
It’s amazing how other superpower attackers of all time Duncan is, including Karl Malone, Charles Barkley and Giannis Antetokounmpo among others, and it’s no surprise that he’s a member of the list of players with at least 4 championships and 2 MVP awards. Timmy retired only 6 years ago, and forming his 15th All-Star team at the age of 38 was a great way to end a career that will go down in the history books. Only three other players on this list have more championships than the legendary Tottenham man.
LeBron James – 4 Championships and 4 Best Player Awards
Championship seasons: 2011-12, 2012-13, 2015-16, 2019-20
MVP Seasons: 2008-09, 2009-10, 2011-12, 2012-13
LeBron James is one of the greatest players in NBA history and has also played on some great teams of all time. James is arguably the player with the highest basketball IQ in NBA history and influences the game on every level. A 4-time NBA champion and 4-time Finalist, James has been part of some all-time great teams and has some Hall of Fame teammates. No player has made a career more for himself than James did for himself, as he started the trend of recruiting star players and also controlling what franchises do. In many ways, LeBron James changed the landscape of sports.
But on the court, the king was a standout player. He has earned 4 titles, 4 Finals MVPs, and 4 MVP Awards during his career. His championships came with three different franchises (Cleveland Cavaliers, Miami Heat, Los Angeles Lakers) while MVP awards came with the Cavaliers and Heat. LeBron is widely regarded as the top 5 player of all time due to his incredible longevity and ability to control the match with his passing, which is the reason for his massive individual and collective success. Time will tell if James can ever win a fifth championship because he can start climbing in every ranking ever if that happens.
Magic Johnson – 5 Championships, 3 Best Player Awards
Championship seasons: 1979-80, 1981-82, 1984-85, 1986-1987, 1987-88
Player of the Seasons: 1986-87, 1988-89, 1989-90
Magic is the best keeper ever, and he’s not too close. He was a great goalkeeper with perfect guarding skills, including dribbling and passing. He was unstoppable at the break and was one of the best players in the league during each of the five episodes of the NBA Championship. For many Lakers fans, Magic is absolutely the best to wear Purple and Gold too, which is a nice compliment considering the likes of Kobe Bryant, Jerry West, and Shaquille O’Neal all played for the franchise. We have yet to see a more magical point guard than the great Irvin Johnson because his leadership of the land and the game industry were second to none.
It would be hard for any Ranger to top the mighty Magic Johnson. He has 3 best players in the finals, 3 players in the finals, and 12 picks for all stars. Magic has effectively changed the game and we haven’t seen a better sentinel and probably never will. He’s just a different breed, and as a top player who has competed in point guard, he’s only behind three other players in total leagues on this list. The King of the 80’s, Magic won 5 amazing titles and 3 Player of the Year awards.
Michael Jordan – 6 Championships and 5 Most Valuable Player Awards
Championship seasons: 1990-1991, 1991-92, 1992-93, 1995-96, 1996-97, 1997-98
Player of the Season: 1987-88, 1990-91, 1991-92, 1995-96, 1997-98
Considered the greatest basketball player and arguably the most exciting athlete in the sport, Michael Jordan has won 6 NBA titles in 6 Finals with the Chicago Bulls. Air Jordan averaged 33.6 PPG, 6.0 RPG and 6.0 APG in 35 games during its World Cup career. Along with Scottie Pippen, Jordan formed the best duo in NBA history as they never played a Game 7 together on the biggest stage of them all.
Whether it’s making clutch jumps or creating clutch games for others, Jordan has always finished his opponents in the finals. Michael Jordan has achieved a lot in his NBA career, from 10 titles recorded to 5 MVP awards, but his 6-0 Finals record with 6 Finals MVPs is his greatest achievement. MJ probably should have won over 5 MVPs, because he was the best player in the game by the junior season. However, his achievements are truly extraordinary as he lags behind Karim in the overall Player of the Year awards.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar – 6 Championships and 6 Best Player Awards
Championship seasons: 1970-71, 1979-80, 1981-82, 1984-85, 1986-87, 1987-88
Player of the Year seasons: 1970-71, 1971-72, 1973-74, 1975-76, 1976-77, 1979-80
Quite possibly the most accomplished and talented bi-directional who has ever played the game, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar has claimed 6 NBA titles in 10 Finals. The legendary Bucks and Lakers champ played in 56 finals, averaging 23.5 PPG, 9.1 RPG and 3.2 APG in his career in Finals. With his skyhawk shot and defensive ability, Karim has proven to be a dominant player in the post-season.
His 6 NBA Championships fit in well with 6 MVP awards and 2 MVPs in the World Cup Finals as the previous first overall pick finds himself in an all-time great position. Other than Bill Russell’s 11 episodes and Wilt Chamberlain’s dreaded stats (100 points, 50.4 PPG in one season), no position compares to Abdul-Jabbar in overall individual and group awards. Looking back at his college days in particular, Karim is unique, topping the list of players with at least 4 championships and 2 best player awards.
Bill Russell – 11 Championships, 5 Most Valuable Player Awards
Championship seasons: 1956-57, 1958-59, 1959-60, 1960-61, 1961-62, 1962-63, 1963-64, 1964-65, 1965-66, 1967-68, 1968-69
Player of the Season: 1957-58, 1960-61, 1961-62, 1962-63, 1964-65
The greatest winner in NBA history, Bill Russell earned an incredible 11 championships during his Hall of Fame career. The quarterback was not considered a stellar attacking player, but his leadership and defensive influence made him one of the most dominant winners of all time. In 12 NBA Finals, Russell went 11-1. The Boston Celtics are associated with the Lakers with the most titles in NBA history, and the big man’s championships have a big role in that because they have 11 out of 17 episodes.
Armed with elite jumping and natural blocking skills, Bill Russell has always found a way to lead the Celtics past their opponents in an era when there were very few teams. That was never held against Russell because winning the Competitive League as many times as he did is exceptional. With 5 MVP awards to his name, Russell is a top 10 player of all time, and his resume will stand the test of time in regards to both individual and team awards.