Credit: AP - Scanpix
Credit AP - Scanpix

Rankings are always a tough thing to do and they often create a lot of discussions. This time won't be different. 

Dirk Nowitzki

Dirk  Nowitzki
Position: PF
Age: 43
Height: 213 cm
Weight: 111 kg
Birth place: Wurzburg, Germany

American website Hoopshype published a list of the 40 greatest European players ever, which will most likely generate some noise in the Old continent. 

1. Dirk Nowitzki

At the top of the list, there's Dirk Nowitzki, the former Dallas Mavericks superstar. During his NBA career, Nowitzki won an NBA title in 2011, an NBA Finals MVP title in 2011, and the MVP title back in 2007.

In recent years, Nowitzki has cemented his status as 'probably' the most important European player in the recent history of the NBA. 

2. Giannis Antetokounmpo

At the second place, we find 'The Greek Freak' Giannis Antetokounmpo. Milwaukee Bucks superstar had a unique path to stardom but he's now one of the best players in the league. Antetokounmpo has won one NBA title, two MVP titles, and one NBA Finals MVP title. 

3. Pau Gasol

In the third place of the Hoopshype list, there's Spanish big man Pau Gasol. Recently retired, Gasol has won two NBA titles during his time with the Los Angeles Lakers playing alongside Kobe Bryant.

The big man has also accomplished a lot of things with the Spanish NT, winning seven Eurobasket medals, a World Cup, and three Olympic medals. 

4. Tony Parker

Scrolling down the list, at the fourth place, we have Tony Parker, now president of ASVEL. Parker was part of the Spurs dynasty with Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili and won four NBA titles together with an NBA Finals MVP title.

The French point guard is still in the top 20 for assists in the history of the NBA. 

5. Nikola Jokic

At fifth place, it's time for current NBA star Nikola Jokic. The 26-year-old Serbian big man has quickly become one of the biggest players in the league and has already been named MVP.

With the Serbian NT, Jokic has won the silver medal at the Olympic games. 'The Joker' is one of the most entertaining players in the league and his passing style is really unique.

6. Marc Gasol 

The second Spanish player in the top-10 is Marc Gasol, in sixth place. Pau's younger brother won an NBA title in the final part of his NBA experience with the Toronto Raptors, after moving from his longtime experience with the Memphis Grizzlies.

After deciding to leave the NBA, Gasol decided to join Girona in the Spanish second division, the team that he owns. 

7. Luka Doncic

Slovenian superstar Luka Doncic is listed at the seventh place of the ranking. A teenage phenomenon in Madrid, where he won everything that he could with Real, Doncic's transition to the NBA was quick, and immediately became one of the best players in the league. 

So far, 'Luka Magic' hasn't been able to win with his Dallas Mavericks but he has time on his side and a talent that has rarely been seen before. 

8. Rudy Gobert

In the eighth position of the Hoopshype ranking, we can find French big man Rudy Gobert. The French big is hands down, one of the best defensive players in the league and has won the Defensive Player of The Year on three different occasions. 

Gobert has also found success with his national team, winning a silver medal at the Olympics, two bronze medals at the World Cup, and a bronze medal at Eurobasket. 

9. Drazen Petrovic

The first Croatian player on the list, in the ninth place, is legendary Drazen Petrovic. His premature death, when he was only 28-years-old, is still a tragedy that European basketball mourns constantly. 

During his NBA experience, Petrovic, at first, struggled to find minutes with the Portland Trail Blazers but when he was traded to the New Jersey Nets, he immediately became one of the best players in the league, leading his team to the playoffs and trash-talking anyone, including Michael Jordan. 

10. Predrag Stojakovic

The last place on the top-10 belongs to Serbian sharpshooter Predrag Stojakovic. In the early '00s, Stojakovic formed an amazing partnership with Chris Webber in Sacramento. The Kings were one of the most entertaining teams of that era but unfortunately, they weren't able to win an NBA title.

Stojakovic, though, got his NBA ring later in his career, when he joined the Dallas Mavericks and fellow European star Dirk Nowitzki. A deadly three-point shooter, Stojakovic kept an average of 40% from downtown for his entire NBA career. 

The rest of the Hoopshype list: 

11. Arvydas Sabonis

12. Detlef Schrempf

13. Vlade Divac

14. Tony Kukoc

15. Nikola Vucevic

16. Joakim Noah

17. Andrei Kirilenko

18. Rik Smits

19. Goran Dragic

20. Zydrunas Ilgauskas

21. Domantas Sabonis

22. Ricky Rubio

23. Dino Radja

24. Danilo Gallinari

25. Sarunas Marciulonis

26. Kristaps Porzingis

27. Hidayet Turkoglu

28. Nicolas Batum

29. Mehmet Okur

30. Jonas Valanciunas

31. Dejan Bodiroga

32. Clint Capela

33. Jose Calderon

34. Boris Diaw

35. Juan Carlos Navarro

36. Bojan Bogdanovic

37. Evan Fournier

38. Marcin Gortat

39. Dennis Schroeder

40. Nikos Galis

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