Greatest Muslim Athletes In History of Sports

by Sameer Arshad | Posted on Wednesday, May 21st, 2014 | 0

Muhammad Ali

Boxing (1960-1981)

Muhammad Ali

Muhammad Ali was not a born muslime, he converted to Islam during his very successfull boxing career. He defeated almost every heavyweight boxer at his prime and during his career he was regarded as the greatest athletes on planet. He won Olympic Gold Medal for USA in Olympics 1960 and went on to become World Heavyweight Champions on three different occassions.

Apart from his boxing ability he was a very intelligent man and there was hardly anyone who could out speak or out thought him. The chrisma charm and that self belief was personafied by Muhammad Ali who was stripped of his titles when he went on all out attack against the “Vietnamm War”.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Basketball (1966-1989)

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar best muslim athlete

Just like Muhammad Alia, Kareen Jabbar was a converted muslime but he was one of the greatest basketball players in the history of NBA. In his 23 years illustrious career he racked up 38,387 points in NBA making him the all time top scorer. He was destined to be one of the best NBA players from his college basketball days. Won multiple titles in NCAA and UCLA before turning professional.

Some of his achievements are as follow:

  1. Highest Points Scorer in History of NBA
  2. Won NBA Championship on 6 Occassions
  3. each of his NBA Championship winning year followed by “Most Valueable Player” (6 Times)
  4. Twice he was named “Most Valueable Player” in NBA Finals (2 Times)
  5. He was part of NBA All-Star Team on 19th different occasions.

Zinedine Zidane

Football (1988-2006)

Zinedine Zidane best muslim footballer

Zidane hailed from a Algerian family born in France, he is probably one of the top 5 best footballers to have played the game. Won FIFA world Cup 1998 for france almost single handedly, lead them to european championship glory two years later and won so many trophies at his clubs like Juventus and Real Madrid.

He was named FIFA best player of the years three times and only Lionel Messi has won the award more times that Zizzou.

Mike Tyson

Boxing (1981 – 2005)

Mike Tyson greatest muslim boxer

Mike Tyson is another american born athlete who made his name in boxing’s heavyweight division. He converted to Islam during his time in jail he won multiple titles in heavyweight boxing mainly are WBC and WBA world championships. Although his career was hampered by controversies, that include drug addiction, rape charges and going bankrupt.

But since retiring from boxing he is getting back to being a sober self, did a shorts roles in movies and has his very own TV show. In total Mike Tyson earned $300 million during his boxing career.

Hakeem Olajuwon

Basketball (1981 to 2002)

Hakeem Olajuwon best muslim basketball player

One of the greatest defensive players to have played in NBA, Hakeem Olajuwon was converted muslim but a very devoted one. He use to fast during holy month of “Ramadan” while NBA season was going on. His accomplishments are huge and here is the list of some of them.

  1. Was named “NBA Defensive Player of the Year” Twice in his career
  2. Won the NBA Finals MVP award twice (2 times)
  3. Lead his team to two NBA Championship Titles
  4. He is the Leading Shot-Blocker in the history of NBA
  5. He was named in NBA All-Star 12 times.

Shaquille O’Neal

Basketball (1989 – 2011)

Shaquille O'Neal is a muslim

Now this story is a bit twister, there is no doubt Shaq is one of the all time greatest NBA players and his accomplishment list is huge both on and off the court. In a couple of interviews I have seen and heard that Shaquille O”Neal infect is a muslim, I am not too sure about how much he practice Islam but He went to Mecca for pilgrimage.

Imran Khan

Cricketer (1975 – 1992)

Imran Khan Pakistan politics

Imran Khan is a household name in his native Pakistan, where he has become the most followed politicial in recent times. Though he earned recognition by leading Pakistan to thier first ever World Cup title in 1992. Khan was regaded as one of the best all-rounders test cricket has seen. He was a geniune fast bower who could swing to the ball both ways and was a solid middle order batsman. Though it was his captaincy which made his unique for all the pakistani cricket fans.

Prince Naseem Hamed

Boxing (1992-2002)

Prince Naseem Hamed greatest boxing muslim

Naseem Hamed was everything what boxing has become today, a flamboyent feather weight champions who held the title from 1995 to 2001 and he retired in 2002 due to injuries and lack of interest in the sport. He was king of trash talk and defeated pretty solid fighters in his career which only laster around 10 years (31-1-0)

Marat Safin

Tennis (1997 – 2009)

Marat Safin muslim with grand slam titles

Russian tennis player who was born in a tatar family, raised as a muslim, he is probably the only muslime tennis player to have more than 1 grand slam.


About the Author

Formula one fan, blogger, designer and entrepreneur. Knows thing or two about a thing a two of sports, tweak codes, make cool infographs.

TSM Plug