Have you ever wondered who has the top biggest hands among NBA players?
Having a big hand in the NBA is quite an excellent advantage for the player. Although having a big hand is not that crucial, it adds to the merits and effects while passing, shooting, and handling the ball.
Playing basketball is all about how well a player can control the ball. Therefore, the hand size in NBA is measured in two parts, i.e., hand part and hand span.
The hand length is measured from the base of the palm to the tip of the middle finger. At the same time, the hand span is from the tip of the thump to the end of the little finger when the hand is outstretched.
This article will take a look at some of the biggest hands in NBA history. The hand length and the hand span of the player are taken into consideration while preparing this list.
So without any further delay, let us together explore who has the biggest hands in NBA history.
Biggest Hands in NBA History
Before exploring the details of the list, let us take a quick preview of the table.
|1. Boban Marjanovic||Center|
|2. Shaquille O’Neal||Center|
|3. Giannis Antekokounmpo||Power forward / Small forward|
|4. Greg Smith||Power forward / Center|
|5. Connie Hawkins||Power forward / Center|
|6. Noah Vonleh||Power forward / Center|
|7. Julius Erving||Small Forward|
|8. Michael Jordan||Shooting Guard / Small Forward|
|9. Kawhi Leonard||Small Forward|
|10. Wilt Chamberlain Center||Center|
1. Boban Marjanovic
- Hand size: 10.75 inches (hand length) and 12 inches (hand span)
- Height: 7’3″
- Weight: 290 lbs
We will start this off with the top biggest hands in the NBA, i.e., Boban Marjanovic. Marjanovic is a 34 year-old Serbian player currently playing for the Dallas Maverick.
He made his first NBA debut with the San Antonio Spurs in 2015 and plays for the Serbian national basketball team.
Marjanovich could hold the record for the unofficial title for the biggest hands in NBA history. Although his hands have never been officially measured, we can estimate his hand size based on photos of Marjanovich compared to the hands of other NBA players.
Compared to the hand size of the average player of his height, Marjanovich’s hand length is 14% longer. His large hands have even birthed the hilarious Reddit thread called “Boban holding things.”
His measure is perceived as 12-12.5 range close to Sultan Kosen, who has the biggest hand size. Marjanovich is a decent scorer with a field goal percentage is 58%.
2. Shaquille O’Neal
- Hand size: 10.25 inches (hand length) and 12 inches (hand span)
- Height: 7’1″
- Weight: 325 lbs
The next on our list of the top biggest hands in the NBA is one of the stars of the NBA, Shaquille O’Neal. Nicknamed “Shaq,” he is a 50 year old former NBA player.
Shaq is regarded as one of the greatest basketball players and centers of all time. There is a belief that no hand size is too large to prevent O’Neal from throwing a succeeding free throw.
In the case of Shaq also, his hands have not been measured officially. However, he played a match against Kawhi Leonard, and as a result, his hands are considered to be 10.25 inches in length and 12 inches in width.
Given that he wore a shoe size 22, one can guess his hands would also be massive. However, his giant hands may give him an advantage, few points that O’Neal’s poor throw is also because his hands are too big for the ball.
3. Giannis Antetokounmpo
- Hand size: 9.85 inches (hand length) and 12 inches (hand span)
- Height: 6’11”
- Weight: 242 lbs
On our third rank is the reigning NBA MVP, Giannis Antetokounmpo. The 27 year old Greek professional player is a part of the Milwaukee Bucks team roster. He made his debut in 2013.
Antetokounmpo has earned the nickname “Greek Freak” for extraordinary hand size, speed, and ball-handling skills. Compared to other average players, his hand span is 20% wider, and his hand length is 9%.
Since 2017, Antetokounmpo has had a remarkable achievement and has been on the NBA All-Star roster five times in a row.
Many speculate that Antetokounmpo’s measurement is also a part of his growing progression to superstardom.
In the 2021 season, he won NBA champion, NBA Finals MVP, NBA All-Star Game MVP, and All-NBA First Team.
4. Greg Smith
- Hand size: 9.8 inches (hand length) and 12 inches (hand span)
- Height: 6’11”
- Weight: 251 lbs
Greg Smith is a 31 year-old basketball player for Mineros de Zacatecas of the Liga Nacional de Baloncesto Professional (LNBP).
Smith’s hand measurements are 9% longer and 21% wider than the average player of his height. Although he has one of the biggest hands in the NBA, it hasn’t contributed much to his career.
He was undrafted in the 2011 NBA draft but later signed with the Houston Rockets. However, he was later waived by the Rockets after appearing in two preseasons.
Smith has frequently changed teams because of his erratic form. His career is not very stable. In 2011, Smith recorded the biggest hands in the 2011 combine.
5. Connie Hawkins
- Hand size: 10.5 inches (hand length) and 11 inches (hand span)
- Height: 6’8″
- Weight: 210 lbs
Connie Hawkins is a legend of the New York City playground. Born on July 17, 1942, in Brooklyn, New York, Hawkins was a professional basketball player who only played seven seasons in NBA.
Hawkins’s hands were measured to be 18% longer in length and 13% wider than the other average-height players. In addition, his arm’s length is the largest in NBA history.
Regarded as an exceptionally gifted baller, Hawkins’s arm length and hand size worked to his advantage.
Even though Hawkins only played seven seasons, his impressive performance in American Basketball League (ABL) and American Basketball Association (AMA) enshrined him in the Basketball Hall of Fame.
Hawkins was a four-time NBA All-Star (1970-1973) and All-NBA First team (1970). He passed away on October 6, 2017.
6. Noah Vonleh
- Hand size: 9.75 inches (hand length) and 11.75 inches (hand span)
- Height: 6’10”
- Weight: 257 lbs
The next NBA player on our list of top biggest hands in the NBA is Noah Vonleh. This 27 year old American professional basketball player is currently playing for the Shanghai Sharks of the Chinese Basketball Association (CBA).
With a hand length of 9.75 inches and 11.75 inches hand span, Vonleh was in the lead in the 2014 NBA draft.
The Charlotte Hornets drafted Vonleh as the ninth overall pick in the 2014 NBA draft. His hand size is 8% longer and 21% wider compared to the average height player.
Vonleh’s hands are truly impressive, but he has changed six different teams over the six years of his professional career.
This proves that not everyone with massive hands has a successful career in the league.
7. Julius Erving
Hand size: 9.5 inches (hand length) and 11.75 inches (hand span)
Weight: 210 lbs
Julius Erving is a former American professional basketball player. Now 72 year old, he is regarded as one of the most influential basketball players of the time.
The Milwaukee Bucks picked him 12th overall in the first round of the 1972 NBA draft.
Nicknamed “Dr. J,” aside from having one of the biggest hands in NBA history, he is also one of the greatest basketball dunkers in NBA history. His signature cradle dunk was even named “rock the baby.”
Erving’s hand measurement was 8% longer in length and 24% wider compared to the average height players. His control and arm speed while palming the ball are some of the best in NBA history.
However, his hand size was not measured by the league and is still a topic of debate for many. In Erving’s case, his hand size played a very significant role in his basketball career success.
In 1993, he was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame and named on the NBA’s 50th Anniversary All-Time team.
8. Michael Jordan
- Hand size: 9.75 inches (hand length) and 11.375 inches (hand span)
- Height: 6’6″
- Weight: 216 lbs
Any fan of the NBA will agree that Michael Jordan is one of the greatest players in NBA history. Nicknamed “MJ,” he was born on February 17, 1963, and is a former basketball player in the NBA.
The Chicago Bulls drafted MJ as the third overall pick of the 1984 NBA draft. He had a 15-season career in NBA and has won the title six times.
MJ is an influential figure; he is also a global icon who popularized the NBA in the 1980s and 1990s.
Compared to his hand size, his feet were relatively smaller. However, his hands were 12% longer and 21% wider than the other average-height player.
There is no doubt about Jordan’s Airness power and genius technique; however, his hand size also played a massive part in his success.
He could easily glide through the air palming the ball in one hand while deceiving defenders with a beautiful ball fake of his.
Jordan has a career regular-season scoring average of 30.12 points per game and a career playoff scoring average of 33.45 points per game.
9. Kawhi Leonard
- Hand size: 9.75 inches (hand length) and 11.25 inches (hand span)
- Height: 6’7″
- Weight: 225 lbs
Nicknamed the “Claw” or “Klaw,” Kawhi Leonard is famously known for his ball-hawking skills. 31 year old Leonard is a professional NBA player for the Los Angeles Clippers.
The Indiana Pacers drafted him as the 15th overall pick in the 2011 NBA draft. He was named the NBA Finals MVP twice and won the defensive player of the year award in 2015 and 2016.
Leonard’s hand size is 11% longer and 18% wider than the average height player. His large hand size plays a crucial part in his famous ball-hawking skills.
Not everything can be credited to his hand size; his dedication and skill set has helped Lenord shoot to stardom today.
10. Wilt Chamberlain
- Hand size: 9.5 inches (hand length) and 11.5 inches (hand span)
- Height: 7’1″
- Weight: 275 lbs
We will close off this list with the big dipper, Wilt Chamberlain. Born on August 21, 1936, Chamberlain is widely regarded as one of the greatest players in NBA history. He made his NBA debut with the Philadelphia Warriors in 1959.
Also famously nicknamed “Goliath” and “Wilt the stilt,” this 7-foot-tall player with one of the big hand sizes helped him secure his position in the NBA. Chamberlain was also one of the most dominant players in the NBA.
Chamberlain’s hand size is 3.3% longer in length and 15% wider in width than the average player of his height.
The Goliath of the NBA holds multiple NBA regular-season records in scoring, rebounding, and durability categories. In addition, he is the only player in the history of the NBA to score 100 points in a single NBA game.
The hand size does not always affect the player’s skill sets or helps them secure their position in the NBA league.
However, there is no denying that having huge hands adds to the benefits of the player. Flexibility, athleticism, and technique also play a crucial part.