Tag Archives: Michael Jordan

Stats the Fact, Jack-July 13, 2020

Stats the Fact, Jack-July 13, 2020

(A weekly look at three sports stats you may not know)

  1. In the history of Major League Baseball, there have been 46 players who had 1,000 or more career plate appearances and no home runs. Topping the list is Dave Eggler who played from 1871 to 1885. He had 2,598 plate appearances without a home run. Only one player who played this century was on the list of 46 players: Reggie Willits, an outfielder who played from 2006-11with the Angels. He had 1,014 career plate appearances without an HR. Of the current players, pitcher Johnny Cueto tops the list. He has 618 plate appearances and no home runs.
  2. Michael Jordan played for the Chicago Bulls from 1984-85 until 1997-98. He had 29,277 points, 5,836 rebounds and 5,012 assists with the Bulls during that timeframe, most on the club in each category. Since the 1998-99 season until today, do you know who has the most career points, rebounds and assists as a member of the Bulls? Luol Deng tops the list with 10,286 points; Joakim Noah is number one on the rebound list with 5,387; and Kirk Heinrich had 3,811 assists for the Bulls since 1998-99, most in that category.
  3. There are 10 NFL teams who have a .500 or better record in the history of the NFL playoffs. The teams: New England Patriots (37-21, .638), Green Bay Packers (35-23, .603), Baltimore Ravens (15-10, .600), San Francisco 49ers (33-22, .600), Pittsburgh (36-25, .590), Oakland Raiders (25-19, .568), Dallas Cowboys (35-28, .556), Denver Broncos (23-19, .548), Washington Redskins (23-19, .548) and Carolina Panthers (9-8, .529).

 

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Today’s Sportstat: May 17, 2020

Did playing against Michael Jordan motivate Dominique Wilkins to greatness?

 

Dominique Wilkins is a Hall of Famer, selected in 2006. He averaged 24.8 points per game and was a nine-time All-Star. Based on researching some numbers from his career, he may been one player who when he played against Michael Jordan and the Bulls, really elevated his game when facing basketball’s GOAT.

Jordan played for the Bulls from 1984-95 to 1992-92, and then rejoined the team at the end of the 1994-95 season and retired from the Bulls at the end of the 1997-98 season. During those Jordan-Bulls years, there were 24 times (by 16 different players) when an opposing player tallied 40 or more points in a game versus Jordan’s Bulls. Of those 24 times, Wilkins scored 40+ points against the Bulls five times, most of any rival player.

Here are the players who scored 40 or more points in a regular season game versus the Bulls during the years Jordan played with the team.

Dominique Wilkins, 5 times

Charles Barkley, Larry Bird, Bernard King and Reggie Miller, each twice

Adrian Dantley, Clyde Drexler, Patrick Ewing, Darrell Griffith, Allen Iverson, Jeff Malone, Karl Malone, Moses Malone, Glenn Robinson, Rony Seikaly, Kelly Tripucka, one time each

Wilkins tops the list with the most points scored by a player in a game versus the Bulls with Jordan on the roster. Wilkins scored 57 points in a December 10, 1986 game. Adrian Dantley is second on that list with a 45-point game against the Jordan-led Bulls.

From the 1984-85 season to the 1997-98 season, Wilkins tops the list for most total points scored against the Bulls with 1,492, a 28.7 per game average, also tops on the list. Patrick Ewing was second with 1,154 total points, followed by Isiah Thomas with 1,070 points and Charles Barkley with 1,065 points.

If we look at which opposing players had the most 30-point games versus the Bulls from 1984-85 to 1997-98, again Wilkins tops the list with 23 such games. Barkley and Larry Bird follow Wilkins with 13 games and Ewing had 10.

Only one other opposing player had a 50-point game in a contest with Jordan playing. Kobe Bryant had 55 in a March 28, 2003 game between the L.A. Lakers and Washington Wizards. Jordan was a member of the Wizards and tallied 23 points in that game. Orlando’s Tracy McGrady had 50 points in a March 8, 2002 game against the Wizards, but Jordan did not play in that game due to an injury.

The numbers seem pretty clear… Dominique Wilkins seemed to raise his game to another level when he was on the same court as Jordan. For his career, Wilkins averaged 27 points versus the Bulls in 66 total games, second-most versus any team (he averaged 27.2 points per game against the Kings in 27 contests).

 

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Today’s Sportstat: May 11, 2020

Inside some numbers from The Last Dance

With little live sports to watch on TV, the next best thing we have these days is “The Last Dance,” the 10-part ESPN documentary on Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls of the1990s and their attempt to win their third straight NBA title (for the second time) in Jordan’s and coach Phil Jackson’s last season with the team.

As a person who tends to watch sports (and listen) with a curiosity towards the numbers in the games, I was interested in a couple of segments in the series where some numbers caught my attention. Here are two of them:

  • In one episode that focused on Dennis Rodman, there was a trivia stat that was sandwiched during commercials. It mentioned that Rodman held the NBA record for most games played (seven) with 20 or more rebounds and zero points in that game. In fact, he is one of only five players ever to have those stats in a game; the others were Marcus Camby (twice), Reggie Evans, Happy Hairston and Clyde Lee (each once).

It’s one thing to not score a point in a game and have 20+ rebounds, but what about playing in a game where you never put up a shot?

Rodman and Wilt Chamberlain are tied for the NBA record for most rebounds in a regular season game, 18, without taking a shot in that game. There have been 47 times that a player has had 10 or more rebounds in a game and did not take a shot in that contest. Rodman leads this group; he did it nine times in his career. Reggie Evans is second on the list; he did it in five regular season games. Four other players did it two or more times in their careers: Chamberlain, Caldwell Jones, Charles Jones and Alton Lister.

In today’s NBA game where shooting and scoring takes precedence, it’s hard to imagine a player being in a game where he doesn’t fire up at least a couple of shots when he is on the court. Well, Rodman played seven games in his career where he played 30 or more minutes in the game and did not attempt a field goal. That tops the league. Charles Jones did it in five games in his career; Ben Wallace did it four games in his career, and Jason Collins is fourth on the list with three such games.

  • In one of the middle episodes, (#5 or #6), a good portion of the episode focused on The Dream Team. Jordan and Dream Team teammate Magic Johnson were shown bantering back and forth about fouls that were (or were not) called in a legendary scrimmage game played by the team. Jordan opined that Magic was always getting the calls in the NBA and had probably never fouled out of a game.

How correct was Jordan?

His comment sent me to the computer to do the research. Of the 12 players on the team, all are in the Basketball Hall of Fame except Christian Laettner. So here’s the question for you: Of the 11 members of the Dream Team who are in the Hall of Fame, which player fouled out of the fewest regular season NBA games in their career?

To refresh your memory, here are the 11 Dream Team members who are in the Hall: Charles Barkley, Larry Bird, Clyde Drexler, Patrick Ewing, Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan, Karl Malone, Chris Mullen, Scottie Pippen, David Robinson, John Stockton.

Well, Michael may have had a point… Magic Johnson fouled out of only five NBA regular season games in his career, the fewest among the 11 Dream Team members in the Hall of Fame.

Here is the list:

Career NBA regular season games fouled out
5-Magic Johnson
10-Chris Mullin
11-Larry Bird
11-Michael Jordan
28-Karl Malone
29-David Robinson
33-Clyde Drexler
35-John Stockton
37-Scottie Pippen
44-Charles Barkley
49-Patrick Ewing

 

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Today’s Sportstat: January 14, 2019

Luka Doncic: Have we seen him before?

Back in 1986, there was a very popular song by Suzanne Vega titled “Luka.” The first few lines of the song went like this: “My name is Luka. I live on the second floor. I live upstairs from you. Yes I think you’ve seen me before.”

I mention this because one of the compelling stories from this NBA season has been the play of Dallas Mavericks rookie “wunderkid,” Luka Doncic. The 19-year-old (he won’t turn 20 until February 28) from Slovania, was the third overall pick in the 2018 NBA Draft. Through the first half of this season, Doncic has been putting up some really impressive numbers for a rookie and seems to be the front-runner for this year’s Rookie of the Year Award. With his impressive skill set and overall game, in some circles, it might be said (unlike the song, “Luka,”) that we have not seen someone like him before.

Doncic leads the Mavs (through games of January 13) in points per game (20.2), and is second on the team in minutes played, rebounds per game (6.7) and assists per game (5.0). What makes these numbers all the more impressive is that if Doncic should finish the season with 20 points per game and five rebounds and five assists per game, he would join a very short list of rookies that have achieved these numbers.

Here’s a look at the four rookies in NBA history who averaged 20 points per game and had five rebounds and five assist per game in their rookie campaigns in the league:

Oscar Robertson, 1961, Cincinnati (30.5 points per game, 10.1 rebounds per game, 9.7 assists per game)

Michael Jordan, 1985, Chicago (28.2 points per game, 6.5 rebounds per game, 5.9 assists per game)

LeBron James, 2004, Cleveland (20.9 points per game, 5.5 rebounds per game, 5.9 assists per game)

Tyreke Evans, 2010, Sacramento (20.1 points per game, 5.3 rebounds per game, 5.8 assists per game)

Robertson and Jordan are already in the Hall of Fame and James will certainly join them when he hangs up his sneakers. Evans? His name on the list might have surprised more than a few NBA fans.

In addition, Doncic is on pace to total more than 1,600 points in his rookie season. That has happened 39 times in league history. Since 2000, we have seen the following rookies top the 1,600-point mark in their first season: Elton Brand (Chicago-2010), LeBron James (Cleveland-2004), Carmelo Anthony (Denver-2004), Kevin Durant (Seattle-2008), Blake Griffin (L.A. Clippers-2011) and Donovan Mitchell (Utah-2018). Of the 39 rookies who had 1,600 or more points in their rookie campaigns, 21 are currently in the Hall of Fame, with others like James, Anthony, Griffin, Durant and Tim Duncan likely joining that group in the future.

Wilt Chamberlain tops the list of most points scored in a rookie season with 2,707. He is followed by Walt Bellamy (2,495). The Dallas Mavs team record for most points by a rookie is 1,732 held by Jay Vincent in 1982.

It’s still early in Luka Doncic’s career, but he appears headed to that upper echelon of NBA players

 

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Today’s Sports Stat: June 2, 2018

LeBron James put on another historic performance in Game One of the NBA Finals, but not all the news was positive.

First, James became the sixth player in NBA history to score 50 or more points in a playoff game yet his team lost that game. The others: Michael Jordan (it happened to him twice), Ray Allen, Kobe Bryant, Billy Cunningham and Russell Westbrook.

LeBron’s 51 points now ties him for second (with Allen and Westbrook) on the list for most points scored in a playoff game by a player whose team lost. Jordan tops that list with a 63-point performance in a 1986 playoff game against Boston that the Celtics won.

James became the first player in NBA Finals history to score 50 or more points in a Finals series game that his team lost. Teams that had a player score 50 or more points in a Finals game had gone 3-0 before James’ 2018 Finals Game One; teams are now 27-19 in playoff games when they have a player who scored 40 or more points.

If we combine both regular season and playoff contests, James became the ninth player in NBA history to have scored 50 or more points in three or more games that his team lost. As you might expect, Jordan tops this list with 10 such games.

Here are the players who have the most games with 50 or more points (regular season and playoff) where their team was defeated in that contest.

10: Michael Jordan

8: Kobe Bryant

7: Wilt Chamberlain

5: Allen Iverson

4: Bernard King

3: LeBron James, Bob McAdoo, Russell Westbrook, Dominique Wilkins

 

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