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5 most infamous instances of an NBA player scoring zero points in a game 

Joel Embiid is registering close to 30 points a night this season
Joel Embiid is registering close to 30 points a night this season
ANALYST
Modified 07 Apr 2021
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The current style of play in the NBA favors players to have big-scoring performances on a nightly basis.

However, this hasn't always been the case and there have been instances when players have failed to score a single point despite playing a significant number of minutes in a game.

While scoring isn't the only way to impact a game in the NBA, a player finishing with zero points despite playing over 20 minutes is a rare sight.

5 NBA players who have contributed 0 points despite making the starting lineup

NBA fans expect every player in the starting 5 to make have at least some contribution on offense. However, that doesn't always prove to be the case. Even as recent as the Dallas Mavericks' last game, both Nicolo Melli and Maxi Kleber scored 0 points despite playing 30+ minutes.

Below, we will list some of the more famous examples of NBA players having the worst shooting night of their careers.

#1 Tony Snell vs Utah Jazz - 24th February 2017

Tony Snell spent 3 seasons with the Milwaukee Bucks as a starter
Tony Snell spent 3 seasons with the Milwaukee Bucks as a starter

Although Tony Snell currently leads the NBA in three-point percentage this season, he is also the holder of one of the worst statlines in the league's history.

Snell played some of his best basketball when in Milwaukee for three seasons from 2016-2019. However, in his first year with the franchise in a game against the Utah Jazz, the shooting guard failed to register a single point, assist, rebound, steal or block in 28 minutes on the floor.

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Unfortunately for Snell, his box score has been forever etched in NBA fans' memories. Despite being a consistent starter for the Bucks and having a career-best season in 2016-17, the game against the Jazz has eclipsed his efforts that year.

#2 Joel Embiid vs Toronto Raptors - November 26th, 2019

Joel Embiid has been dominant this season for the 76ers
Joel Embiid has been dominant this season for the 76ers

Joel Embiid has always been an NBA player who has faced criticism in the past for not dominating enough games. But the center is crushing his critics this season and putting up MVP-caliber numbers.

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However, one blip in the Cameroonian's career was the night a depleted Toronto Raptors side held the big man to 0 points.

To make matters worse for Embiid, it was the first time the 76ers had played the Raptors since they knocked them out of the NBA playoffs with Kawhi Leonard's buzzer-beater.

Playing 32 minutes and not registering a single point seems staggering for a player who is averaging almost 30 points per game.

#3 Wilt Chamberlain vs Milwaukee Bucks - March 27th, 1973

Despite being one of the greatest players in NBA history and indeed one of its best scorers, even Wilt Chamberlain had some off nights toward the end of his illustrious career.

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Although he no longer scored 50 points a night, Chamberlain still averaged 14 points and an NBA-leading 18.9 rebounds in his final two seasons with the LA Lakers. But in a game against the Bucks in 1973, Chamberlain scored 0 points and attempted no free throws, the first time he had done so in his career.

Even when his offense wasn't flowing, Chamberlain still managed to grab 14 boards and dish out four assists on the night.

#4 P.J. Washington vs Phoenix Suns - March 28th, 2021

Charlotte Hornets forward PJ Washington
Charlotte Hornets forward PJ Washington

Just over a week ago, social media was in flux after Charlotte Hornets forward PJ Washington broke the record for most minutes in a game without scoring while having at least one free-throw attempt in league history.

Against the Phoenix Suns, the 22-year old played 44 minutes without scoring a single point. However, he did grab 12 rebounds and dished two assists to spare his blushes.

Washington will certainly never want a repeat of that night for the rest of his career.

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#5 Dennis Rodman vs Charlotte Hornets - December 1st, 1993

Chicago Bulls legend Dennis Rodman
Chicago Bulls legend Dennis Rodman

One of the NBA's best defensive players of all time, Dennis Rodman, was no stranger to a scoreless game.

During his NBA career, Rodman registered a whopping seven games with 0 points and 20+ rebounds, proving you don't have to score to have an immense impact on a game.

The highlight of those seven came when playing with the San Antonio Spurs against the Charlotte Hornets. Rodman grabbed a staggering 28 boards in 44 minutes and took only 5 field-goal attempts but scored zero points.

Published 07 Apr 2021, 03:46 IST
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