Height is a pretty big deal in the NBA.
Considering that the game of basketball centers around a hoop that is 10 feet high, it only makes sense that being taller tends to be an advantage. However, some players lie about their listed heights—to appear shorter.
Kevin Durant of the Oklahoma City Thunder is the perfect example of this. During a recent postgame conversation, Durant revealed that he was actually 6-foot-11, not his listed height of 6-foot-9. The 2013-14 MVP explained why he likes to give the impression that he's shorter than he actually is, via Chris Herring of The Wall Street Journal:
“But really, I’ve always thought it was cool to say I’m a 6-9 small forward,” he said. “Really, that’s the prototypical size for a small forward. Anything taller than that, and they’ll start saying, ‘Ah, he’s a power forward.’ ”
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“I remember laughing when they said, ‘6 feet,’ because me and about 20,000 other people in the arena knew that was a lie,” he said. “I’m 5-foot-10 on a good day.”
Herring also points out numerous examples of particular players' listed heights fluctuating throughout the years.
Because there isn't a concrete measuring system, it's hard to know what a real player's height is. A player's listed height could be his barefoot height, height with shoes on, or merely a made-up number to fit what a player desires. For some cases like Durant's, it would appear players prefer a listed height that fits the prototypical size of the position they play.
Regardless of their actual sizes, I think it's safe to assume the vast majority of NBA players are taller than your everyday man.