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10 NBA players with the most career points

Modified 22 Oct 2020, 17:12 IST

#8 Shaquille O'Neal - 28,596 points

Shaquille O
Shaquille O'Neal was the NBA Finals MVP on three occasions.

The unique power and impact of Shaquille O'Neal, possibly the most physically dominant player in NBA history, helped him tally an impressive 28,596 points during his illustrious 19-year NBA career. He accumulated that tally while playing for the Orlando Magic, LA Lakers, Miami Heat, Phoenix Suns, Cleveland Cavaliers and Boston Celtics.

O'Neill was selected 15 times in an NBA All-star game. The four-time NBA and two-time scoring champion won three Finals MVP awards and a regular-season MVP award during his legendary career. He was also selected as the MVP of NBA All-star games on three occasions and was included in the All-NBA teams 14 times.

#7 Wilt Chamberlain - 31,419 points

Wilt Chamberlain was a dominant force.
Wilt Chamberlain was a dominant force.

If Shaq's case for being the most physically dominant player in NBA history has a 'possibly' tag attached to it, it is because of Wilt Chamberlain.

The owner of almost every major NBA record during the regular season, Wilt Chamberlain is seventh in total points scored (31,419) by a player in the competition's all-time list. He scored as many as 100 of those points in one game, doing so on 2 March 1962.


His scoring outburst from his rookie season (1959-60) till 1965-66 was unbelievable. In this period, Chamberlain averaged 39.6 points per game on 51% from the field.

In the 1961-62 season, he averaged 50.4 points per game, which is a record for most points averaged during an NBA regular season. In fact, the four highest averages of points per game in an NBA regular season all belong to Chamberlain.

Chamberlain was the NBA's all-time leader in points scored from 1966 till 5 April 1984 till Kareem Abdul-Jabbar surpassed the former's tally. Chamberlain ranks second in terms of points scored per game during his career, with 30.1.

#6 Dirk Nowitzki - 31,560 points

Dirk Nowitzki
Dirk Nowitzki's playoffs run in 2011 was epic.

Dirk Nowitzki's offense was extraordinary in the NBA, and his leadership during the Dallas Mavericks' title run in 2011 was impressive as well. The German power forward ranks sixth for most points scored (31,560) in NBA history.


Nowitzki, who is a 14-time NBA All-star, was the MVP of the 2011 NBA Finals. He had his best scoring stretch from his fourth NBA season (2001-02) to his 13th in 2010-11. During this period, Nowitzki averaged 25 points per game on 48% from the field, 39% from three and 89% from the free-throw line.

Dirk Nowitzki's one-legged fadeaway jump shot is among the most unstoppable shots in NBA history.

#5 Michael Jordan - 32,292 points

Michael Jordan is arguably the greatest scorer ever in the NBA.
Michael Jordan is arguably the greatest scorer ever in the NBA.

Yes, 'His Airness' is 'just' fifth on this list, with 32,292 points scored during his glorious NBA career.

Michael Jordan is the NBA's all-time leader in terms of points scored per game, with 30.1, which is just ahead of Wilt Chamberlain's. In this list, only Chamberlain (1045) played less games than Jordan (1075).


Jordan is the all-time leader in terms of scoring titles, with 10, and is tied with Chamberlain with seven consecutive scoring titles. In fact, Jordan's ten scoring titles were won in the ten full years he played from 1986-87 till 1997-98 (he retired at the end of 1993 and played just 17 games in the 1994-95 regular season).

In addition to his six titles, six NBA Finals MVP awards, five regular-season MVP awards and Defensive Player of the Year award, Jordan was the NBA's ultimate scorer during his legendary career.

Published 22 Oct 2020, 17:12 IST
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