With the new NBA season just a couple of months away, fans across the country are already looking forward to another year of high-drama and exciting play. But which players can we expect to put in the most effort on-court when October rolls around?

Reviewing data from the 2022/2023 regular season, we’ve been able to rank and reveal the hardest-working NBA players, teams, and positions, and those that burn the most calories per game. Read on to see where your favorites rank!

The NBA 2022-23 regular season hardest working players and teams 

So, which NBA players put the most effort in last season?


1. Joel Embiid

Taking top spot, Philadelphia 76ers icon Joel Embiid is the hardest-working player in the NBA. The 2023 MVP burned an incredible 40,611 calories last season, which equates to a significant 615 per game – or 17.8 calories for each minute spent on court!

2. Nikola Jokic

Next up, Nikola Jokic is officially the NBA’s second-hardest working player, with the 6’11”, 284lb center the only other athlete to burn over 600 calories a game (607). This works out at 41,895 all season, the fifth-most, and 18 per on-court minute.

3. Zion Williamson

In third, Zion Williamson burned 595 calories a game, which equates to 18 calories a minute – the third-most of all NBA athletes. This comes as the forward travelled over 71 miles across his 29 games for the New Orleans Pelicans.

4. Julius Randle

Julius Randle takes fourth, after burning 564 calories per game during the 2022/23 season – which works out at 43,452 overall – while also covering almost 192 miles across his 77 appearances for the New York Knicks.

5. LeBron James

No NBA list is complete without including the King, who rightly earns a place as one of the five hardest-working stars. In fact, the Los Angeles Lakers power forward and four-time NBA champion burns an average of 564 calories a game!

6. Bam Adebayo

Two-time NBA All-Star Bam Adebayo takes sixth, burning roughly 561 calories a game – after making 75 appearances for the Miami Heat, that’s 42,070 over the course of the last season!

7. Nikola Vucevic

Nikola Vucevic also ranks among the NBA’s hardest workers, burning more calories than any other player last season (44,761) – that’s an impressive 553 a game, or 16.5 a minute. A consistent figure in the Chicago Bulls lineup, just six players made more NBA appearances than Vucevic in the period.

8. Anthony Davis

Another iconic name to make our list, Anthony Davis makes the cut with an eighth-place finish. This comes as he ran 127 miles in 56 games to burn a respectable 547 calories a game last season.

9. Pascal Siakam

In ninth, 2019 NBA champ and two-time NBA All-Star Pascal Siakam burns 546 calories each time he steps out on the court. This equates to 38,734 calories burned throughout the whole of last season.

10. Brook Lopez

Rounding out the ten hardest-working NBA players, we have Milwaukee Bucks center Brook Lopez, who burned an average of 545 calories each game last season. This comes as the 2021 NBA champion covered over 162 miles in 2,372 on-court minutes.

The hardest working NBA teams

Turning our attention to the hardest working franchises, we can crown the Brooklyn Nets as the top NBA team, with each player burning an average of 315 calories per game – compared to the league average of 283.

Meanwhile, the Detroit Pistons take second, with each player burning an average of 306 calories, ahead of the Miami Heat (305), Philadelphia 76ers (303), and Memphis Grizzlies (301).

Curiously, though, across the five hardest-working teams, only the Heat’s Bam Adebayo and the 76ers’ Joel Embiid make our overall top ten, while the Los Angeles Lakers have two representatives, despite the team placing sixth.

The hardest working basketball positions

We’ve revealed the NBA’s hardest-working individuals and teams, but how about the positions that put in the most work?

Interestingly, burning an astounding average 353 calories a game, those in the field goal position work the hardest on-court. This comes despite no athletes in this role making our overall top ten (with Luka Doncic the highest placed in 14th). Though, when analyzing all players who recorded over 1,000 minutes, FGs only run the fourth-furthest (136.5 miles), behind centers (142.57 miles), guard forwards (141.6 miles), and guards (137.52 miles).

Meanwhile, center forwards are the second-hardest workers, with the typical NBA CF burning 328 calories, followed by power forwards (313) and guard forwards (290). Next up, centers (288) and forwards (286) are only a few calories behind, while guards burn the fewest calories (263)!

With the new season just a couple of months away, the Denver Nuggets will be hoping to win a second consecutive championship – though, the likes of the Celtics, Suns, and Bucks will be waiting in the wings. In the meantime, explore the latest NBA odds, or discover more like this over on the Betway blog – including the most popular NBA teams and players, and the future cost of being an NBA fan.

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