Kobe vs. LeBron vs. Jordan vs. Durant vs. Steph — playoff scoring lows

LeBron vs. Kobe vs. Mike vs. KD…

“would you looka here readjack..Game 7, and the Bigs for the #Lakers had to come to the rescue once again…hmmmm”

That tweet came from my pal Shaun Davis as part of an ongoing discussion between the two of us concerning Kobe, LeBron, and the definition of hoops greatness. Mr. Davis was referring to Kobe Bryant’s 17-point Game 7 performance against the Denver Nuggets Saturday night, a truly poor showing for one of the League’s all-time greats, especially when you consider that Kevin Garnett — with one more NBA season to his name (and his legs) — posted a 28-14 with 5 blocks to close out Atlanta two nights before.

Shaun’s tweet got me thinking about Kobe, LeBron, and the gold standard Mr. Jordan, and put me in a mood for some statistical research concerning the low scoring playoff games of the League’s premier star and his two high profile successors. The sample section is every postseason game (through the first round of this year’s playoffs) in which the player in question played at least 30 minutes.

I’m going to leave the conclusions to you, the reader, and simply provide the findings. All stats are from Basketball Reference. Hit the game finder for your own discoveries.

— JACK

*** UPDATED 21 MAY 2014 ***

I am updating this post today, in the middle of the playoffs, because why not? Also, to spice things up, I am adding Kevin Durant along with three categories. I will update again after the Finals.

*** UPDATED 29 MAY 2014 ***

LeBron set his new playoff scoring low last night with 7 points in Miami’s 93-90 loss. However, he only played 24 minutes, which is why I am leaving him off this list. Here is the box score.

*** UPDATED 2 JUNE 2016 ***

Amazing how quickly the NBA has changed. When I last updated this post, Steph Curry was a new All-Star scoring 24 points per game. Now he’s the two-time defending MVP and a member of the 30 ppg club. As such, we need to get him in here. Updated through Game 1 of the 2016 Finals.

*** UPDATED 21 MAY 2017 ***

LeBron threw up an 11-pointer tonight in Game 3 of the East Finals vs. Boston. Time to update.

And of course, KD and Steph are now teammates. I’ll update again after the Finals.

Okay, let’s get to it.

PLAYOFF GAMES UNDER 20 POINTS, 30 MINUTES PLAYED

JORDAN: 6 out of 178, 3.37%

BRYANT: 32 out of 198, 16.16% (original post: 31 out of 193, 16.06%)

JAMES: 23 out of 210, 10.95% (2014 post: 19 out of 149, 12.75%) (original post: 13 out of 97, 13.40%)

DURANT: 8 out of 95, 8.42% (2014 post: 4 out of 67, 5.97%)

CURRY: 15 out of 66, 22.73%

LOWEST SCORING PLAYOFF GAME, 30 MINUTES PLAYED

JORDAN: 15 points — Round 2 Game 2 (R2G2) at New York 1989 (loss)

BRYANT: 8 points — R4G5 at Indiana 2000 (loss)

JAMES: 8 points — R4G4 at Dallas, 2011 (loss)

DURANT: 11 points — R2G6 at Memphis, 2011 (loss)

CURRY: 9 points — R2G5 at San Antonio, 2013 (loss)

LOWEST SCORING PLAYOFF GAME — win

JORDAN: 17 points — R3G3 at Orlando, 1996

BRYANT: 11 points — R1G2 vs New Orleans, 2011

JAMES: 15 points — R2G6 at Chicago, 2015

DURANT: 15 points — R1G4 at Memphis, 2014

CURRY: 11 points — R4G1 vs. Cleveland, 2016

LOWEST SCORING PLAYOFF GAME — series clinching win

JORDAN: 22 points — R4G6 vs Seattle, 1996

BRYANT: 14 points — R2G7 vs Houston, 2009

JAMES: 15 points — R2G6 at Chicago, 2015

DURANT: 18 points — R2G4 at Utah, 2017

CURRY: 22 points — R1G6 vs. Denver, 2013

LOWEST SCORING PLAYOFF GAME — Game 7

JORDAN: 28 points — Round 3 vs Indiana, 1998

BRYANT: 14 points — Round 2 vs Houston, 2009

JAMES: 27 points — Round 2 at Detroit, 2006 (loss), and Finals at Golden State, 2016 (win)

DURANT: 27 points — Round 3 at Golden State, 2016

CURRY: 17 points — Finals vs. Cleveland, 2016 (loss)

LOWEST SCORING PLAYOFF GAME — facing elimination

JORDAN: 19 points — R1G3 vs Boston, 1986 (loss)

BRYANT: 14 points — R2G7 vs Houston, 2009

JAMES: 21 points — R4G6 vs Dallas, 2011 (loss)

DURANT: 21 points — R2G5 vs. Memphis, 2013 (loss)

CURRY: 17 points — Finals vs. Cleveland, 2016 (loss)

PLAYOFF GAMES UNDER 25 POINTS — in an MVP season

JORDAN: 11 games out of 88, 12.50% — low game: 17 points

BRYANT: 5 games out of 21, 23.81% — low game: 17 points

JAMES: 23 games out of 71, 23.94% — low game: 15 points (twice)

DURANT: 1 game out of 14, 7.14% — low game: 15 points

CURRY: 13 games out of 36, 36.11% — low game: 11 points

PLAYOFF GAMES UNDER 25 POINTS — in a Finals MVP season

JORDAN: 15 games out of 116, 12.93% — low game: 17 points

BRYANT: 12 games out of 46, 26.09% — low game: 12 points

JAMES: 23 games out of 67, 34.33% — low game: 15 points (23/67)

DURANT: n/a

CURRY: n/a

FINALS GAMES UNDER 25 POINTS — in a Finals MVP season

JORDAN: 4 games out of 35, 11.43% — low game: 22 points (twice)

BRYANT: 2 games out of 12, 16.67% — low game: 21 points

JAMES: 5 games out of 19, 26.32% — low game: 15 points

DURANT: n/a

CURRY: n/a

LOWEST SCORING NBA FINALS GAME

JORDAN: 22 points — Game 6 vs Seattle, 1996 & Game 4 at Utah, 1997 (loss)

BRYANT: 8 points — Game 5 at Indiana, 2000 (loss)

JAMES: 8 points — Game 4 at Dallas, 2011 (loss)

DURANT: 25 points — Game 3 at Miami, 2012 (loss)

CURRY: 11 points — Game 1 vs. Cleveland, 2016

LOWEST SCORING NBA FINALS WIN

JORDAN: 22 points — Game 6 vs Seattle, 1996

BRYANT: 19 points — Game 4 at Philadelphia, 2001

JAMES: 17 points — Game 3 at Dallas, 2011, and Game 2 vs. San Antonio, 2013

DURANT: 36 points — Game 1 vs. Miami, 2012

CURRY: 11 points — Game 1 vs. Cleveland, 2016

Photo credit.

More basketball coverage from Jack M Silverstein (@readjack)

How The GOAT Was Built: 6 Life Lessons From the 1996 Chicago Bulls (eBook)

How to fix the NBA’s MVP problem (at 16 Wins a Ring)

The true story of Jerry Krause and the breakup of the Bulls (at BlogABull)

The NBA’s True Mt. Rushmore

The Jordan v. LeBron debate

The Jordan v. Kobe debate

The Kobe v. LeBron debate: “More than just a puppet” and “Becoming Kobe

My Chicago Bulls archives

My RedEye archives

My LeBron archives

Advertisements

6 Replies to “Kobe vs. LeBron vs. Jordan vs. Durant vs. Steph — playoff scoring lows”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s