October 20, 2017

List: Career high in points for 300 active and retired NBA players

2017/04/11 10:04 am 10:04 am10:04 am0 0 comments

If you were ever curious for a particular NBA player’s career high in points, you’ve most likely done a search and found them at a data-aggregator site like RealGM, sorted through Basketball Reference, or came across a specific article about that player’s career night.

After doing this two or three times, we found that it was ridiculous — in this age of internet and data — that there wasn’t one list of NBA player career high in points we could refer to. We got tired of Googling, getting to a site, and scanning the info every time we wanted to know Carmelo Anthony‘s, Dominique Wilkin’s or Kyrie Irving‘s career highs — much less finding info for older players such as Cazzie Russell, Earl Monroe or Bob McAdoo.

We decided to create a comprehensive resource for the the most-well known NBA players’ career highs in points. A week later, we’re publishing our list of more than 300 NBA players career highs in points in single game. The list isn’t just NBA superstars and all-stars but includes other notable NBA players; from tallest to shortest to #1 draft picks. From infamous characters and a couple dozen players that had their “one night in heaven”.

List of Career Highs (Points) to Rule Them All

Our list only contains non-ABA, NBA regular season career high in points. For example, Sleepy Floyd‘s scored 51 points in a record-setting playoff performance but you’ll find him on our list at 41 points — his regular season high. If you’re interested in postseason career highs, check this list of players with the most points in a single NBA playoff game.

After spending hours collecting and compiling this list, we also began to see some patterns and that gave us ideas to create some fun sub-categories and interesting custom sub-lists. We’ll start with those before getting to the mother-list (or go to list now):


The NBA Scoring Gods

No surprises here. The list here is sorted by players with the most career points total with their all-time rank as well as their single game career high. No flukes and no scrubs; just the the Michael Jordans, Kobe Bryants and Wilt Chamberlains of the league. All Mount Rushmore-types, all the time.

The NBA Scoring Gods' Career High in Points
Rank Player Career Points Team Career High
1 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar 38,387 Milwaukee Bucks 55
2 Karl Malone 36,928 Utah Jazz 61
3 Kobe Bryant 33,643 Los Angeles Lakers 81
4 Michael Jordan 32,292 Chicago Bulls 69
5 Wilt Chamberlain 31,419 Philadelphia Warriors 100
6 Dirk Nowitzki 30,211 Dallas Mavericks 53
7 LeBron James 28,674 Miami Heat 61
8 Shaquille O'Neal 28,596 Los Angeles Lakers 61
9 Moses Malone 27,409 Houston Rockets 53
10 Elvin Hayes 27,313 San Diego Rockets 54
29 Elgin Baylor 23,149 Los Angeles Lakers 71
38 George Gervin 20,708 San Antonio Spurs 63

Surprising in a Good Way (or “One Night in Heaven”)

No disrespect to any player on our “surprising” list. We recognize that every player in the NBA is an amazing basketball talent; 99% of whom were their high school’s best player, their college’s best player and dominated since Kindergarten. Now that we got that out of the way, TONY DELK SCORED 53 POINTS IN A GAME?! (yes). Get ready to be shocked and awed.

Surprising Career Highs in Points
Player High Franchise Year
Devin Booker 70 Phoenix Suns 2017
Purvis Short 59 Golden State Warriors 1984
Jerry Stackhouse 57 Detroit Pistons 2001
Brandon Jennings 55 Milwaukee Bucks 2009
Tony Delk 53 Phoenix Suns 2001
Willie Burton 53 Philadelphia 76ers 1993
Allan Houston 53 New York Knicks 2003
Andre Miller 52 Portland Trailblazers 2010
Mo Williams 52 Minnesota Timberwolves 2015
Terrence Ross 51 Toronto Raptors 2014
Corey Brewer 51 Minnesota Timberwolves 2014
Tracy Murray 50 Washington Wizards 1998
Walt Wesley 50 Cleveland Cavaliers 1971
Charlie Villanueva 48 Toronto Raptor 2006
Darius Miles 47 Portland Trailblazers 2005
Maurice Lucas 46 Portland Trailblazers 1979

Purvis Short‘s 59 points and Andre Miller scored 52? Corey Brewer had 51 and Tracy Murray went for 50?

Devin Booker may become a great player at some point, but is he 70 points good this early in his career? Nah. That’s legend status and it’s way too early to not be surprised by his recent outburst. And because you’re asking — the answer is “yes,” I was alive and watching NBA basketball when Jerry Stackhouse led the league in scoring, but still surprised to see he scored 57 points.

Don’t play, you were surprised too.

Okay, But Admittedly Underwhelmed For Their Stature

This list of guys is a bunch of Hall of Famers and though their career highs are respectable, they’re not comparable to the shadow these players casted (or casting) on the league.

Yes, it’s shocking that Charles Barkley “only” scored 47 points in the regular season and for being the all-time leading scorer in NBA history, yes, I want to see more than 55 from Kareem. For as dominant and as much as he was known for his killer instinct that Kevin Garnett, we’d expect his career high was in the upper-50s, but in fact it’s just 47. Similarly for more modern players like Shawn Kemp‘s and Derrick Rose‘s career high of 42 points

Disappointing Career High in Points
Player High Team  Date
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar 55 Milwaukee Bucks 12/11/1971
Kevin Garnett 47 Minnesota Timberwolves 12/04/2005
Charles Barkley 47 Philadelphia 76ers 02/09/1988
Julius Erving* 45 Philadelphia 76ers  11/01/1980
Dwight Howard 45 Orlando Magic 01/12/2012
John Havlicek 43 Boston Celtics 03/08/1970
Chris Paul 43 New Orleans Hornets 04/03/2009
Derrick Rose 42 Chicago Bulls 03/18/2011
Joe Johnson 42 Atlanta Hawks 03/07/2006
Shawn Kemp 42 Seattle Supersonics 12/10/1994
Derrick Coleman 42 New Jersey Nets  02/15/1991
Yao Ming 41 Houston Rockets  02/22/2004

Dr. J gets a pass because much of his high-flying scoring happened in the ABA.


Surprising Career Highs (in a Bad Way)

In terms of great players, it’s surprising to see the career highs of Hall of Famers Bill Russell, Bill Walton, John Stockton and James Worthy with career highs that never hit 40. Russell was always spoken about in terms of his defense, but in an era where gathering twenty rebounds was common, one would think he would have had a couple field days on offensive put backs.

Disappointing All-Star Career High in Points
Player High Team
Metta World Peace 39 Sacramento Kings
Mark Price 39 Cleveland Cavaliers
James Worthy 38 Los Angeles Lakers
Bill Russell 37 Boston Celtics
Bill Walton 36 Portland Trailblazers
Kenyon Martin 35 New Jersey Nets
Andre Iguodala 34 Philadelphia 76ers
John Stockton 34 Utah Jazz
Andre Drummond 33 Detroit Pistons
Draymond Green 31 Golden State Warriors

Stockton’s 34 points? Okay fine, he’s a pass first and second guard. Bill Walton with 36? Not what I expected, but I didn’t fall out of my seat. Out of everyone, James Worthy is the biggest surprise on this list. He of the “look one way and spin the other” move and was often on the other side of Magic Johnson assists during the Showtime Lakers era, so to see a paltry 38 points is definitely disappointing. I mean, Darius Miles’ career high is 47.

In the case of Drummond and Draymond, both are relatively young (and more importantly active), so they get a pass. We’re sure they’re going to have a few more nights of career highs before their careers are over.

Because You Didn’t Know You Wanted To Know

Here’s a list of off-court characters (Darryl Dawkins), draft busts (Kwame Brown), infamous players (Dennis Rodman) and other notables that you might be interested in knowing their career highs. Not much to say here, save for the list speaks for itself.

Notable Single Game Career Highs (Points)
Player High Team
Antoine Walker 49 Boston Celtics
Nick Young 43 Washington Wizards
Rasheed Wallace 42 Portland Trailblazers
Kenny Smith 41 Houston Rockets
Andrea Bargnani 41 Toronto Raptors
Robert Horry 40 Houston Rockets
Dikembe Mutombo 39 Denver Nuggets
John Starks 39 New York Knicks
Sam Bowie 38 New Jersey Nets
Dell Curry 38 Charlotte Hornets
Christian Laettner 37 Atlanta Hawks
Doc Rivers 37 Atlanta Hawks
Darryl Dawkins 36 New Jersey Nets
Dennis Rodman 34 Detroit Pistons
Spud Webb 34 Sacremento Kings
Shawn Bradley 32 Dallas Mavericks
George Muresan 31 Washington Bullets
Kwame Brown 30 Washington Wizards
Brian Scalabrine 29 New Jersey Nets
JaVale McGee 28 Washington Wizards
Matt Bonner 28 San Antonio Spurs
Darko Milicic 25 Minnesota Timberwolves
Muggsy Bogues 24 Toronto Raptors
LaRue Martin 22 Portland Trailblazers
Manute Bol 18 Philadelphia 76ers
Keith Closs 14 Los Angeles Clippers

List: Career High in Points for 300 NBA Players (Game)

Alright, enough of us forcing our little games, judgey-judgments, fun (and not so fun) facts on you. Here’s our continually-updated list of single game career highs for 300 players we think you’d be searching for and interested in.

Our list is sorted by descending points from the highest (Wilt) to the lowest (you’ll have to scroll to see). You can also sort the list by the player’s name or sort the list by team to see who holds the franchise record for points in a single game.

List of NBA Players' Career High in Points
Player Career High Points Team (Franchise) Date
Wilt Chamberlain 100 Philadelphia Warriors 03/02/1962
Kobe Bryant 81 Los Angeles Lakers 01/22/2006
David Thompson 73 Denver Nuggets 04/09/1978
David Robinson 71 San Antonio Spurs 04/24/1994
Elgin Baylor 71 Los Angeles Lakers 11/15/1960
Devin Booker 70 Phoenix Suns 03/24/2017
Michael Jordan 69 Chicago Bulls 03/28/1990
Pete Maravich 68 New Orleans Jazz 02/25/1977
Rick Barry 64 Golden State Warriors 03/26/1974
Jerry West 63 Los Angeles Lakers 01/17/1962
Joe Fulks 63 Philadelphia Warriors 02/10/1949
George Gervin 63 San Antonio Spurs 04/09/1978
Carmelo Anthony 62 New York Knicks 01/24/2014
Tracy McGrady 62 Orlando Magic 03/10/2004
LeBron James 61 Miami Heat 03/03/2014
Shaquille O'Neal 61 Los Angeles Lakers 03/06/2000
Karl Malone 61 Utah Jazz 01/27/1990
George Mikan 61 Minneapolis Lakers 01/20/1952
Klay Thompson 60 Golden State Warriors 12/05/2016
Gilbert Arenas 60 Washington Wizards 12/17/2006
Allen Iverson 60 Philadelphia 76ers 02/12/2005
Larry Bird 60 Boston Celtics 03/12/1985
Tom Chambers 60 Phoenix Suns 03/24/1990
Bernard King 60 New York Knicks 12/25/1984
Anthony Davis 59 New Orleans Pelicans 02/21/2016
Jack Twyman 59 Cincinnati Royals 01/15/1960
Damian Lillard 59 Portland Trailblazers 04/08/2017
Purvis Short 59 Golden State Warriors 11/17/1984
Fred Brown 58 Seattle Supersonics 03/23/1974
Adrian Dantley 57 Utah Jazz 12/04/1982
Dominique Wilkins 57 Atlanta Hawks 12/10/1986
Deron Williams 57 Brooklyn Nets 03/04/2012
Richie Guerin 57 New York Knicks 12/11/1959
Bob Pettit* 57 Atlanta Hawks 02/18/1961
Lou Hudson 57 Atlanta Hawks 11/10/1969
Jerry Stackhouse 57 Detroit Pistons 04/03/2001
Calvin Murphy 57 Houston Rockets 03/18/1978
Michael Redd 57 Milwaukee Bucks 11/11/2006
Kyrie Irving 57 Cleveland Cavaliers 03/12/2015
Russell Westbrook 57 Oklahoma City Thunder 03/07/2017
Reggie Miller 57 Indiana Pacers 11/28/1992
Oscar Robertson 56 Cincinnati Royals 12/18/1964
Glen Rice 56 Miami Heat 04/15/1995
Kelly Tripucka 56 Detroit Pistons 01/29/1983
Chet Walker 56 Chicago Bulls 02/06/1972
Earl Monroe 56 Baltimore Bullets 02/13/1968
Kevin McHale 56 Boston Celtics 03/03/1985
DeMarcus Cousins 56 Sacramento Kings 01/25/2016
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar 55 Milwaukee Bucks 12/11/1971
Nate Archibald 55 Cincinnati Royals 02/23/1972
Jermaine O'Neal 55 Indiana Pacers 01/04/2005
Cliff Hagan 55 St. Louis Hawks 02/11/1962
Dwyane Wade 55 Miami Heat 04/12/2009
Tony Parker 55 San Antonio Spurs 11/05/2008
Brandon Jennings 55 Milwaukee Bucks 11/14/2009
Damon Stoudamire 54 Portland Trailblazers 01/14/2005
Alex English 54 Denver Nuggets 11/19/1985
Dave Bing 54 Detroit Pistons 02/21/1971
Elvin Hayes 54 San Diego Rockets 11/13/1968
Ray Allen 54 Seattle Supersonics 01/12/2007
Stephen Curry 54 Golden State Warriors 02/27/2013
Kevin Durant 54 Oklahoma City Thunder 01/17/2014
Michael Adams 54 Denver Nuggets 03/23/1991
Moses Malone 53 Houston Rockets 02/02/1982
Allan Houston 53 New York Knicks 02/16/2003
Gail Goodrich 53 Los Angeles Lakers 03/28/1975
Dale Ellis 53 Seattle Supersonics 11/09/1989
Tony Delk 53 Phoenix Suns 01/02/2001
Jimmy Butler 53 Chicago Bulls 01/14/2016
Willie Burton 53 Philadelphia 76ers 12/13/1994
Dirk Nowitzki 53 Dallas Mavericks 12/02/2004
Willis Reed 53 New York Knicks 11/01/1967
James Harden 53 Houston Rockets 12/31/2016
Tim Duncan 53 San Antonio Spurs 12/26/2001
Kemba Walker 52 Charlotte Hornets 01/18/2016
Jamal Crawford 52 New York Knicks 01/26/2007
John Wall 52 Washington Wizards 12/06/2016
Bob McAdoo 52* Buffalo Braves 03/17/1976
Andre Miller 52 Portland Trailblazers 01/30/2010
Joe Barry Carroll 52 Golden State Warriors 03/05/1983
Ray Williams 52 New Jersey Nets 04/17/1982
Billy Knight 52 Indiana Pacers 11/11/1980
Isaiah Thomas 52 Miami Heat 12/30/2016
Charles Smith 52 Los Angeles Clippers 12/01/1990
Brandon Roy 52 Portland Trailblazers 12/18/2008
Mike Newlin 52 New Jersey Nets 12/16/1979
Terry Cummings 52 San Antonio Spurs 01/31/1990
George Yardley 52 Detroit Pistons 02/04/1958
Hakeem Olajuwon 52 Houston Rockets 04/19/1990
Kevin Love 51 Minnesota Timberwolves 03/23/2012
Vince Carter 51* Toronto Raptors 12/23/2005
Antawn Jamison 51* Golden State Warriors 12/06/2000
Richard Hamilton 51 Detroit Pistons 12/27/2006
Spencer Haywood 51 Seattle Supersonics 01/03/1973
Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf 51 Denver Nuggets 12/07/1995
Vernon Maxwell 51 Houston Rockets 01/26/1991
Larry Kenon 51 San Antonio Spurs 03/30/1980
Sam Jones 51 Boston Celtics 10/29/1965
Freeman Williams 51 San Diego Rockets 01/19/1980
Truck Robinson 51 New Orleans Jazz 11/21/1978
Kiki Vandeweghe 51 Denver Nuggets 12/13/1983
Patrick Ewing 51 New York Knicks 03/24/1990
Geoff Petrie 51* Portland Trailblazers 03/16/1973
Chris Webber 51 Sacramento Kings 01/05/2001
Paul Pierce 50 Boston Celtics 02/15/2006
Jamal Mashbburn 50* New Orleans Pelicans 02/21/2003
Shareef Abdur-Rahim 50 Atlanta Hawks 11/23/2001
Cliff Robinson 50 Phoenix Suns 01/16/2000
Alonzo Mourning 50 Miami Heat 03/29/1996
Dana Barros 50 Philadelphia 76ers 03/14/1995
Rashard Lewis 50 Seattle Supersonics 10/31/2003
Tracy Murray 50 Washington Wizards 02/10/1998
Walt Wesley 50 Cleveland Cavaliers 02/19/1971
Amar'e Stoudemire 50 Phoenix Suns 01/02/2005
Jim Jackson 50 Dallas Mavericks 11/26/1994
Kevin Martin 50 Sacramento Kings 04/01/2009
Clyde Drexler 50 Portland Trailblazers 01/06/1989
Antoine Walker 49 Boston Celtics 01/07/1998
Mark Aguirre 49 Dallas Mavericks 01/28/1985
Bob Love 49* Chicago Bulls 02/06/1973
World B. Free 49* San Diego Clippers 12/16/1979
Otis Birdsong 49 Kansas City Kings 01/29/1980
Paul Westphal 49 Phoenix Suns 02/21/1980
Latrell Sprewell 49 New York Knicks 12/11/2001
Paul Arizin 49 Philadelphia Warriors 02/17/1961
Cazzie Russell 49 Golden State Warriors 12/11/1973
Paul George 48 Indiana Pacers 12/05/2015
Manu Ginobili 48 San Antonio Spurs 01/21/2005
Walt Bellamy 48* Washington Bullets 12/04/1963
Jeff Malone 48 Washington Bullets 03/04/1987
Bob Lanier 48 Detroit Pistons 11/28/1972
Charles Barkley 47 Philadelphia 76ers 02/09/1988
Alvan Adams 47 Phoenix Suns 02/22/1977
Danilo Gallinari 47 Denver Nuggets 04/10/2015
Scottie Pippen 47 Chicago Bulls 02/18/1997
Blake Griffin 47 Los Angeles Clippers 01/17/2011
Billy Cunningham 47 Philadelphia 76ers 12/17/1971
Kevin Garnett 47 Minnesota Timberwolves 12/04/2005
Chuck Person 47 Indiana Pacers 01/31/1989
Guy Rodgers 47 Golden State Warrios 11/19/1965
Mitch Richmond 47* Sacramento Kings 12/15/1995
Chris Mullin 47 Golden State Warriors 04/13/1989
Isiah Thomas 47 Detroit Pistons 12/13/1983
Andrew Wiggins 47 Minnesota Timberwolves 11/13/2016
Karl-Anthony Towns 47 Minnesota Timberwolves 11/30/2016
Stu Lantz 47 San Diego Rockets 10/20/1970
Darius Miles 47 Portland Trailblazers 04/19/2005
Magic Johnson 46 Los Angeles Lakers 12/23/1986
Maurice Lucas 46 Portland Trailblazers 01/12/1979
Paul Millsap 46 Utah Jazz 11/09/2010
Pau Gasol 46 Chicago Bulls 01/10/2015
Grant Hill 46 Detroit Pistons 02/08/1999
Rolando Blackman 46 Dallas Mavericks 03/12/1986
Bob Cousy 46 Boston Celtics 02/07/1960
Julius Erving* 45 Philadelphia 76ers 11/01/1980
Dwight Howard 45 Orlando Magic 01/12/2012
Joe Dumars 45 Detroit Pistons 03/12/1992
Tim Hardaway 45 Miami Heat 03/07/1997
Walt Hazzard 45* Seattle Supersonics 02/05/1968
Tommy Heinsohn 45 Boston Celtics 12/25/1961
Sam Perkins 45 Dallas Mavericks 04/12/1990
Walter Davis 45 Phoenix Suns 01/15/1987
Larry Nance 45 Phoenix Suns 12/20/1987
Eddie Johnson 45 Phoenix Suns 11/12/1988
Glenn Robinson 45 Milwaukee Bucks 02/25/2001
Kenny Anderson 45 New Jersey Nets 04/15/1994
Danny Ainge 45* Boston Celtics 03/04/1989
Chris Bosh 44 Miami Heat 01/20/2010
David West 44 New Orleans Hornets 12/29/2009
Larry Johnson 44 Charlotte Hornets 11/22/1995
Tom Van Arsdale 44 Cincinnati Royals 12/10/1995
Rik Smits 44 Indiana Pacers 02/13/1972
Wally Szczerbiak 44 Minnesota Timberwolves 04/13/2003
Kevin Johnson 44* Phoenix Suns 11/30/1991
Steve Francis 44 Houston Rockets 01/17/2003
Shawn Marion 44 Phoenix Suns 02/22/2006
Orlando Woolridge 44 Chicago Bulls 01/25/1986
Nick Van Exel 44* Denver Nuggets 11/01/2001
Walt Frazier 44 New York Knicks 11/02/1973
Brad Daugherty 44 Cleveland Cavaliers 04/15/1988
Elton Brand 44* Los Angeles Clippers 02/10/2006
LaMarcus Aldridge 44 Portland Trailblazers 01/23/2014
Gary Payton 44 Seattle Supersonics 03/04/2001
Jimmy Walker 44 Detroit Pistons 12/07/1971
Jalen Rose 44 Chicago Bulls 03/16/2002
John Havlicek 43* Boston Celtics 03/08/1970
Nick Young 43 Washington Wizards 01/11/2011
Chris Paul 43 Los Angeles Clippers 04/03/2009
Stephen Jackson 43 Charlotte Hornets 01/12/2010
Drazen Petrovic 43 New Jersey Nets 01/24/1993
Nate Thurmond 43 Golden State Warriors 02/24/1971
Jason Kidd 43 Phoenix Suns 03/29/2001
Danny Manning 43 Los Angeles Clippers 12/07/1993
Zach Randolph 43 Memphis Grizzlies 03/29/2007
Jerry Sloan 43 Chicago Bulls 03/05/1969
Ralph Sampson 43 Houston Rockets 11/17/1984
C.J. McCollum 43 Portland Trailblazers 01/01/2017
Sidney Monrief 43 Milwaukee Bucks 11/19/1983
Kyle Lowry 43 Toronto Raptors 02/26/2016
Hersey Hawkins 43 Philadelphia 76ers 11/13/1991
Mehmet Okur 43 Utah Jazz 01/12/2009
Steve Nash 42* Phoenix Suns 12/22/2006
Derrick Rose 42* Chicago Bulls 03/18/2011
Derrick Coleman 42 New Jersey Nets 02/15/1991
Peja Stojakovic 42 New Orleans Hornets 11/14/2006
Richard Jefferson 42 New Jersey Nets 12/22/2004
Artis Gilmore 42 Chicago Bulls 03/18/1977
Joe Johnson 42 Atlanta Hawks 03/07/2006
Gus Williams 42 Seattle Supersonics 01/15/1982
Rudy Tomjanovich 42 Houston Rockets 01/13/1974
Andrew Bynum 42 Los Angeles Lakers 01/21/2009
Shawn Kemp 42 Seattle Supersonics 12/10/1994
Zelmo Beaty 42* St. Louis Hawks 01/25/1968
Norm Van Lier 42 Chicago Bulls 01/12/1975
Anfernee Hardaway 42 Orlando Magic 11/08/1995
Marc Gasol 42 Memphis Grizzlies 01/25/2017
Rasheed Wallace 42 Portland Trailblazers 02/20/2001
DeMar DeRozan 42 Toronto Raptors 02/24/2017
Bradley Beal 42 Washington Wizards 11/21/2016
Frank Selvy 42 Milwaukee Hawks 12/02/1954
Giannis Antetokounmpo 41 Milwaukee Bucks 02/10/2017
Kawhi Leonard 41 San Antonio Spurs 01/21/2017
Jo Jo White 41 Boston Celtics 03/20/1977
Dee Brown 41* Boston Celtics 03/28/1995
Randy Smith 41 Buffalo Braves 03/02/1977
Andrea Bargnani 41 Toronto Raptors 12/08/2010
Sean Elliott 41 San Antonio Spurs 12/18/1992
Yao Ming 41 Houston Rockets 02/22/2004
Sleepy Floyd 41 Golden State Warriors 12/06/1986
Vin Baker 41* Seattle Supersonics 02/04/1998
Xavier McDaniel 41 Seattle Supersonics 12/01/1990
Steve Smith 41 Atlanta Hawks 01/30/1997
Alvin Robertson 41 San Antonio Spurs 12/21/1985
John Long 41 Detroit Pistons 12/13/1983
Kenny Smith 41 Houston Rockets 12/26/1993
Cuttino Mobley 41* Houston Rockets 01/24/2002
Robert Horry 40 Houston Rockets 11/16/1995
Otis Thorpe 40 Houston Rockets 12/07/1993
Quinn Buckner 40 Milwaukee Bucks 11/10/1979
Marques Johnson 40* Milwaukee Bucks 11/02/1980
Kevin Porter 40 New Jersey Nets 12/04/1977
J.J. Redick 40 Los Angeles Clippers 01/18/2016
Robert Parish 40 Boston Celtics 02/17/1981
Bobby Dandridge 40 Milwaukee Bucks 01/23/1976
Jeff Hornacek 40 Utah Jazz 11/23/1994
Zach LaVine 40 Minnesota Timberwolves 12/23/2016
Ron Harper 40 Cleveland Cavaliers 02/04/1987
Wayman Tisdale 40** Sacramento Kings 03/23/1993
Caron Butler 40 Washington Wizards 01/27/2008
Baron Davis 40* Golden State Warriors 01/18/2008
Sam Cassell 40 Milwaukee Bucks 03/03/2001
Don Nelson 40 Boston Celtics 02/25/1970
Metta World Peace 39* Sacramento Kings 02/13/2007
Mark Price 39 Cleveland Cavaliers 12/12/1992
Brook Lopez 39 New Jersey Nets 04/06/2011
Jack Sikma 39 Seattle Supersonics 11/13/1981
John Starks 39* New York Knicks 01/04/1994
Dikembe Mutombo 39 Denver Nuggets 02/03/1992
Chauncey Billups 39 Denver Nuggets 02/05/2010
Dennis Johnson 39 Phoenix Suns 02/15/1981
Gordon Hayward 39 Utah Jazz 04/07/2017
Kevin Willis 39 Atlanta Hawks 03/11/1986
Doug Collins 39 Philadelphia 76ers 03/09/1975
Dave Cowens 39 Boston Celtics 01/16/1976
Jeremy Lin 38* New York Knicks 12/10/2012
Phil Ford 38 Kansas City Kings 01/23/1981
Mike Conley 38 Memphis Grizzlies 01/30/2017
Dell Curry 38 Charlotte Hornets 11/02/1996
Bill Cartwright 38 New York Knicks 03/27/1984
Fat Lever 38 Denver Nuggets 02/09/1989
Micheal Ray Richardson 38 New Jersey Nets 10/30/1985
Donyell Marshall 38 Toronto Raptors 03/13/2005
James Worthy 38* Los Angeles Lakers 04/20/1989
Sam Bowie 38 New Jersey Nets 03/20/1991
Mychal Thompson 38 Portland Trailblazers 12/11/1981
Joe Smith 38 Golden State Warriors 01/08/1997
Bill Russell 37* Boston Celtics 12/17/1967
Rod Strickland 37 Washington Bullets 01/11/1998
Christian Laettner 37 Atlanta Hawks 12/26/1996
Doc Rivers 37 Atlanta Hawks 02/04/1988
Darryl Dawkins 36 New Jersey Nets 12/06/1983
Bill Walton 36 Portland Trailblazers 01/11/1976
Earl Boykins 36 Milwaukee Bucks 04/06/2007
Detlef Schrempf 36 Indiana Pacers 12/08/1992
Jamaal Wilkes 36* Los Angeles Lakers 01/05/1983
Kenyon Martin 35 New Jersey Nets 02/03/2003
Buck Williams 35 New Jersey Nets 02/27/1987
Cedric Maxwell 35 Boston Celtics 01/17/1979
Keith Van Horn 35 New Jersey Nets 02/16/1999
Swen Nater 35* San Diego Clippers 12/23/1979
Charles Oakley 35 Chicago Bulls 03/15/1986
Bill Laimbeer 35* Detroit Pistons 01/26/1985
Andre Iguodala 34 Philadelphia 76ers 01/24/2007
Terrell Brandon 34 Minnesota Timberwolves 03/25/2001
Mark Jackson 34 New York Knicks 11/18/1988
Dennis Rodman 34 Detroit Pistons 01/02/1991
Spud Webb 34 Sacramento Kings 04/21/1993
Lamar Odom 34* Los Angeles Lakers 10/31/2006
Tayshaun Prince 34 Detroit Pistons 11/01/2007
Toni Kukoc 34 Chicago Bulls 04/04/1996
Trent Tucker 34 New York Knicks 04/01/1987
Vlade Divac 34 Sacramento Kings 01/02/2001
John Stockton 34 Utah Jazz 03/17/1990
Arvydas Sabonis 33 Portland Trailblazers 01/04/1997
Andre Drummond 33 Detroit Pistons 12/18/2015
Rod Hundley 33 Los Angeles Lakers 02/28/1961
Jusef Nurkic 33 Portland Trailblazers 03/28/2017
Mitch Kupchak 32* Washington Bullets 11/24/1978
Don Chaney 32 Boston Celtics 02/28/1973
Shawn Bradley 32* Dallas Mavericks 04/14/1997
Rod Thorn 32 Seattle Supersonics 02/01/1968
Danny Ferry 32 Cleveland Cavaliers 04/11/1996
Draymond Green 31 Golden State Warriors 12/06/2014
Andrei Kirileno 31 Utah Jazz 02/17/2004
Paul Silas 31* Boston Celtics 10/12/1973
George Muresan 31 Washington Bullets 11/08/1995
Pervis Ellison 31* Washington Wizards 01/03/1992
Anthony Mason 31 Charlotte Hornets 03/31/2000
Antonio Davis 31 Toronto Raptors 04/06/2001
Wes Unseld 30 Washington Bullets 12/02/1969
Michael Olowokandi 30 Los Angeles Clippers 03/08/2002
Paul Pressey 30* Milwaukee Bucks 03/08/1986
Ernie Grunfeld 30* New York Knicks 03/25/1985
Kwame Brown 30 Washington Wizards 03/17/2004
Emeka Okafor 30 Charlotte Hornets 03/12/2005
Derek Fisher 29 Golden State Warriors 01/15/2005
Tom Gola 29 New York Knicks 11/30/1963
Tyson Chandler 28 New York Knicks 11/26/2012
Kent Benson 28 Milwaukee Bucks 04/06/1979
JaVale McGee 28 Washington Wizards 03/27/2011
Boban Marjanovic 27 Detroit Pistons 04/07/2017
Rick Adelman 27 Portland Trailblazers 01/05/1971
Darko Milicic 25 Minnesota Timberwolves 12/14/2010
Luke Walton 25 Los Angeles Lakers 12/08/2006
Jon Koncak 25 Atlanta Hawks 01/09/1988
Greg Ostertag 25 Utah Jazz 04/18/2001
Muggsy Bogues 24** Toronto Raptors 03/03/2000
Greg Oden 24* Portland Trailblazers 11/23/2009
Matt Guokas 24 Kansas City Kings 03/24/1973
Steve Kerr 24 Cleveland Cavaliers 04/17/1992
Ben Wallace 23 Detroit Pistons 12/11/2010
LaRue Martin 22 Portland Trailblazers 01/03/1975
Anthony Bennett 20 Minnesota Timberwolves 11/21/2014
Manute Bol 18* Philadelphia 76ers 03/03/1993
Keith Closs 15 Los Angeles Clippers 12/12/1997

For players that hit their career high in multiple games — like Muggsy Bogues’ career high 24 points three times — we marked each additional time with an asterisk (e.g. 24**). In these rare situations, we went with the most recent date the player set that career high.

Compiling and combing through this list, we came across some worthwhile stories and fun little facts about how some of these players got to their career highs. Here’s a small sampling of the things noticed.

The Highest Scoring NBA Game Ever Yields Career Highs

During a three overtime marathon that yielded the highest-scoring game in NBA history, three NBA players would hit their career highs on that night. On December 13, 1983, the Denver Nuggets defeated the Detroit Pistonns 185-184. Kiki Vandeweghe (51 points), Isiah Thomas (47) and John Long (41) would each set their single game point milestone.

Scoring Racers: Thompson/Gervin and The Admiral

On April 9th, 1978, the NBA scoring race came down to this last day of the season between David Thompson and George Gervin and both players would score their NBA career high. Thompson would go on to take the crown by scoring his career high of 73 points for the Denver Nuggets. For his part, Gervin scored 63 for the San Antonio Spurs.

In 1997, San Antonio’s David Robinson scored a career 71 points in his scoring race with Shaquille O’Neal. From NBA.com:

Entering the game trailing Shaquille O’Neal by 33 points in the race for the NBA scoring title, David scored 71 points on the Clippers and won the scoring title in the very last game of the regular season.

Overkill much, Admiral? David Robinson would finish the season with an average of 29.8 points annihilating O’Neal’s 29.3 points average.


Vince and Antawn Forever Connected

Both Vince Carter and Antawn Jamison‘s career highs are both 51 points. And they both hit that career high twice in their careers.

This ia all very fitting as both came out of the same 1998 Draft in which they were drafted right next to one another (Jamison at #4 and Carter at #5). They came into the draft as North Carolina teammates and were traded for one another on draft night! In the case of Jamison, his career high night of 51 points; he wasn’t the only one to score 51 points in the same game. His total was matched by Kobe Bryant, who scored 51 for the Lakers — which as we know is 30 short of his career high.

Manute Bol’s Unexpected Career High

When Manute Bol scored his career high 18 points, you would think that the majority of those points came in the painted area on putbacks or layups. And you would be wrong. Completely wrong. Dead wrong. To get to his career-high 18 points, Bol hit six three pointers… all in one half.

Bol would hit half of his three attempts in that game; 6-12. Yes, he shot twelve three-pointers in one game.

Jeremy Lin is a Hit on Broadway

We all know about “Linsanity” by now and it’s no surprise that Jeremy Lin set his career high of 38 points during that two week stretch. Especially memorable was during a nationally televised game against Kobe Bryant and the Los Angeles Lakers. Lin didn’t disappoint the crowd at Madison Square Garden; hitting 13 of 22 shots and pouring in 38 points as the Knicks defeated the Lakers 93-85.

Tony Delk and Vlade Divac Go Off On Another

What do these two have in common? They both set their career highs against one another. As mentioned, TONY DELK SCORED 53 POINTS IN A GAME! Delk hit 20 shots that night and took only 27 against the Kings. And Delk’s unexpected outburst was the same game that Vlade Divac hit his career high in points with a less-than-impressive 34 points.

Even On His Career Night, Bad Karma Follows Dwight Howard

When Dwight Howard recorded his career high 45 points against the Golden State Warriors, one in which Orlando won the game 117-109, there was still plenty to gripe about Howard that night. Even though he scored 45 points, the notoriously-bad free throw shooter could have had MUCH more as he shot an NBA-record 39 free throw attempts. Howard would miss 18 of those 39 free throws.

That’s all we got for now. With a list spanning every decade, there’s a lot of  players, numbers and data, so look for more posts to come originating from this compilation. We’ll also continually update the list as we notice missing players (or are told). In the meantime, here’s some related posts around career highs for you to snack on:


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