Brazilian volleyball has a rich history of legendary players who have made significant contributions to the sport. The Historical Popularity Index (HPI) measures a player’s popularity online based on their biography information. This article highlights the top 5 most legendary Brazilian Volleyball Players of all time based on their HPI.
1. Bernardo Rezende (1959 – )
Bernardo Rezende is a Brazilian volleyball coach and former player, who has an HPI of 51.39, making him the most famous Brazilian Volleyball Player. His biography has been translated into 25 different languages. Rezende is the most successful coach in the history of volleyball, accumulating more than 30 major titles in his twenty-year career directing the Brazilian male and female teams.
As the head coach of Brazil’s men’s national volleyball team at the Olympics in Athens (2004) and Rio (2016), he has two Olympic gold medals to his name. As the head coach of Brazil’s women’s national volleyball team in Atlanta in 1996 and Sydney in 2000, he also took home two bronze medals. He is the all-time most successful team sport coach as of 2021 with a total of 48 medals.
2. Giba (1976 – )
Former professional volleyball player Giba from Brazil was an outside hitter. He has an HPI of 47.88, making him the second most famous Brazilian Volleyball Player. 35 different languages have 35 different translations of his biography. He played professionally in Argentina, Brazil, Italy, Russia, and the United Arab Emirates for a brief period of time. He is well known for his accomplishments with the national squad.
With the Brazilian National Team, he won a total of 8 South American Championships, 3 America’s Cups, 8 World League titles, 3 World Grand Champions Cups, three World Championships (2002, 2006, 2010), a gold medal at the 2004 Summer Olympics, and two silver medals at the 2008 and 2012 Summer Olympics, where he was the team’s captain. Giba retired from professional volleyball in the summer of 2014 at the age of 37.
3. Bruno Rezende (1986 – )
Bruno Rezende is a Brazilian volleyball player who is currently a member of the Brazil men’s national volleyball team and the Italian club Modena Volley. The son of the legendary Brazilian coach Bernardo Rezende, he is one of the most accomplished setters and volleyball players in the world. He has an HPI of 39.87, making him the third most famous Brazilian Volleyball Player. His biography has been translated into 22 different languages.
Bruno’s accomplishments include 2016 Olympic Champion, double silver medalist of the Olympic Games (Beijing 2008, London 2012), 2010 World Champion, double gold medalist of the World Grand Champions Cup (2009, 2013), South American Champion (2007, 2009, 2011, 2013, 2015, 2017, 2021), multi medalist of the World League, Pan American Games, Brazilian Champion (2004, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2013), and Italian Champion (2016, 2019).
4. Sérgio Santos: The Fourth Most Famous Brazilian Volleyball Player
Sérgio Santos, also known as Serginho or Escadinha, is a retired volleyball player with an HPI of 38.33. He’s widely considered one of the best liberos of all time and has won gold and silver medals at multiple Olympic Games. Additionally, he’s a two-time World Champion, and a multi-medalist of the World League, South American Championship, World Cup, and the Grand Champions Cup. In 2009, he became the first libero to be named Most Valuable Player in the history of the FIVB World League.
5. Dante Amaral: The Fifth Most Famous Brazilian Volleyball Player
Dante Amaral is a retired professional volleyball player with an HPI of 36.78. He’s best known as Dante and played in the position of outside hitter. Standing at 6 ft 7 in, he helped Brazil win gold medals at the 2004 and 2016 Olympics. His achievements include winning the World Championship, the World Cup, and the Grand Champions Cup. With his impressive record, it’s no surprise that his biography has been translated into 22 different languages.
6. Murilo Endres: The Sixth Most Famous Brazilian Volleyball Player
Murilo Endres is a current volleyball player with an HPI of 36.20. He’s a member of Brazil’s men’s national volleyball team and Brazilian club SESI São Paulo. He’s a double silver medalist of the Olympic Games in Beijing 2008 and London 2012 and a World Champion in 2006 and 2010. He’s a multi-medalist in the World League, South American Championship, World Cup, and the Grand Champions Cup. With all of these achievements, it’s no wonder that his biography has been translated into 22 different languages.
7. Wallace de Souza: The Seventh Most Famous Brazilian Volleyball Player
Wallace de Souza is a retired volleyball player with an HPI of 35.73. He’s a former member of the Brazil men’s national volleyball team and a 2016 Olympic Champion. He’s also a silver medalist of the Olympic Games (London 2012) and a three-time South American Champion.
However, his career was marred by a controversial incident in January 2023 when he posted a photo of himself holding a gun and asked his followers if they would shoot the Brazilian President, Lula, in the face. After receiving backlash, he deleted the post and apologized for inciting violence. Sada Cruzeiro announced his indefinite suspension following the incident.
8. Ricardo Garcia
Ricardo Garcia, also known as Ricardinho, is a Brazilian volleyball player born on November 19, 1975, in São Paulo. With an HPI (Historical Popularity Index) of 34.78, he is the 8th most famous Brazilian volleyball player. In 2004, he was part of the Brazilian team that won the gold medal in the Olympic tournament, playing in all eight matches.
Despite being dismissed from the team in 2007 due to contention with other team members, he rejoined the team for the 2012 Olympics in London, where they won the silver medal. His biography has been translated into 16 different languages, a testament to his global popularity.
9. Thaísa Menezes
Thaísa Menezes, born on April 15, 1987, is a professional volleyball player from Brazil with an HPI of 34.54, making her the 9th most famous Brazilian volleyball player. She is a two-time Olympic gold medalist, having won back-to-back golds in 2008 and 2012. She has also won numerous Best Spiker and Best Blocker Awards and is widely regarded as one of the greatest Brazilian players of all time. Her biography has been translated into 20 different languages, reflecting her status as a beloved player worldwide.
10. Natália Pereira
Natália Pereira, born on April 4, 1989, is a Brazilian professional volleyball player with an HPI of 34.15, making her the 10th most famous Brazilian volleyball player. She won a gold medal with the Brazil women’s national volleyball team in the 2012 Summer Olympics. Her biography has been translated into 17 different languages, highlighting her international popularity.
Brazilian volleyball players have left an indelible mark on the sport, and the players mentioned in this article are just a few examples of the many talented athletes from Brazil who have made their way onto the world stage. Whether you’re a fan of volleyball or just a fan of great athletes, these players are definitely worth keeping an eye on.