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How many 60 point games have there been in the NBA?

When Dame Lillard scored 71 points in an NBA game vs the Bulls on 26th February 2023 it was the 84th time a single player had scored 60 or more points in an NBA game. This was Lillard’s 5th time passing 59. He is bettered only by Kobe Bryant (6) and now tied with Michael Jordan (5). Oh, and Wilt Chamberlain who leads the NBA with 32 (THIRTY TWO) 60 point NBA games.

Yes. That is correct. Kobe, MJ, Lillard, Harden and Elgin Baylor form the complete list of players with more than one 60 point NBA game. Combined their total is ‘just’ 23. Wilt Chamberlain racked up 32 60 point games in his ridiculous career. Outside of these elite 6 players to have graced the court with multiple 60 point games, there are 28 others who (so far) have only managed it once. There are 34 players in total to have put up 60 point NBA games.

Full list of NBA players who have 60 point NBA Games in their career

Player60 Point GamesFirst 60 pts
Wilt Chamberlain323/9/1961
Kobe Bryant612/20/2005
Michael Jordan54/20/1986
Damian Lillard511/8/2019
Elgin Baylor411/8/1959
James Harden41/30/2018
David Thompson14/9/1978
David Robinson14/24/1994
Donovan Mitchell11/2/2023
Devin Booker13/24/2017
Pete Maravich12/25/1977
Rick Barry13/26/1974
Joe Fulks12/10/1949
Jerry West11/17/1962
George Gervin14/9/1978
Tracy McGrady13/10/2004
Carmelo Anthony11/24/2014
Stephen Curry11/3/2021
George Mikan11/20/1952
Karl Malone11/27/1990
Shaquille O’Neal13/6/2000
LeBron James13/3/2014
Bernard King112/25/1984
Larry Bird13/12/1985
Tom Chambers13/24/1990
Allen Iverson12/12/2005
Gilbert Arenas112/17/2006
Klay Thompson112/5/2016
Kemba Walker111/17/2018
Bradley Beal11/6/2021
Jayson Tatum14/30/2021
Karl-Anthony Towns13/14/2022
Kyrie Irving13/15/2022
Luka Dončić112/27/2022

List accurate as of January 27th 2023

Who had the first 60 point NBA Game?

On February 10th 1949 Joe Fulks put up 63 points for the Philadelphia Warriors (more on them later) against the Indianapolis Jets. In doing so he set a then NBA record for most points in a half with 33. He shot “just” 47% from the field on a whopping 56 attempts.

Known as “Jumping” Joe, Fulks is credited with bringing the jumpshot to the game of basketball. He was an athletic 6ft5 forward who used his height and athleticism to jump up in the air before shooting, changing the game of basketball forever. His record would last 10 years before Elgin Baylor put up 64 points in 1959. In the interim Fulks was joined by George Mikan who grabbed 61 points in 1952.

60 point NBA games by decade

With the explosion of scoring in the current decade you’d be forgiven for assuming that we are on course to see the most 60 point NBA games recorded in a single decade. Well, you are both right and wrong, you see, there’s this one guy from the 1960’s – Wilt Chamberlain.

List of 60 Point NBA Games by Decade

  • 2020’s – 11*
  • 2010’s – 11
  • 2000’s – 9
  • 1990’s – 5
  • 1980’s – 5
  • 1970’s – 4
  • 1960’s – 36
  • 1950’s – 2
  • 1940’s – 1

* Currently only covering 3 years!

While the 2020’s scoring explosion does look set to propel the decade close to the 1960’s record of THIRTY SIX 60 point NBA games, it is far from a guarantee. In the 1960’s three players recorded 60 point games, Wilt (32), Elgin Baylor (3) and Jerry West (1). So far in the 2020’s we have seen 60 point NBA games from 8 different players.

  • Damian Lillard
  • Stephen Curry
  • Bradley Beal
  • Jayson Tatum
  • Karl-Anthony Towns
  • Kyrie Irving
  • Luka Dončić
  • Donovan Mitchell

At a time where the NBA has more talent than ever before, the Superstars are not only better skilled across a wider breadth of the playing population and basketball functions, but the teams they play in are optimized for them to excel. The “Pace & Space” style of basketball that we see currently in the NBA is beautiful to watch, with its quick offenses and deep, accurate shooting. It also allows Superstars to dominate games like never before. Dame Lillard may not be as big or ruthless as Michael Jordan was in his prime, but his team are set up perfectly to allow him to maximize what he’s good at – getting BUCKETS.

How many 60 point NBA games did Wilt Chamberlain have?

Wilt Chamberlain had 32 60 point NBA games in his career. That’s 38% of all NBA 60 point games.

If it wasn’t for Wilt, the 6 point NBA game really would be the rarest of rare things. There would only have been 51 in the Leagues 75 year history. The most any player would have would be 6, set by elite bucket getter Kobe Bryant and behind him with just 5 would be the G.O.A.T, Michael Jordan. Like a fine wine, reserved only for those who possess a true mamba mentality. Then there’s Wilt Chamberlain with 32, 60 point outbursts on his own. If any further context was needed, Michael Jordan only has 31, FIFTY point NBA games. Wilt had more 60’s than Jordan had 50’s.

Wilt was a different kind of dominant. At a time when size and athleticism were a premium in the NBA, but much harder to come by in a league drawing from a much shallower talent pool. Standing at 7ft1 and weighing 275 lbs, Wilt was an absolute force of nature. He moved with the grace and athleticism of a modern NBA star, at a time when the majority of players who had anywhere near the size to slow him down were ploddy and ground bound.

Whenever an NBA player hits a statistical mark that pulls up Wilt’s name as a comparison, you know it’s a massive achievement for that individual player. The thing is, when it comes to scoring and rebounding Wilt is up there in almost every category. Wilt would surely be regarded much more highly if he had won more than his 2 NBA Titles. The simple reason for this is Bill Russell, at a time when there was almost no one in the league that could even slow Wilt Chamberlain down, there was one man, who was almost perfectly designed in every way to stop him when it mattered.

Russell was Chamberlain’s Nemesis, and the scoring machine’s legacy is surely all the worse for it.

What team has the most single player 60 point NBA Games?

This list is obviously dominated by the Wilt Chamberlain games

List of Teams by single player 60 point NBA Games

Team60 Point Games
Philadelphia Warriors17
Los Angeles Lakers13
San Francisco Warriors11
Chicago Bulls5
Portland Trail Blazers5
Philadelphia 76ers4
Houston Rockets4
Golden State Warriors3
Minneapolis Lakers2
San Antonio Spurs2
New York Knicks2
Boston Celtics2
Phoenix Suns2
Washington Wizards2
New Orleans Jazz1
Denver Nuggets1
Utah Jazz1
Orlando Magic1
Miami Heat1
Charlotte Hornets1
Minnesota Timberwolves1
Brooklyn Nets1
Dallas Mavericks1
Cleveland Cavaliers1

Chamberlain had 16 for the Philadelphia Warriors, 11 for the San Francisco Warriors, 3 for the Philadelphia 76ers and 2 for the LA Lakers.

Excluding Wilt’s games the Lakers have by far the most impressive 60 point game resume. Totalling 11 without Wilts games.

  • Kobe Bryant 6
  • Elgin Baylor 3
  • Jerry West 1
  • Shaquille O’Neal 1

The brightest stars have always managed to shine brightest in LA.

What NBA team has conceded the most single player 60 point games?

Unsurprisingly the Lakers and the Knicks have been on the end of the most 60 point games.

Opponent60 point Games
New York Knicks11
Los Angeles Lakers8
Boston Celtics5
St. Louis Hawks5
Cincinnati Royals4
Orlando Magic4
Chicago Packers3
Syracuse Nationals3
Philadelphia 76ers3
Portland Trail Blazers3
Atlanta Hawks3
San Antonio Spurs3
Chicago Bulls2
Detroit Pistons2
Los Angeles Clippers2
Dallas Mavericks2
Charlotte Bobcats2
Utah Jazz2
Indianapolis Jets1
Rochester Royals1
Philadelphia Warriors1
San Francisco Warriors1
Phoenix Suns1
New Orleans Jazz1
New Jersey Nets1
Milwaukee Bucks1
Seattle SuperSonics1
Cleveland Cavaliers1
Washington Wizards1
Toronto Raptors1
Memphis Grizzlies1
Indiana Pacers1
Brooklyn Nets1
Golden State Warriors1

The Knicks top the list and have had 7 different players put up 60 against them.

The Lakers in second place with 8 are all Wilt, with the exception of when the Wizards brought Gilbert Arenas to play in 2006.

Many top players have said that playing against the Knicks at MSG is a defining moment for their career, inspiring them to reach new heights and put up numbers they didn’t know they could. Poor Knicks.

Who has scored 70 points in an NBA Game?

The 60 point game is a special thing. Every player on that list had/has a unique capacity to score consistently and efficiently. They have been done in different ways, Dunks, Midrange Pull Ups, Free Throws, three pointers. Style isn’t the common denominator here, mental toughness and physical dominance are what unite all the players on the 60 point list.

But how many times has a player gone past that mark and hit 70+ points in an NBA game?

List of highest scoring single player games in NBA history

1100Wilt Chamberlain3/2/1962Philadelphia WarriorsNew York Knicks
281Kobe Bryant1/22/2006Los Angeles LakersToronto Raptors
378Wilt Chamberlain12/8/1961Philadelphia WarriorsLos Angeles Lakers
473Wilt Chamberlain1/13/1962Philadelphia WarriorsChicago Packers
473Wilt Chamberlain11/16/1962San Francisco WarriorsNew York Knicks
473David Thompson4/9/1978Denver NuggetsDetroit Pistons
772Wilt Chamberlain11/3/1962San Francisco WarriorsLos Angeles Lakers
871Elgin Baylor11/15/1960Los Angeles LakersNew York Knicks
871David Robinson4/24/1994San Antonio SpursLos Angeles Clippers
871Donovan Mitchell1/2/2023Cleveland CavaliersChicago Bulls
871Damian Lillard26/02/2023Portland Trail BlazersHouston Rockets
1170Wilt Chamberlain3/10/1963San Francisco WarriorsSyracuse Nationals
1170Devin Booker3/24/2017Phoenix SunsBoston Celtics

There have been 13 70 point games in NBA history. Scored by 8 players. Only 1 – Devon Booker 2017 came in a loss. Over half of them (6) scored by Wilt Chamberlain. The 70+ point game is too rare to be a good indicator of anything other than a great scorer having a brilliant night. The 60 point game is a much better indicator of great scoring prowess.

What are the most 3 pointers scored in a 60 point game?

43 of the 83 60 point NBA games came before the creation of the 3 point line. A further 7 didn’t feature a made 3 pointer. (in 6 of these games the player didn’t take a 3 pointer, in 1 Jordan vs Hawks in 1987 he went 0-3 from three point range). Meaning that 50 of the NBA’s 60 point games didn’t feature a made 3 pointer.

Unsurprisingly the most 3 pointers made in an NBA game featured the Golden State Warriors. However, you’ll be surprised to hear it wasn’t Steph, or Klay, or even Durrant. Damien Lillard put up 61 points, making 11 three pointers from 20 attempts on the way.

Steph Curry has 1 60 point game so far, where he went 8/16 from Three Point range.

How many 60 point games does Lebron have?

Lebron James has always considered himself to be more of a playmaker than a scorer. As he closes in on Kareem’s all time NBA Regular Season scoring record it’s easy to forget that Lebron really has been mostly a playmaker his whole life as opposed to a ruthless scorer.

Despite his monster overall scoring output Lebron James has only ever recorded 1 sixty point NBA Game. Grabbing 61 points against the Charlotte Bobcats in 2014. The then Miami Heat forward shot 22/33 overall from the field including a dynamite 8/10 from three point range.

As almost a reflection of their combined greatness Kareem didn’t even have 1 60 point game. Lebron and Kareem share a trait as players that always placed team success above their own individual glory. Could they have Kobe and Jordan numbers of 60 point games if they had wanted to? Absolutely.