NBA podcasts come in different shapes and sizes. There are shows that are formatted in an interview style, and then there are podcasts that remind me of a DJ Khaled album with numerous guests and co-hosts. The association has a variety of entertaining characters in their players and in the media. There’s really something for everyone. From the in-depth NBA game breakdowns of the Dunc’d On podcast to the unfiltered stylings of the All The Smoke podcast, here are the 29 best podcasts according to me, a huge NBA fan.
The 29 Best NBA Podcasts, According to A Huge NBA Fan
1. 'The Lowe Post'
If you’re looking to learn the deep inner-workings of the NBA on and off the court, you have to read ESPN NBA reporter Zach Lowe. One of the top voices of the NBA, Lowe has the best NBA podcast in my opinion. He has the right mix of X’s & O’s talk with the classic team-building conversation.
One of the hard parts in finding quality podcasts in the sports realm is the constant need to hyperbolize opinions and have hot take arguments. Lowe has the perfect balance of finding his voice while also providing nuance to an NBA discussion. I also appreciate the classic conversations with reporters like Howard Beck (What Up Beck? For the real ones) and Kevin Arnovitz which take deep dives across the league.
2. ‘The Bill Simmons Podcast’
Though his podcast delves into different topics, I think Bill Simmons’ bread and butter still revolves around the NBA. Though I find that some of Simmons’ takes can be a bit hyperbolic, his appreciation and interest in the NBA shine bright through his show. With guests like Ryen Russillo, I always find Simmons’ NBA related talk enjoyable.
Simmons also created the Book of Basketball 2.0 podcast which is separate and takes a look back at NBA history with conversations about re-drafting drafts from 20 years ago and jaunts down memory lane.
3. ‘Dunc’d On Basketball NBA Podcast’
Like the title says, I am a huge NBA fan. I’m looking for detailed information and breakdowns of the association. This includes everyone from the stars like LeBron James to the last guy on the bench. Co-hosts Nate Duncan and Danny Leroux have some of the deepest analysis of any podcast with breakdowns of every team, trade deadline conversations, and daily recaps of the previous night’s games. NBA novices will learn about the league listening to Dunc’d On.
4. ‘All The Smoke’
Co-hosts Barnes and Jackson were known for their honesty throughout their playing careers in the NBA, so it only made sense that the two former Golden State Warrior teammates would start a podcast. The combination has worked out perfectly, with the unfiltered duo having some of the best interviews in the NBA world period.
I find their interviews so revealing because they have such a strong chemistry and can get the most out of their guests. Hearing Draymond Green reveal when he felt Kevin Durant change was an eye-opening tidbit.
5. ‘Brian Windhorst & The Hoop Collective’
One of the top NBA reporters, ESPN’s Brian Windhorst is the lead of the Hoop Collective podcast that has nearly the entire collection of ESPN’s NBA reporters around the country. The dry sense of humor of Tim “Banned” McMahon, the historical NBA reporting legend that is Jackie MacMullan, as well as the random banter that goes on makes this a fun listen.
6. ‘Back to Back: An NBA Podcast’
A part of the Athletic network, the Back to Back podcast features a rotating cast of characters for a series of shows aired throughout the week. I enjoy the podcast because it has something for everyone. If you want to get down to data and analytics in the NBA, Nerder She Wrote is good, but if you want to hear a more laid back conversation, the Basketball Buds is one of the best back and forth dialogues.
7. 'The Woj Pod'
The preeminent NBA reporter, Adrian Wojnarowski mans one of the top NBA podcasts. A potpourri of the current happenings in the NBA rumor mill is what I’m usually listening for, but I find his interviews with players, coaches, and executives underrated.
Woj does a great job of telling the entire story, like when he spoke with Nets forward Taurean Prince about being homeless while in high school, and his pathway to the NBA. Woj knows practically everything about the characters in the association, so I expect some illuminating factoids to be dropped.
8. ‘Knuckleheads with Quentin Richardson & Darius Miles’
Former Los Angeles Clippers teammates Darius Miles and Quentin Richardson are real friends. Having come of age as youngsters in the association, Miles and Richardson share a ton of interesting stories from their AAU days to their careers in the NBA. Their conversations with everyone from Allen Iverson to Dwyane Wade makes for a rousing listen. Head tap to that.
9. ‘JJ Redick Podcast’
The original NBA player podcaster, Redick is a trailblazer when it comes to NBA podcasting. Hosted along with Tommy Alter, it feels like Redick’s podcast has been hosted on 1,000 different sites throughout the past few years. He’s always been one of the best players at contextualizing emotions during big playoff games and placing the viewer in the mind of an NBA player.
10. ‘No Dunks’
The original crew that was known as The Basketball Jones and then The Starters, No Dunks is a daily podcast that essentially continues what the team of Tas Melas, J.E. Skeets, Trey Kerby, and Leigh Ellis have been doing for quite some time. It’s one of the funniest basketball podcasts that finds a way to mesh the NBA with pop culture.
11. ‘Pull Up with CJ McCollum’
One of the more polished NBA players on and off the court, C.J. McCollum hosts the Pull Up podcast with Jordan Schultz. A journalism major at Lehigh, McCollum has really good conversations with his peers around the league. The Carmelo Anthony episode that had McCollum and Anthony’s real-time reaction to the NBA season being postponed due to Coronavirus was an all-timer for me.
12. ‘House of Strauss: An NBA Podcast’
One of the best NBA reporters, Ethan Strauss mans the House of Strauss podcast that covers a bevy of topics. I enjoy the podcast because Strauss speaks with really smart and thoughtful guests. The conversations go deeper than basketball, with conversations like Kevin Durant’s search for happiness in Golden State or how the unique rise to superstardom Stephen Curry came to be.
13. ‘The Jump’
ESPN’s flagship NBA television show also appears in podcast form. Hosted by Rachel Nichols, I enjoy The Jump for it’s fun NBA talk and banter. Nichols always has had a great sense of what central themes should be discussed with her panelists.
14. ‘Ledlow & Parker’
A Turner Sports production, Ledlow & Parker is a quality podcast. The tandem of Candace Parker and Kristen Ledlow is a fun pairing with good chemistry. They mix in NBA talk, as well as what’s happening off the court.
Each episode has many layers to it, as Ledlow and Parker interview multiple guests throughout the show. You might catch an artist and NBA fan like Snoop Dogg, but there are also multiple ballers that appear on the weekly such as Victor Oladipo, Becky Hammon, and Sue Bird.
15. ‘Hoops, Adjacent with David Aldridge and BIG Wos’
An OG and Hall of Famer in the NBA reporting business, there aren’t many reporters with the knowledge of David Aldridge. Aldridge and his co-host BIG Wos have a funny rapport with their guests and it has shown in conversations with guests like Charles Barkley and Bomani Jones.
16. ‘Posted Up With Chris Haynes’
One of the current “player whisperers,” Yahoo Sports NBA reporter Chris Haynes hosts one of the top NBA related podcasts. Many of the top players, including Kevin Durant, Anthony Davis and Damian Lillard have gone on the show to chop it up with Haynes about their thoughts on a multitude of topics.
17. RealGM Radio with Danny Leroux
I’m always looking for deep analysis on my Indiana Pacers and New York Knicks—yes, I’m a fan of both teams but that story is for another day—so I can enjoy what Danny Leroux has done with RealGM Radio. Expect detailed team breakdowns, draft, and trade discussions, and player evaluations.
18. 'The Habershow'
I enjoy how Habershow host Tom Haberstroh mixes statistical analysis with conversations about the top NBA stories. His sense of humor is on point, and he also gets great guests for a show that covers everything from injuries and rest in the NBA
19. ‘Inside the Green Room with Danny Green’
Current Los Angeles Laker Danny Green and his co-host Harrison Sanford take you through the life of an NBA player in this laid back podcast. A two-time NBA champion, Green is thoughtful and it shines through in the quality conversations he and Sanford have with a Hall of Fame level list of guests. The podcast’s recent episode speaking to a number of different players around the league about what they’re doing in quarantine was an enjoyable listen for me.
20. ‘Winging It with Vince Carter’
When Winging It started, the podcast featured two teammates in Vince Carter and Kent Bazemore last season with Annie Finberg co-hosting. After Bazemore left the Hawks, Carter and Finberg kept the podcast going strong this season. One of my favorite episodes from the show recently was Lamar Odom. Odom’s story is really unique and Carter and Finberg did a great job of drawing a lot of interesting morsels from Carter’s friend and former teammate.
22. Game Theory
The underappreciated gem of The Athletic’s podcast network, Game Theory is as comprehensive any basketball podcast could ever be. While most pods have a primary focus, Game Theory is able to cover nearly all aspects and levels of basketball with precision and expertise. Hosted by Sam Vecenie (The Athletic’s main NBA Draft expert), Game Theory covers the NBA as well as any one of the best NBA podcasts, college basketball as well as any dedicated college basketball podcast, and the NBA Draft as well as any NBA Draft podcast.
23. The Dunker Spot
If you can tell your double drags from your Spain pick and rolls, The Dunker Spot is the pod for you. Hosts Nekias Duncan and Steve Jones Jr. are unabashed basketball nerds in the best way and giddily dive into the minutiae that other pods either ignore or never even notice in the first place. Additionally, The Dunker Spot is the rare mainstream NBA pod that treats the WNBA with the level of seriousness that it deserves; their coverage of both the NBA and the W is essential listening for anybody who wants to understand how and why basketball really works.
24. Thinking Basketball
Although Thinking Basketball doesn’t drop episodes as frequently as the other best NBA podcasts, it’s so exhaustive that you can excuse the absence of a regular drop schedule. In particular, host Ben Taylor pulls from a nearly encyclopedic knowledge of basketball history to properly contextualize and frame the league. Blending advanced stats (including his own proprietary metrics) with rigorous film study, Thinking Basketball is so rewarding because it’s the brainchild of somebody who has obviously thought very deeply about basketball.
25. The BBall Index
Hang around NBA Twitter long enough and you’ll inevitably stumble upon BBall Index’s incredible array of advanced stats, which catalog basically everything that can be cataloged on a basketball court. As such, the BBall Index Podcast is an invaluable resource, placing BBall Index’s data in a digestible, easily understandable format.
26. Slappin’ Glass
This is the closest you can get to sitting in on an NBA coaches meeting without actually sitting in on an NBA coaches meeting. While Slappin’ Glass isn’t explicitly about the NBA, each episode is an enlightening interview with a prominent coach about their coaching philosophy.
27. The Old Man and the Three
The original “new media” pod, The Old Man and the Three is still the best in the genre. While most player-hosted pods feel more like branding exercises than actual content, JJ Redick is genuinely a great host; there’s a reason he’s quickly become a rising star at ESPN after retiring last season. Even if the interviews can be soft-pedaled, players are uncommonly open and honest with Redick and co-host Tommy Atler.
28. Please Don’t Aggregate This
Jake Fischer—formerly with Bleacher Report, now with Yahoo Sports—is the only good scoopster. Whereas others in this genre seem to conceive of themselves as some hybrid of a CIA power broker and Varys from Game of Thrones, Fischer actually seems like a real person. It’s his job to know things and he wants you to know them too. As such, Please Don’t Aggregate This is the rare scoops-driven podcast that’s worth listening to because Fischer avoids the slimy politics and intellectual dishonesty that define other prominent news-breakers.
29. Indy Cornrows
Nominally a Pacers’ specific podcast, Indy Cornrows treats the Pacers as a launching pad for a broader examination of the NBA’s micro and macro trends. Hosts Mark Schindler and Caitlin Cooper know truly mind-boggling amounts of ball.