LeBron James is currently second in the NBA in scoring average, and the NBA’s top-5 in that category currently reads like this:
Carmelo Anthony: 30.0
LeBron James: 29.6
Kevin Durant: 29.1
Kobe Bryant: 28.8
Dwyane Wade: 27.1
You probably knew that. You might have also known that nobody on this list averages more assists per game than LeBron, and only Durant’s 7.2 rebounds per game are more than the 7.l James averages. But that’s a topic for another day.
If you are just talking scoring, there is no NBA point scoring machine as dependable as the Akron Hammer ‘Bron ‘Bron’s been this season, especially when considering points per game, combined with both field goal percentage and the amount of times a players gets his team at least 20 points in a game.
Amongst these top-5 scoring leaders, there isn’t anybody on the list that boasts a better overall field goal percentage than the 51.1% clip LeBron has shot it at thus far this season. In fact nobody else is as high as forty-nine.
Durant’s 48.6% is second on that list, followed by Anthony at 47.6%. Kobe’s 46.9% field goals made mark would slot him fourth, and Wade’s year to date 45.5% from the field would round out the top-5.
But beyond scoring average and field goal percentage, the other measure of dependability and productivity is at least how many points can you count on a player for on any given night. Specifically, how often does a guy give you at least 20 points or more.
In LeBron’s case, he hasn’t reached the 20-point mark during a game this season 4 times. He has played in all 42 games, and scored at least 20 points or more in 38 of them.
How does that compare?
Kobe has scored less than 20 points in 8 games this season. Bryant has played in 40 games so far, and scored at least 20 points or more in 32 of them – and in those 32 games he has averaged well over 30 minutes per so don’t try to say that’s why.
Wade has played in 39 games this season and not scored 20 points 5 times, which is the same amount of times Durant didn’t manage to crack 20 through 40 games for OKC this season. And while Carmelo’sFG% is about 4 points worse than LeBron’s current average, he does have the least amount of games of not netting 20 points on this list (3 times) however he has also played in the least amount of games overall so far (35).
Notes: For whatever its worth, Melo did not make it to 20 points last season 22 times, Durant didn’t get there 16 times, Kobe didn’t get there 15 times, LeBron didn’t get there 9 times, and Wade didn’t get there 8 times.
Reference: ESPN Players Stats