May 7, 2024 - Sports

The NBA players closest to LeBron in playoff points have all been eliminated

A bar chart with orange bars showing the top 10 leaders in NBA playoff points scored among active players. LeBron James is first with 8,162 points, followed by Kevin Durant with 4,985 points.
Data: BasketballReference.com; Chart: Axios Visuals

Of the top 10 active leaders in NBA playoff scoring, not one is still alive in the NBA playoffs this year.

Why it matters: LeBron James is the leader in that category — he has the most NBA playoff points in the league's history — and the players closest to him are unable to gain additional ground this year.

The big picture: LeBron has one of the most statistically dominant professional sports careers of all time. Last year, he became the NBA's career leader in regular season points, surpassing Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

Between the lines: LeBron's total playoff points (8,162), amassed over 287 games in 54 series — including 10 finals appearances — illustrates the longevity of his reign.

By the numbers: Thirty-five-year-old Kevin Durant is No. 2 in active playoff points, with 4,985. Thirty-six-year-old Stephen Curry is No. 3, with 3,966.

Stunning stat: LeBron has more than double the total playoff points of Curry, a player with the same number of NBA championships as LeBron (4), and who is considered by many to be the second-best player of his generation.

  • The distance between LeBron and Curry, in other words, is greater than the distance between Curry and any NBA player who has never reached the postseason.

Zoom in: The rest of the top 10 are veteran players on the Golden State Warriors (Klay Thompson, Chris Paul), the Los Angeles Clippers (James Harden, Kawhi Leonard, Russell Westbrook, Paul George) and the Miami Heat (Jimmy Butler).

What's next: Of the players still in the NBA playoffs, Boston's Jason Tatum and Jaylen Brown, Denver's Nikola Jokic, Dallas' Kyrie Irving and Luka Doncic and Cleveland's Donovan Mitchell could ascend the leaderboard.

Yes, but: No one's catching LeBron anytime soon, if ever.

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