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Bill Sharman (player), Joe Brennann, Emil S. Liston, Bill Russell (pictured), Robert Vandivier.

Vandivier's career peaked in Franklin (Ind.). Liston was a pal of Doc Naismith, though he earned his Hall status as a builder at the college level. Brennann starred before the Depression in six leagues you probably never heard of. Sharman, the great Celtics shooter, would return in 2004 for his coaching. In other words, worthy as those guys were, they're not on this list without Russell, whose 11 championship rings dwarf all runners-up as the greatest winner in team sports history.

Text: Steve Aschburner/SI.com
Photo: John G. Zimmerman/SI

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