Here’s an interesting thing: If you make a search on Basketball Reference with the criteria > 10 PPG, > 6 RPG, > 6 APG, > 2 SPG you will see the most well rounded guards/forwards: Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Lebron James, Russell Westbrook, Jason Kidd, Scottie Pippen, Walt Frazier, Rick Barry, Fat Lever etc these are the players most likely to get a quadruple double with steals.
Getting 10 steals is remarkably difficult though; I think its interesting that Jordan, Magic, Kidd, Lebron etc never got a quadruple double before.
Using the criteria for blocks, you have to set it to > 10 PPG, > 6 RPG, > 4 APG, > 2 BPG and you can see some of the most well rounded big men: David Robinson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Kevin Garnett, Bob Lanier all appear on the list pretty frequently. Wilt Chamberlain would have also been on there. Curiously, none of them except Robinson have produced a quadruple double, and Hakeem doesn’t appear on the list. Kareem had several seasons of statlines like 27/14/5/4 so I’m surprised he never had a quadruple double too.
Modern day, players are averaging triple doubles left and right so I will start with the most likely candidates: Anthony Davis, Draymond Green, Lebron James, Russell Westbrook, Ben Simmons would be my picks. Davis is currently the player most similar to Hakeem and Robinson too.
Now that the NBA season has ended (and what a season it was!) now comes to time to revisit the top 100 greatest players of all time, as well as the top NBA players by position. I’ve decided to discard my old post on this since that post was made back in 2013, and this one has been updated through the new NBA season, with top 25 per position making a total of 100 players here.
These are all gleaned by my composite score for each player, all ranked by tallying their stats and awards together. You can download it here
I’ve also agreed with Rick Barry’s assertion that we should judge NBA players by position, because how can you compare Michael Jordan and Wilt Chamberlain and definitively say one is better than the other when they play totally different positions? You can’t. So let’s go by position. Here’s the new list:
Greatest white players in NBA history 1. Larry Bird 2. Jerry West 3. John Havlicek 4. Bob Pettit 5. Bob Cousy 6. John Stockton 7. Rick Barry 8. Dirk Nowitzki 9. Steve Nash 10. Bill Walton 11. George Mikan 12. Dolph Schayes 13. Paul Arizin 14. Dave Cowens 15. Dan Issel 16. Kevin McHale 17. Billy Cunningham 18. Jerry Lucas 19. Pete Maravich 20. Neil Johnston
All-NBA teams for 2K18 simulation 1st team – Lakers uniform range: 92-99
Starting: Magic Johnston, Kobe Bryant, Lebron James, Karl Malone, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Backup: Jerry West, Tracy McGrady, Elgin Baylor, Anthony Davis, Shaq Reserve: Pau Gasol, James Worthy, George Mikan
Starting: Magic Johnson, Kobe Bryant, Lebron James, Elvin Hayes, Kareem Abdul Jabbar Backup: Walt Frazier, Jerry West, Elgin Baylor, Dan Issel, Shaq Reserve: James Worthy, Tracy McGrady, George Mikan
2nd team – Celtics uniform range 88-98
Starting: Bob Cousy, Ray Allen, Larry Bird, Kevin Garnett, Bill Russell Backup: Dennis Johnson, Sam Jones, John Havlicek, Kevin McHale, Dave Cowens Reserve: Tom Heinsohn, Paul Pierce, Robert Parish
Starting: Bob Cousy, James Harden, Larry Bird, Kevin Garnett, Bill Russell Backup: Dennis Johnson, Sam Jones, John Havlicek, Kevin McHale, Dave Cowens Reserve: Ray Allen, Paul Pierce, Tom Heinsohn
3rd team – 76ers uniform range 88-98
Starting: Oscar Robertson, Allen Iverson, Julius Erving, George McGinnis, Moses Malone Backup: Russell Westbrook, Clyde Drexler, Billy Cunningham, Jerry Lucas, Dwight Howard Reserve: Bobby Jones, Horace Grant, Dikembe Mutombo
Starting: John Stockton, Allen Iverson, Julius Erving, Bob Pettit, Wilt Chamberlain Backup: Oscar Robertson, Clyde Drexler , Billy Cunningham, Spencer Haywood, Moses Malone Reserve: Russell Westbrook, Dominique Wilkins, Bob McAdoo
4th team – Bulls uniform range 91-99
Starting: Jason Kidd, Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Dan Issel, Hakeem Olajuwon Backup: Walt Frazier, Dwayne Wade, Connie Hawkins, Spencer Haywood, Artis Gilmore Reserve: Tiny Archibald, Dominique Wilkins, Wes Unseld
Starting: Jason Kidd, Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Karl Malone, Patrick Ewing Backup: Tiny Archibald, David Thompson, George McGinnis, Chris Webber, Wes Unseld Reserve: Vince Carter, Alex English, Artis Gilmore
5th team – Warriors uniform range 91-98
Starting: Steph Curry, James Harden, Kevin Durant, Bob Pettit, Wilt Chamberlain Backup: John Stockton, Sidney Moncrief, Rick Barry, Elvin Hayes, Patrick Ewing Reserve: Chris Webber, Jack Sikma, Nate Thurmond
Starting: Steph Curry, Dwayne Wade, Kevin Durant, Dirk Nowitzki, Hakeem Olajuwon Backup: Chris Paul, Mitch Richmond, Rick Barry, Jerry Lucas, Nate Thurmond Reserve: Tim Hardaway, Connie Hawkins, Bob Lanier
6th team – Spurs uniform 89-98
Starting: Chris Paul, Michael Cooper, George Gervin, Tim Duncan, David Robinson Backup: Steve Nash, Manu Ginobili, Kawhi Leonard, Dirk Nowitzki, Willis Reed Reserve: Tony Parker, Chris Bosh, Carmelo Anthony
Starting: Steve Nash, George Gervin, Kawhi Leonard, Tim Duncan, David Robinson Backup: Gary Payton, Sidney Moncrief, Carmelo Anthony, Anthony Davis, Bill Walton Reserve: Tony Parker, Blake Griffin, Alonzo Mourning
7th team – Pistons uniform
Starting: Isiah Thomas, Joe Dumars, Adrian Dantley, Dave Debusschere, Bob Lanier Backup: Gary Payton, Mitch Richmond, Giannis, Dennis Rodman, Bill Walton Reserve: Chauncey Billups, Ben Wallace, Alex English
Starting: Isiah Thomas, Joe Dumars, Grant Hill, Dave Debusschere, Willis Reed Backup: Dave Bing, Pete Maravich, Adrian Dantley, Amare Stoudemire, Dwight Howard Reserve: Bernard King, Chauncey Billups, Pau Gasol
Note: All players on these teams are top 125 players all time. Charles Barkley, Hal Greer, Dolph Schayes, Paul Arizin, Neil Johnston, Bill Sharman, Mel Daniels, Roger Brown, Reggie Miller are all missing from the game due to licensing issue else they might have appeared on here.
All-NBA team for each decade 1950s: PG: Bob Cousy/Slater Martin SG: Bill Sharman/Richie Guerin SF: Paul Arizin/George Yardley PF: Bob Pettit /Dolph Schayes C: George Mikan/Neil Johnston
1960s: PG: Oscar Robertson/Dave Bing SG: Jerry West/Hal Greer SF: Elgin Baylor/Billy Cunningham PF: Willis Reed/Jerry Lucas C: Wilt Chamberlain/Bill Russell
1970s: PG: Walt Frazier/Tiny Archibald SG: John Havlicek/Pete Maravich SF: Rick Barry/Bob McAdoo PF: Elvin Hayes/Dave Cowens C: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar/Bill Walton
1980s: PG: Magic Johnson/Isiah Thomas SG: George Gervin/Sidney Moncrief SF: Larry Bird/Dominique Wilkins PF: Julius Erving/Kevin McHale C: Moses Malone/Patrick Ewing
1990s: PG: John Stockton/Gary Payton SG: Michael Jordan/Mitch Richmond SF: Scottie Pippen/Clyde Drexler PF: Karl Malone/Charles Barkley C: Hakeem Olajuwon/David Robinson
2010s: PG: Chris Paul/Stephen Curry SG: James Harden/Russell Westbrook SF: Kevin Durant/Kawhi Leonard PF: Lebron James/Giannis Antetokounmpo C: Anthony Davis/Dwight Howard
2K teams 1960s team (Celtics uni): Oscar,Cousy, West, Greer/Sam Jones, Baylor, Cunningham, Pettit,Lucas, Wilt, Russell, Heinsohn, Reed 1970s team (Knicks uni): Frazier, Archibald, Maravich, Thompson, Barry, Hondo, Hayes, Issel, Cowens, Walton, Thurmond, Gervin 1980s team (Lakers uni): Magic, Isiah, Moncrief, Dumars, Bird, Dr J, McHale, Barkley, Moses, Kareem, Dennis Johnson, Wilkins 1990s team (Bulls uni): Stockton, Payton, Jordan, Drexler, Pippen, Hill, Malone, Rodman, Hakeem, Robinson, Ewing, Richmond 2000s team (Spurs uni): Kidd, Nash, Kobe, Iverson, Pierce, Melo, Duncan, Garnett, Shaq, Dwight, Tmac, Webber 2010s team (Warriors uni): Chris Paul, Steph Curry, Wade, Harden, Lebron, Durant, Dirk, Davis, Embiid, Cousins, Westbrook, Giannis
2K Divison teams All time Atlantic Team: Starting: Bob Cousy, John Havlicek, Larry Bird, Charles Barkley (76ers) / Kevin McHale (Celtics), Bill Russell (Celtics) Backup: Jason Kidd (Nets), Allen Iverson (76ers), Julius Erving (76ers), Jerry Lucas (Royals, Knicks), Wilt Chamberlain (76ers) Reserve: Walt Frazier (Knicks), Willis Reed (Knicks), Sam Jones (Celtics)
All time Central Team: Starting: Oscar Robertson (Bucks), Michael Jordan (Bulls), Scottie Pippen (Bulls), Dennis Rodman (Pistons), Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (Bucks) Backup: Isiah Thomas (Pistons), Joe Dumars (Pistons), Bob Dandridge (Bucks), Dave Debusschere (Pistons), Artis Gilmore (Bulls) Reserve: George McGinnis (Pacers), Bob Lanier (Pistons) / Mel Daniels (Pacers), Sidney Moncrief (Bucks)
All time Southeast Team: Starting: Penny Hardaway (Magic), Dwayne Wade (Heat), Lebron James (Heat), Bob Pettit (Hawks), Dwight Howard (Magic) Backup: Tim Hardaway (Heat), Tracy McGrady (Magic), Dominique Wilkins (Hawks), Elvin Hayes (Bullets), Wes Unseld (Bullets) Reserve: Earl Monroe (Wizards), Alonzo Mourning (Heat), Chris Bosh (Heat)
All time Northwest Team: Starting: John Stockton (Jazz), Clyde Drexler (Blazers), Kevin Durant (Thunder), Karl Malone (Jazz), Bill Walton (Blazers) Backup: Russell Westbrook (Thunder), Ray Allen (Sonics), Carmelo Anthony (Nuggets), Kevin Garnett (Wolves), Jack Sikma (Sonics) Reserve: Gary Payton (Sonics), Dan Issel (Nuggets), Spencer Haywood (Sonics)
All time Pacific Team: Starting: Magic Johnson (Lakers), Kobe Bryant (Lakers), Rick Barry (Warriors), Chris Webber (Kings), Shaq (Center) Backup: Jerry West (Lakers), Michael Cooper (Lakers), Elgin Baylor (Lakers), Amar’e Stoudemire (Suns), Bob McAdoo (Clippers) Reserve: Steph Curry (Warriors), Steve Nash (Suns), Connie Hawkins (Suns)
All time Southwest Team: Starting: Chris Paul (Pelicans), James Harden (Rockets), George Gervin (Spurs), Tim Duncan (Spurs), Hakeem Olajuwon (Rockets) Backup: Tony Parker (Spurs), Manu Ginobili (Spurs), Kawhi Leonard (Spurs), Dirk Nowitzki (Mavs), Moses Malone (Rockets) Reserve: David Robinson (Spurs), Anthony Davis (Pelicans), Pau Gasol (Grizzlies)
Greatest players for each NBA team Boston Celtics – Bill Russell – 11 rings, 12 Finals, 5 MVPs with the Celtics Brooklyn Nets – Julius Erving – 2 rings, 3 Finals, 3 MVPs with the Nets New York Knicks – Willis Reed – 2 rings, 3 Finals, 1 MVP, 2 Finals MVPs with the Knicks Philadelphia 76ers – Wilt Chamberlain – 1 ring, 1 Finals, 3 MVPs with the 76ers Toronto Raptors – Kawhi Leonard – 1 ring, 1 Finals, 1 Finals MVP with the Raptors Dallas Mavericks – Dirk Nowitzki – 1 ring, 2 Finals, 1 MVP, 1 Finals MVP with the Mavs Houston Rockets – Hakeem Olajuwon – 2 rings, 3 Finals, 1 MVP, 2 Finals MVPs with the Rockets Memphis Grizzlies – Marc Gasol New Orleans Pelicans – Anthony Davis San Antonio Spurs – Tim Duncan – 5 rings, 6 Finals, 2 MVPs, 3 Finals MVPs with the Spurs Chicago Bulls – Michael Jordan – 6 rings, 6 Finals, 5 MVPs, 6 Finals MVPs with the Bulls Cleveland Cavaliers – Lebron James – 1 ring, 5 Finals, 2 MVPs, 1 Finals MVP with the Cavs Detroit Pistons – Isiah Thomas – 2 rings, 3 Finals, 1 Finals MVP with the Pistons Indiana Pacers – Mel Daniels – 3 rings, 4 Finals, 2 MVPs with the Pacers Milwaukee Bucks – Kareem Abdul-Jabbar – 1 ring, 2 Finals, 3 MVPs, 1 Finals MVP with the Bucks Denver Nuggets – Alex English Minnesota Timberwolves – Kevin Garnett – 1 MVP with the Timberwolves Oklahoma City Thunder – Kevin Durant – 1 Finals, 1 MVP with the OKC Portland Trail Blazers – Bill Walton – 1 Finals, 1 MVP, 1 Finals MVP with the Trailblazers Utah Jazz – Karl Malone – 2 Finals, 2 MVPs with the Jazz Atlanta Hawks – Bob Pettit (St Louis Hawks) – 1 ring, 4 Finals, 2 MVPs with the Hawks Charlotte Hornets – Kemba Walker Miami Heat – Dwyane Wade – 3 rings, 5 Finals, 1 Finals MVP with the Heat Orlando Magic – Dwight Howard – 1 Finals with the Magic Washington Wizards – Wes Unseld (Baltimore Bullets) – 1 ring, 4 Finals, 1 MVP, 1 Finals MVP with the Bullets Golden State Warriors – Stephen Curry – 3 rings, 5 Finals, 2 MVPs with the Warriors Los Angeles Clippers – Chris Paul Los Angeles Lakers – Magic Johnson – 5 rings, 9 Finals, 3 MVPs, 3 Finals MVPs with the Lakers Phoenix Suns – Steve Nash – 2 MVPs with the Suns Sacramento Kings – Oscar Robertson (Cincinnati Royals)- 1 MVP with the Royals
Top 10 what if? careers in NBA history 1. Bill Walton (ankle injuries limited him, but when healthy was MVP, Finals MVP and champion) 2. Arvydas Sabonis (came into NBA post prime but was supposedly one of the most skilled big men ever like a 7’3 foot Hakeem) 3. Maurice Stokes (averaged 16 points and 17 rebounds a game before hitting his head on the floor and becoming a quadriplegic for the rest of his life 🙁 ) 4. David Thompson (was pre-Michael Jordan basically before he got into coke problems in the late 70s; scored 73 points in a game before) 5. Grant Hill (was pre-Lebron James before ankle injuries) 6. Drazen Petrovic (a rising all star shooting guard before he died in a car accident only 28 years old) 7. Bernard King (averaged 33 points a game and was on his way becoming a top forward in the 80s before he tore his ACL and wasnt the same again) 8. Penny Hardaway (a Magic-like player who was one of the top point guards before injuries got to him) 9. Derrick Rose (former MVP who was going to be one of the top point guards of his generation but tore his ACL and wasnt the same again) 10.Tracy McGrady (could have been better than Kobe and Iverson if he didn’t have so many back injuries) Honorable mentions: Yao Ming, Len Bias (never played in NBA but died of cocaine overdose before he could have), Pete Maravich (at his peak before suffering knee injuries), Ralph Sampson
Top 10 #1 draft picks all time
1. Kareem Abdul Jabbar (1969) 2. Lebron James (2003) 3. Magic Johnson (1979) 4. Tim Duncan (1997) 5. Shaquille O’Neal (1992) 6. Hakeem Olajuwon (1984) 7. David Robinson (1987) 8. Allen Iverson (1996) 9. Elgin Baylor (1958) 10. Dwight Howard (2004)
Top 20 greatest college players of all time
Kareem Abdul Jabbar (26.4 PPG, 15.5 RPG)
Bill Walton (20.3 PPG, 15.7 RPG)
Bill Russell (20.7 PPG, 20.3 RPG)
Pete Maravich (44.2 PPG, 6.4 RPG, 5.1 APG)
Oscar Robertson (33.8 PPG, 15.2 RPG)
David Thompson (26.8 PPG, 8.1 RPG)
Jerry Lucas (24.3 PPG, 17.2 RPG)
Tom Gola (20.9 PPG, 18.7 RPG)
Elvin Hayes (31 PPG, 17.2 RPG)
Larry Bird (30.3 PPG, 13.3 RPG, 4.6 APG)
Christian Laettner (16.6 PPG, 7.8 RPG, 1.8 APG)
Ralph Sampson (16.9 PPG, 11.4 RPG)
Wilt Chamberlain (29.9 PPG, 18.3 RPG)
Shaq (21.6 PPG, 13.5 RPG, 1.7 APG)
Tim Duncan (16.5 PPG, 12.3 RPG, 2.3 APG)
Magic Johnson (17.1 PPG, 7.6 RPG, 7.9 APG)
Jerry West (24.8 PPG, 13.3 RPG, 2.8 APG)
Artis Gilmore (24.3 PPG, 22.7 RPG)
Tyler Hansborough (20.2 PPG, 8.6 RPG, 1.1 APG)
Dan Issel (25.8 PPG, 12.9 RPG, 1.2 APG)
Top 20 greatest offensive players of all time
1. Michael Jordan (10x scoring titles, 12x seasons 25pts+) 2. Wilt Chamberlain (7x scoring titles, 10x seasons 25pts+) 3. Kobe Bryant (2x scoring titles, 12x seasons 25pts+) 4. Jerry West (1x scoring title, 11x seasons 25pts+) 5. Allen Iverson (4x scoring titles, 11x seasons 25pts+) 6. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (2x scoring titles, 10x seasons 25pts+) 7. Karl Malone (12x seasons 25pts+) 8. Kevin Durant (4x scoring titles, 9x seasons 25pts+) 9. Dominique Wilkins (1x scoring title, 10x seasons 25pts+) 10. George Gervin (4x scoring titles, 8x seasons 25pts+) 11. Lebron James (1x scoring title, 13x seasons 25pts+) 12. Shaquille O’Neal (2x scoring titles, 10x seasons 25pts+) 13. Elgin Baylor (8x seasons 25pts+) 14. Oscar Robertson (9x seasons 25pts+) 15. Rick Barry (2x scoring titles, 8x seasons 25pts+) 16. Bob Pettit (2x scoring titles, 7x seasons 25pts+) 17. Bob McAdoo (3x scoring titles, 7x seasons 25pts+) 18. Adrian Dantley (2x scoring titles, 8x seasons 25pts+) 19 Carmelo Anthony (1x scoring title, 9x seasons 25pts+) 20. Alex English (1x scoring title, 8x seasons 25pts+)
Top 20 Greatest NBA teams of all time 1. 1996 Chicago Bulls (72-10, 15-3, HOFers: Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Dennis Rodman) 2. 2017 Golden State Warriors (67-15, 16-1, HOFers: Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green) 3. 1997 Chicago Bulls (69-13, 15-4, HOFers: Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Dennis Rodman) 4. 1967 Philadelphia 76ers (68-13, 15-4, HOFers: Wilt Chamberlain, Billy Cunningham, Hal Greer, Chet Walker) 5. 1972 LA Lakers (69-13, 12-3, HOFers: Jerry West, Wilt Chamberlain, Gail Goodrich, Elgin Baylor) 6. 1986 Boston Celtics (67-15, 15-3, HOFers: Larry Bird, Robert Parish, Kevin McHale, Dennis Johnson, Bill Walton) 7. 1971 Milwaukee Bucks (66-16, 12-2, HOFers: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Oscar Robertson) 60 8. 1987 LA Lakers (65-17, 15-3, HOFers: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson, James Worthy) 60 9. 1992 Chicago Bulls (67-15, 15-7, HOFers: Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen)60 10. 1983 Philadelphia 76ers (65-17, 12-1, HOFers: Julius Erving, Moses Malone) 59 11. 2013 Miami Heat (66-16, 16-7, HOFers: Lebron James, Dwayne Wade, Chris Bosh, Ray Allen) 59 12. 2009 LA Lakers (65-15, 16-7, HOFers: Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol)59 13. 1989 Detroit Pistons (63-19, 15-2, HOFers: Adrian Dantley, Joe Dumars, Isiah Thomas, Dennis Rodman)57 14. 2008 Boston Celtics (66-16, 16-10, HOFers: Rajon Rondo, Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen, Paul Pierce) 56 15. 1985 LA Lakers (62-20, 15-4, HOFers: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson, Bob McAdoo, Jamaal Wilkes, James Worthy) 53 16. 1999 San Antonio Spurs (37-13, 15-2, HOFers: Tim Duncan, David Robinson) 53 17. 1965 Boston Celtics (62-18, 8-4, HOFers: John Havlicek, Tom Heinsohn, KC Jones, Sam Jones, Satch Sanders, Bill Russell) 18. 2001 LA Lakers (56-26, 15-1, HOFers: Kobe Bryant, Shaquille O’Neal) 19. 1970 New York Knicks (60-22, 12-7, HOFers: Bill Bradley, Dave Debusschere, Walt Frazier, Willis Reed) 20. 1961 Boston Celtics (57-22, 8-2, HOFers: Bob Cousy, Tom Heinsohn, KC Jones, Sam Jones, Frank Ramsey, Bill Russell, Satch Sanders, Bill Sharman)
Here’s my take on the 100 greatest players in NBA/ABA history as of 2020
Michael Jordan “Air Jordan” – 6x Champion, 5x MVP – 30.1 PPG/6.2 RPG/5.3 APG
Wilt Chamberlain “The Big Dipper” – 4x MVP, 11x Rebounding leader – 30.1 PPG/22.9 RPG/4.4 APG
I love to crunch statistics and data – and here I’ve compiled the most dominant single seasons of most NBA superstars, calculated by taking the total of the average number of points per game, rebounds per game and assists per game, since 1977. The reason I chose 1977 is because it was the first year after the league consolidated from the NBA-ABA split. And thus the level of competition became higher. Also modern rules started to take effect from that time. So unfortunately, I don’t have players like Wilt Chamberlain, Bill Russell, John Havlicek, Jerry West, Walt Frazier, Oscar Robertson, etc ranked since they played before 1977, and the numbers were exaggerated back then especially for rebounds. And yes, I realize this penalizes players like John Stockton and Tim Duncan who didn’t have a dominant season and were very consistent, but this list is for players who had very high ceilings, but it puts into perspective how many superstars had great single seasons before they got injured (Grant Hill, Bernard King, Tracy McGrady, Chris Webber, Pete Maravich are all prime examples).
But here is the list of most dominant single seasons for NBA superstars since 1977 (columns are in order, name, dominant year, PPG, RPG, APG, position played):
Couple things to note here:
-Shaq was incredibly dominant in 2000, beating even 1987 Jordan. I mean, 29.7 PPG and 13.6 RPG is just incredible. What a beast.
-Chris Webber’s 2001 season and Tracy McGrady’s 2003 season are monstrous: these guys deserve to go into the hall of fame for those seasons alone.
-Some players most people have not heard of: Bob McAdoo, Adrian Dantley, Bernard King, Artis Gilmore, Bob Lanier, Alex English.. there were alot of players back in the late 70s/early 80s who were very dominant offensively, and very dominant defensively, but were lost in the books after Magic/Bird arrived on the scene.
-Bill Simmons considers a score over 42 eligible for ‘Level 4/Pantheon’ level greatness. Of course, thats an average over an entire career.
-Players with no standout season but consistent performance like John Stockton and Tim Duncan are not represented well on here. Doesn’t mean they aren’t fantastic players, just means they didn’t have as high peaks.
Here are the greatest single season performances of NBA players, by position:
1) Magic Johnson (1987) – 23.9/6.3/12.2
2) Isiah Thomas (1985) – 21.2/4.5/13.9
3) Gary Payton (2000) – 24.2/6.5/8.9
4) Chris Paul (2009) – 22.8/5.5/11.0
5) Kevin Johnson (1990) – 22.5/3.6/12.2
1) Michael Jordan (1987) – 37.1/5.2/4.6
2) Kobe Bryant (2006) – 35.4/5.3/4.5
3) Allen Iverson (2006) – 33.0/3.2/7.4
4) Dwayne Wade (2009) – 30.2/5.0/7.5
5) Pete Maravich (1977) – 31.1/5.1/5.4
1) Lebron James (2010) – 29.7/7.3/8.6
2) Larry Bird (1988) – 29.9/9.3/6.1
3) Tracy McGrady (2003) – 32.1/6.5/5.5
4) Bernard King (1985) – 32.9/5.8/3.7
5) Adrian Dantley (1981) – 30.7/6.4/4.0
1) Karl Malone (1990) – 31.0/11.1/2.8
2) Charles Barkley (1988) – 28.3/11.9/3.2
3) Kevin Garnett (2004) – 24.2/13.9/5.0
4) Bob McAdoo (1978) – 26.5/12.8/3.8
5) Chris Webber (2001) – 27.1/11.1/4.2
…And just for fun, here’s the pre-1977 statistics too:
Will you take a look at that? How ridiculous was 1962 that five of the greatest pre-1977 players (Russell, Chamberlain, Baylor, Robertson, Bellamy) all peaked in that year??? And just take a look at Wilt/Elgin’s stats… its just ridiculous.