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NBA Single-Game Scoring Reaches New Heights in 2022-23 Season

NBA single-game scoring reaches new heights in 2022-23 season originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

It’s safe to say we may never see an NBA player surpass Wilt Chamberlain’s legendary 100-point scoring performance. Chamberlain is still sitting pretty at the top with the single-game scoring record after leading the Golden State Warriors to victory over the New York Knicks on March 2, 1962.

The only player that has even come close to Chamberlain’s record in the last six decades of NBA history is Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant, who scored 81 points on Jan. 22, 2006, in the 122-104 win against the Toronto Raptors. 

While the 100-point plateau has been hard to reach, there has been no lack of high-scoring single-game performances in recent basketball history as players have begun to lean on the three-point shot more and more. 

This season is no different – as of Jan. 4, there have been 14 games where players have scored 50 points or more in the 2022-23 NBA season.

Here’s a look at the NBA stars who have scored 50 or more points in a single game this season, in descending order from the highest total:

1. Donovan Mitchell (71) – Jan. 2, 2023 

Donovan Mitchell is the most recent player to score a 70-point-plus game this season. The Cleveland Cavaliers All-Star guard scored 71 points — the highest single-game total since Bryant’s 81 — when the Cavs defeated the Chicago Bulls 145-134 in overtime. Mitchell put the fans – and the league – on such high notice that Mitchell found himself on the receiving end of a random performance-enhancing drug test.

2. Luka Doncic (60) – Dec. 27, 2022

Luka Doncic is no stranger to high-scoring games. And, after the European star stated that it’s easier to score in the NBA than the EuroLeague, it’s no shock that he continues to rake in points. He did just that when he scored 60 points in the Dallas Mavericks’ 126-121 victory against the Knicks.

3. Joel Embiid (59) – Nov. 13, 2022

The Philadelphia 76ers star center scored a career-high 59 points as he led the Sixers to a 105-98 win over the Utah Jazz. It also marked the fifth-highest-scoring game in the 76ers’ history, trailing performances by Chamberlain (68, 65, 62) and Allen Iverson (60).

4. Devin Booker (58) – Dec. 17, 2022

Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker dropped 58 points in the team’s comeback win over the New Orleans Pelicans. It was Booker’s third-most scored points in his career and the fifth 50-point game of his career. He also became the youngest player to record five 50-point games since Kobe Bryant. 

T5. Giannis Antetokounmpo (55) – Jan. 3, 2023

Milwaukee Bucks powerhouse star Giannis Antetokounmpo scored a career-high 55 points as he led the Bucks to a thrilling 123-113 win over the Washington Wizards. This marked the third-straight game in which the two-time league MVP collected at least 40 points, 10 rebounds, and 5 assists. 

T5. Anthony Davis (55) – Dec. 4, 2022

Lakers big man Anthony Davis poured in 55 points in the Lakers’ 130-119 win over the Wizards. The 55-point performance marked the fifth 50-point performance of Davis’ career and his first since 2019.

7. Klay Thompson (54) – Jan. 2, 2023

Warriors star player Klay Thompson dropped 54 points in the Warriors’ thrilling, and high scoring, 143-141 double-overtime win over the Atlanta Hawks. Thompson went 21 of 39 from the field and 10 of 21 from the 3-point range. 

8. Joel Embiid (53) – Dec. 11, 2022

Joel Embiid scored 53 points as he led the Sixers to a dominating 131-113 win over the Charlotte Hornets. Embiid shot 20 of 32 from the field and added 12 rebounds in only 34 minutes on the night. This was just the 22nd time in the last decade that a player scored 50 points playing fewer than 35 minutes. 

9. Pascal Siakam (52) Dec. 21, 2022

Toronto Raptors forward Pascal Siakam scored a career-high 52 points in the Raptors’ 113-106 win over the Knicks. Siakam became the fifth player in franchise history to score 50 or more points in a game during the win. 

T10. Luka Doncic (51) Dec. 31, 2022

Luka picked up 51 points in the Mavs’ 126-125 nail-biting win over the San Antonio Spurs. Doncic made 18 of 29 shots from the field and added nine assists and six rebounds in 37 minutes and 14 seconds of playtime. 

T10. Devin Booker (51) Nov. 30, 2022

Suns’ Devin Booker scored 51 points in the team’s 132-113 victory over the Bulls. Booker scored 25 points in the first half and then followed up with 26 points in the third quarter of the game. 

T10. Darius Garland (51) Nov. 13, 2022

Cleveland Cavaliers guard Darius Garland scored a career-high 51 points in the team’s 129-124 loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves. The performance was impressive as Garland dropped 27 points in the fourth quarter of the game.

T13. Luka Doncic (50) Dec. 23, 2022

Luka Doncic notched 50 points on 30 shots for the Mavs in the team’s 112-106 victory over the Houston Rockets. Doncic joined legendary player Dirk Nowitzki as the only two Mavs players to record multiple 50-point games.

T13. Stephen Curry (50) Nov. 16, 2022

Warriors’ All-Star guard Steph Curry is no stranger to dropping buckets and he did that in his 50-point performance against the Suns. But it wouldn’t be enough as the team fell to Phoenix 130-119.

Who scored 100 points in a single NBA game?

Wilt Chamberlain, as aforementioned, set the single-game scoring record with a whopping 100 points after leading the Warriors to victory over the Knicks on March 2, 1962. 

What is Michael Jordan’s record for points scored in a single game?

Chicago Bulls legend Michael Jordan scored his most points in a game against the Cavaliers on March 28, 1990, with 69 points.

Who scored 70 points in an NBA game this season?

Donovan Mitchell is the only player to score 70 points this season after dropping 71 against the Bulls on Jan. 2, 2023.

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