StaTuesday: Giannis makes the 50-point game special again
Fifty-point games aren’t necessarily a rare thing in the NBA these days.
When Giannis Antetokounmpo hit 50 in Milwaukee’s win over Utah on Monday night it was already the fifth time an NBA player had reached that mark this season. Last year, it happened 22 times during the regular season.
A 50-point game in Bucks history, though? That’s exclusive company. Antetokounmpo is only one of four players to reach that mark in a game and one of three to do it more than once. He had a 52-point outing last season in a loss to Philadelphia as well.
The last time, like Monday, when the Bucks won a game with a player having 50+ points came 10 years ago when Brandon Jennings had his 55-point game vs. Golden State.
BUCKS 50-POINT GAMES
But Antetokounmpo’s performance was more impressive than just a 50-point game.
He also had 14 rebounds and six assists in that game against the Jazz. According to basketball-reference.com, it’s just the 83rd time a player has had 50+ points, 10+ rebounds and 5+ assists in a game.
But Giannis also didn’t turn the ball over once. Since the 1983-84 season (the last year basketball-reference has full turnover statistics; the site also has partial stats available for turnovers from 1977-83), there’s only one other player to have a 50-10-5 game with no turnovers:
Michael Jordan, who did it on Nov. 3, 1989 (54-14-6).
But Monday against Utah wasn’t the only impressive performance Antetokounmpo had last week. On Thursday in a win over Portland he had 24 points, 19 rebounds and 15 assists. According to basketball-reference, it was just the 47th time in NBA history a player had 15+ points, 15+ rebounds and 15+ assists (with the caveat some data is missing). Those 47 occasions were done by just 15 players (Oscar Robertson did it 10 times himself with Cincinnati from 1960-62).
Of those 15 players, only two were forwards. The rest guards or centers (Denver’s Nikola Jokic actually did it against the Bucks last season; Wilt Chamberlain accomplished it eight times). The other forward besides Antetokounmpo?
Larry Bird, who did it twice (Nov. 13, 1982 and April 1, 1987).
Bird. Jordan. Antetokounmpo. Pretty good company to keep, if you ask us.