A Brief Rant About Height Fraud in the NBA

The guy on the left is listed at 6'1" (and is likely closer to 6'0"). The guy on the right is listed at 6'3".

I know that I am pretty much the only person who thinks about stuff like this, but I'm going to rant about it anyways: how the heck does the NBA get away with so much height fraud?!

In a sport where so much depends upon height, you'd think that they'd get their numbers straight. But no. It's entirely the opposite.

Usually, heights in the NBA are boosted by around two inches. Most fans are fine with this, hiding behind the age old adage that players "play with shoes on so it doesn't matter." BUT IT DOES!

Sure, this excuse would be fine if every player listed their height with shoes on. But they don't. So what is the result? You have true 6'11" guys like Kevin Garnett towering over supposed 6'10" players like Blake Griffin and Kevin Love (both of whom are more like 6'8" at best).

Then you have even more blatant example of height fraud, like Steve Nash at 6'3" when he's likely only scraping 6'0". Or 6'4.5" Kobe being listed at 6'7" a few years back. Or even worse, 6'9" dudes like Dwight Howard being listed at 6'11" and described as "7 footers" by overly-exuberant announcers.

What is the significance of all of this besides giving me the opportunity to rant? I just think accuracy and attention to detail matters. You wouldn't give your average 5'9" dude a pass if he claimed that he was 6'0", so the same standard should apply to athletes who play a sport where height actually matters.

I know that it's probably better from a business perspective to create an illusion that NBA players truly are "larger than life," I get that. But at some point the ridiculousness must end.

Maybe this topic interests me because I want to know the actual heights of NBA players. Is that so much to ask? In today's NBA, yeah, it probably is.


  1. Basketball is not just about height. And it does not matter as much as you think, but yeah height fraud in the NBA is ridiculous.


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