As the 2022-23 NBA tips-off this week, it’s interesting to note that there are 20 players who have averaged in their careers 20 or more points per game, seven or more rebounds per game, and three or more assists per game. Of these 20 players, eight are currently active in the league.
Here’s the alphabetical list of these 20 players to have career averages of 20+ pts, 7+ rebounds and 3+ assists per game (* indicates a member of the Hall of Fame):
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, 24.6/11.2/3.6*
Giannis Antetokounmpo, 21.8/9.4/4.6
Charles Barkley, 22.1/11.7/3.9*
Elgin Baylor, 27.4/13.5/4.3*
Larry Bird, 24.3/10.0/6.3*
Wilt Chamberlain, 30.1/22.9/4.4*
Billy Cunningham, 20.8/10.1/4.0*
Luka Doncic, 26.4/8.5/8.0
Kevin Durant, 27.2/7.1/4.3
Joel Embiid, 26.0/11.4/3.3
LeBron James, 27.1/7.5/7.4
Marques Johnson, 20.1/7.0/3.6
Bob Lanier, 20.1/10.1/3.1*
Karl Malone, 25.0/10.1/3.6*
Bob Pettit, 26.4/16.2/3.0*
Oscar Robertson, 25.7/7.5/9.5*
Karl-Anthony Towns, 23.2/11.3/3.1
Chris Webber, 20.7/9.8/4.2*
Russell Westbrook, 22.8/7.4/8.4
Zion Williamson, 25.7/7.0/3.2
A closer look at these 20 reveals a couple of interesting facts:
- Eleven of the 20 who are no longer playing are in the Hall of Fame. Eight are currently active in the NBA. The only player on this list who is not playing and not in the Hall of Fame is Marques Johnson.
- Milwaukee Bucks fans will see that five different players on this list have spent time with the team: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Marques Johnson, Bob Lanier, and Oscar Robertson.
- Giannis has averaged 21.8 points per game, 9.4 rebounds per game, and 4.6 assists per game. Only one player in NBA history has better numbers than Antetokounmpo in each of these three stat categories: Larry Bird. He averaged 24.3 points per game, 10.0 rebounds per game, and 6.3 assist per game.
A week from today, on October 20, the Milwaukee Bucks will open their 2022-23 NBA regular season with a trip to Philadelphia’s Wells Fargo Center in their season opener versus the 76ers.
According to research on the basketball-reference.com website, the Bucks enter this season with one of the most NBA-experienced teams in the league. Based on the rosters posted on this website, the Bucks have six players on the roster with 10 or more years of NBA experience on their resume.
The six: Brook Lopez (14 years), George Hill (14 years), Serge Ibaka (13 years), Wesley Matthews (13), Jrue Holiday (13 years) and Khris Middleton (10) years. And their best player, Giannis Antetokounmpo, is entering his 10th season.
The Bucks six players with 10 or more years of NBA experience are tied for the most in the league. The Los Angeles Clippers also have six players on their roster with 10-plus years of NBA experience: Nicolas Batum (14), Paul George (12), Reggie Jackson (11), Marcus Morris (11), John Wall (10) and Kawhi Leonard (10).
Will this experience lead to success for the Bucks this season? We’ll find out as the season tips-off next week.
Here’s a look at how many players with 10 or more years of experience are on each team’s roster:
6-Milwaukee, L.A. Clippers
4-Brooklyn, Chicago, L.A. Lakers
3-Boston, Cleveland, Denver, Detroit, Golden State, Houston, Miami, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Washington
2-New Orleans, N.Y. Knicks, Sacramento, Utah
1-Charlotte, Dallas, Indiana, Memphis, Minnesota, Orlando, Portland, Toronto
0-Atlanta, Oklahoma City, San Antonio
With the NBA looking to conclude their interrupted 2019-20 season with 22 of the 30 teams finishing the season in games only in Orlando, teams that depend on home court advantage will be without benefit of a home crowd as the season plays out. And one team that may not like this fact is the Milwaukee Bucks.
Based on home court records starting with the 2018-19 season and ending with the delay instituted earlier this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Bucks had a league-leading .847 winning percentage in home games over that period… 61 wins and 11 losses on their home court. Eleven NBA teams since the start of the 2018-19 season have won 2/3 or more of their home games.
With no crowds and no home court advantage, will this be a negative for some teams? We’ll have to see how this plays out since we don’t have any history of such a large sample of neutral court games in league history. But this we know for sure: None of the 22 teams finishing out this season will benefit from a home crowd. Will this make for a more level playing field (court) as the season winds down and eventually crowns a champion in 2020? Stay tuned.
Here is the winning percentage of each of the 30 NBA teams in home games since the beginning of the 2018-19 season through contests played in 2019-20.
Milwaukee, .847… Philadelphia, .833
Denver, .797… Toronto, .753… Houston, .726
Boston, .699… L.A. Clippers,.699… Utah, .694… Indiana, .685… Portland, .685… San Antonio, .676… Oklahoma City, .635… Miami, .630… L.A. Lakers, .625
Dallas, .573… Orlando, .569… Brooklyn, .562… Sacramento, .528… Memphis, .527… Washington, .521… Golden State, .507… Detroit, .500
Charlotte, .486… Minnesota, .452… New Orleans, .438… Atlanta, .413
Phoenix, .329… Cleveland, .312… Chicago, .307
New York, .270
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Who’s the best one-season player in Bucks history?
In college basketball circles, it’s called “one-and-done.” In professional sports, there doesn’t seem to be a catchy term, but the concept is still the same… a player spends one year with a team before he moves on to the next team.
In the 50-year history of the Milwaukee Bucks, they have had their share of players who have spent just one year with the team and then moved on to the next stop. But have there been any players who had exceptional years in their one-year stop in Milwaukee?
To answer that question, let’s first start with some numbers. Here is a look at the players who had the most points, rebounds and assists in only one season with the Bucks. For example, Richard Jefferson played only one year in Milwaukee and scored 1,607 points. That’s the most points by a player who had just a one-year career in Milwaukee.
Points-800 or more (only one season with Bucks)
1,607-Richard Jefferson, 2009
1,194-Ruben Patterson, 2007
1,023-Wayne Embry, 1969
979-Ken Norman, 1994
938-Swen Nater, 1977
843-Fred Hetzel, 1969
825-Lindsey Hunter, 2001
805-Corey Maggette, 2001
Rebounds-400 or more (only one season with Bucks)
865-Swen Nater, 1977
778-Jamaal Magloire, 2006
672-Wayne Embry, 1969
500-Ken Norman, 1994
473-Fred Hetzel, 1969
440-Ruben Patterson, 2007
436-Benoit Benjamin, 1996
435-Bob Boozer, 1971
410-John Block, 1972
Assists-200 or more (only one season with Bucks)
252-Phil Ford, 1983
243-Keyon Dooling, 2011
232-Ruben Patterson, 2007
225-Freddie Crawford, 1970
225-George Thompson, 1975
222-Lindsey Hunter, 2001
222-Ken Norman, 1994
206-Gary Payton, 2003
So, based on these numbers who would you choose as the best one-season player in Bucks history? To help you make a selection, here’s my choices for eight players who should be considered for this honor. There’s a short narrative about each of these players and their time in Milwaukee. I am listing them in alphabetical order. (Listed in parenthesis is the only year they played in Milwaukee.)
(PPG-Points per Game, RPG-Rebounds per Game, APG-Assists per Game)
Wayne Embry, 1968-69: This season was Embry’s last in the NBA as a player. He came to the Bucks in the 1968 expansion draft from the Cincinnati Royals. He averaged 13.1PPG and 8.6RPG. He averaged over 30 minutes per game in 78 contests for the Bucks. He was the last center for the Bucks before Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. A 1999 inductee into the Basketball Hall of Fame, Embry was the first African-American GM and team President.
Fred Hetzel, 1968-69: Another expansion draft player that played on the original Bucks team. The all-purpose forward averaged 15.9PPG that was third best on the team (it was the second-highest in his six-year NBA career) and grabbed 8.9 RPG that was third best on the team and the highest of his career. He was traded to the Cincinnati Royals after only 53 games with the Bucks that season.
Lindsey Hunter, 2000-01: A three-point specialist, Hunter teamed with Ray Allen that year with the Bucks to give them a potent 1-2 punch from beyond the three-point line. He averaged 10.1PPG that year and was a top reserve for the team. He came to the Bucks from the Detroit Pistons in a trade and was then traded by the Bucks to the L.A. Lakers after that season for Greg Foster. Hunter won an NBA title with the Lakers that season.
Richard Jefferson, 2008-09: He started all 82 games for the Bucks that season. Ended the year averaging 19.6PPG, 4.6RPG and 2.4APG. He was second to Michael Redd in scoring that season. He led the Bucks in three-pointers and three-point attempts that year and was third on the team in rebounds. He was traded to the Bucks from the New Jersey Nets and then almost a year to the date was traded by the Bucks to the San Antonio Spurs. Played 17 years in the NBA.
Jamaal Magloire, 2005-06: A rebounding machine, Magloire led the Bucks in rebounding that year with 9.5RPG (second highest of his career) and also tallied 9.2PPG. He was the Bucks starting center that season starting all 82 of the team’s games. He came to the Bucks in a trade with the Hornets and then was traded to Portland by the Bucks in the off-season for three players. He had a career-high 22 rebounds in a game with the Bucks.
Swen Nater, 1976-77: He was originally drafted by the Bucks in 1973, but decided instead to take his talents to the ABA. He played in the ABA until 1976 and then came to the Bucks in 1976. He led the team in rebounding that season with 12RPG and averaged 13 PPG. At the end of the season he was traded to the Buffalo Braves for a first round draft choice that later became Marques Johnson.
Ken Norman, 1993-94: His numbers that season were 11.9PPG, 6.1RPC and 2.7APG. He was second on the team that year in minutes played. The University of Illinois standout played six seasons with the Clippers and then signed with the Bucks as a free agent. He was traded to the Atlanta Hawks for Roy Hinson in the off-season after his year in Milwaukee. He started 75 of the 82 games that season for Milwaukee.
Ruben Patterson, 2006-07: He started 53 of 81 games for the Bucks that season. He had his best year as an NBA player with the Bucks averaging 14.7PPG, 5.4RPG and 2.9APG. His 31 minutes played per game that year was the high of his career as was his 55% field goal percentage. He left the Bucks after the season for the L.A. Clippers, but played only 20 games and was then waived. He never played again in the league.
So, who is your choice? Or is there someone not mentioned that should be considered? Let us know your opinion.
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The last 20 games of the NBA season: Which team is the best over the past three years?
The NBA’s best team (record-wise), the Milwaukee Bucks, was 53-9 on Friday, March 6 before they played the Los Angeles Lakers. They were starting their last 20-game stretch in this season.
A loss to the Lakers that night and another loss to the Phoenix Suns two days later meant the Bucks had started the final 20-game stretch with a 0-2 season.
Fortunately, the Bucks have already secured a playoff spot for this season. For other teams, however, the final 20-game stretch is where they will make a push for not only a spot in the playoffs, but a high seed to gain home court advantage.
Over the past previous three NBA seasons (2016-17, 2017-18 and 2018-19), there were three teams that won 70% or higher of their last 20 games in each of those three seasons… 60 games in total over three campaigns.
Topping the list were the Houston Rockets who went 44-16 (.733) in the last 20 games of the season in the last three years. Two fellow Western Conference teams followed the Rockets: Utah at 43-17 (.717) and Portland at 42-18 (.700).
Here’s a look at how many games each NBA team won in the past three seasons in the last 20 games of the campaign… 60 games total.
40: Golden State
38: San Antonio
36: Denver, L.A. Clippers, Miami, Milwaukee, Oklahoma City
28: New Orleans
27: Brooklyn, Charlotte, Cleveland, Detroit
21: Chicago, L.A. Lakers
15: New York
Only one team, the 1996-97 Utah Jazz, won 19 of their last 20 games of a season. Seven teams won 18 of their last 20, the most recent of those teams being the 2017-18 Philadelphia 76ers. Last season the Rockets won 16 of their last 20 games, the most of any team in the NBA. Portland and San Antonio were next with 15 wins in their last 20 games last season.
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