National Basketball Association
Herd Hierarchy: Colin Cowherd picks his top 10 sports sidekicks
National Basketball Association

Herd Hierarchy: Colin Cowherd picks his top 10 sports sidekicks

Published Jun. 30, 2021 8:32 a.m. ET

Every Batman needs his Robin, even in the sports world. 

And with Scottie Pippen — possibly the most famous Robin of all — making headlines lately, Colin Cowherd this week decided to define exactly what makes a great sports sidekick, and of course, provide some clarity on what makes a Batman a Batman and a Robin a Robin.

"[Scottie Pippen] always wanted to be viewed as a one, paid like a one, get all the accessories of a one, the respect of a one — but if he played poorly, he wouldn't be around for the tough questions," Cowherd said.

On Tuesday's episode of "The Herd," Cowherd took a shot at ranking the 10 best sports sidekicks of all time, with none other than Mr. Pippen all the way down at No. 10.

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Let's see how his full list shook out: 

10. SCOTTIE PIPPEN

Career highlights: Six-time NBA champion, seven-time NBA All-Star

Batman: Michael Jordan

Cowherd’s take: "We started using the term with him. I would argue he’s a much better defensive player than he actually was a skilled offensive player, but [Scottie Pippen] was a great Robin, and he always understood it was Michael's team. Michael got the last shot."

9. ROB GRONKOWSKI

Career highlights: Five-time Pro Bowler, four-time Super Bowl champion

Batman: Tom Brady

Cowherd’s take: "[Rob Gronkowski] is arguably the greatest tight end of all time. … Brady to Gronk is the most prolific touchdown duo in NFL [postseason] history, with 14."

8. JOHN STOCKTON

Career highlights: 10-time NBA All-Star, nine-time NBA assists leader

Batman: Karl Malone

Cowherd’s take: "Karl Malone ends up top-five scorer of all time. … We never talk about [Stockton] in the Robin conversation. He's one of the top five point guards ever. … Rock solid."

7. LOU GEHRIG

Career highlights: Two-time MVP, six-time World Series champ, Yankees captain 

Batman: Babe Ruth

Cowherd’s take: "On those teams with Ruth, there were moments when he was actually the better player."

6. DWYANE WADE

Career highlights: 13-time All-Star, three-time NBA champion

Batman: LeBron James, Shaquille O'Neal

Cowherd’s take: "On ‘The Heatles,’ he was a Robin. … Was never a great shooter. He was always kind of the soul of a team, but he wasn't as dominating when Shaq came and they won. Not as dominating physically as LeBron when they won."

5. BILL BELICHICK

Career highlights: Six-time Super Bowl champion, three-time NFL Coach of the Year

Batman: Tom Brady

Cowherd’s take: "We can now say it was 60-40 minimum [Tom] Brady over [Bill] Belichick. Bill struggled to win in Cleveland without Brady. He could not win early in New England without Brady, and he could not win last year without Brady."

4. KAREEM ABDUL-JABBAR

Career highlights: Six-time NBA champion, 19-time NBA All-Star, six-time NBA MVP

Batman: Magic Johnson

Cowherd’s take: "Yes, the leading scorer in league history was a Robin on the ‘Showtime Lakers.’ When you watch the highlights of the ‘Showtime Lakers,’ it's almost all Magic. … It was really Magic's team."

3. MARK MESSIER

Career highlights: Six-time Stanley Cup champion, 15-time NHL All-Star

Batman: Wayne Gretzky

Cowherd’s take: "When he was in Edmonton, that was one of the great hockey teams of all-time. Gretzky — ‘The Great One’ — was No. 1. Messier was one of the top five players in the sport, maybe top three. He was the two. … One of the great tough guys ever. Could skate, tough, could score."

2. JERRY RICE

Career highlights: Three-time Super Bowl champ, 13-time Pro Bowler, all-time leader in receiving yards and touchdown receptions

Batman: Joe Montana

Cowherd’s take: "It was Montana’s dynasty. Nobody disputes that. Montana was the MVP of Super Bowls."

1. KOBE BRYANT

Career highlights: Five-time NBA champ, two-time NBA Finals MVP, 18-time NBA All-Star

Batman: Shaquille O'Neal

Cowherd’s take: "During the Shaq-Kobe rivalry, Shaq was the greater player. If it wasn’t for free throws, he would’ve gotten all the shots late. It was Shaq’s team. … [Kobe was] one of the 10 best players I’ve seen, but in that dynasty, Kobe was viewed as the two. He was very, very young. That's the best Robin ever."

For Cowherd's full breakdown, check out his "Herd Hierarchy" below:

Herd Hierarchy: Colin Cowherd ranks the 10 best sidekicks of all time ' THE HERD

In this edition of Herd Hierarchy, Colin Cowherd ranks the 10 best sports sidekicks of all time. Watch to see which players from the NFL, NBA and NHL end up on his list.

For more up-to-date news on all things "The Herd," click here to register for alerts on the FOX Sports app!

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