Basketball Prospectus: Unfiltered Everything Else is Fluff.

February 4, 2009

Add one: LeBron drops 52 on the Knicks

Filed under: Uncategorized — Bradford Doolittle @ 11:30 pm

Perhaps inspired by Kobe Bryant’s 61-point outburst in Madison Square Garden on Monday, LeBron James posted the 388th 50-point game in NBA history in Cleveland’s win over the Knicks on Wednesday. Rather than post another 50 facts, I’ll just update a couple of my existing ones.

First, James had 52 points, 10 rebounds and 11 assists, the 10th rebound coming off a missed Chris Duhon three-pointer on the game’s final play. In my piece, I stated that, unofficially, the last 50-point game/triple-double came from Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in 1975. Knicks broadcaster Mike Breen confirmed this fact, but of course it’s obsolete now.

The Knicks have now coughed up 50-point games in back-to-back games. According to Breen, this last occured in December, 1962. According to my database, there were eight 50-point games that month–six by Wilt Chamberlain and two by Elgin Baylor. One of those came in a head-to-head matchup, one of three times that has happened. The team that was victimized twice in a row was Chamberlain’s Warriors. The Lakers and Warriors played a back-to-back set on Dec. 14 and 15, 1962. Baylor scored 51 and 52 points in those contests, respectively.

A couple of other addendums:

– I overlooked one of the foreign-born 50-point scorers–Hakeem Olajuwon. Add him to the list with Dirk Nowitzki and Patrick Ewing.

– Also, in case it wasn’t clear, my database includes regular-season performances only. Another fact I could have included was a list of players that hit 50 points in a playoff game but never did so in the regular season. Readers pointed out two such players: Charles Barkley and Chris Webber.

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