25 Great Performance in the First Round of NBA Playoff History

nba playoffs 560x315The start of the 2017 NBA Playoffs marks the ending of one of the most amazing seasons in NBA history. The 2016-17 NBA season gave us dramatic finishes, similar faces in new places, one of the tightest MVP races in history, and a ton of other surprises that left even the most somber NBA fan smiling.

The MVP race has to be the most intriguing part of the 2016-17 season because it featured a battle between James Harden, Kawhi Leonard, LeBron James, and Russell Westbrook that will continue to be talked about for years to come. When they announce the MVP in late June, whoever wins is going to be among the greatest MVPs ever, and deservedly so.

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Those performances lifted their teams into the first round of the playoffs, which have already begun and given us a few last-minute finishes like when the Indiana Pacers had a shot to win the game but forgot to pass it to Paul George, their best player and one of the league’s best overall talents. Then the Chicago Bulls upset the Boston Celtics in their first game before the match-up we all were waiting for, Harden against Westbrook, left us scratching our heads. The Houston Rockets not only handled the Oklahoma City Thunder, they beat them down, winning by 31 points and shutting down Russell Westbrook in the process.

After just a few games, there has already been 10 players score more than 30 points in a game, which also includes C.J. McCollum’s 41-point outburst against the Golden State Warriors during Game 1 of their series.

We came up with a scoring method to measure a player’s performance based on 14 different statistical categories (Field Goals missed, 3-Pointers Made, Free Throws missed, Offensive Rebounds, Defensive Rebounds, Assists, Steals, Blocks, Turnovers, and Points), weighing them evenly to produce the best overall point totals from each player. We also gave bonus points if the game was Away, a Win, and if the player had a Double-Double or a Triple-Double.

Statistics Abbrev. Key

FGM: Field Goals Made 3PM: 3-Point Shots Made
FTM: Free Throws Made FGA: Field Goals Attempted
3PA: 3-Point Shots Attempted FTA: Free Throws Attempted
FG%: Field Goal Percentage 3P%: 3-Point Percentage
FT%: Free Throw Percentage Orb: Offensive Rebounds
Drb: Defensive Rebounds Ast: Assists
Stl: Steals Blk: Blocks
Pts: Points TO: Turnovers
DD: Double-Doubles TD: Triple-Doubles

25. 2010: LeBron James, SF, CLE

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  • Date: April 4th, 2010
  • Opponent (Result): vs. Chicago Bulls (112-102, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 16-23, 69.6%
    • 3PM-3PA (3P%): 2-4, 50.0%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 6-6, 100%
    • 40 PTS, 8 REB (1 ORB), 8 AST, 1 STL, 2 BLK, 2 TO

24. 2002: Paul Pierce, SF, BOS

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  • Date: May 3rd, 2002
  • Opponent (Result): vs. Philadelphia 76ers (120-87, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 16-25, 64%
    • 3PM-3PA (3P%): 8-10, 80%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 6-7, 85.7%
    • 46 PTS, 4 REB (1 ORB), 6 AST, 1 STL, 1 BLK, 0 TO

23. 2002: Baron Davis, PG, CHA

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  • Date: April 27th, 2002
  • Opponent (Result): @ Orlando Magic (110-100, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 12-29, 41.4%
    • 3PM-3PA (3P%): 3-9, 33.3%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 6-8, 75%
    • 33 PTS, 14 REB (4 ORB), 10 AST, 2 STL, 0 TO
    • Triple-Double

22. 2008: Tony Parker, PG, SAS

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  • Date: April 25th, 2008
  • Opponent (Result): @ Phoenix Suns (115-99, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 17-26, 65.4%
    • 3PM-3PA (3P%): 1-3, 33.3%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 6-7, 85.7%
    • 41 PTS, 5 REB, 12 AST, 2 STL, 3 TO
    • Double-Double

21. 2008: Chris Paul, PG, NOH

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  • Date: April 29th, 2008
  • Opponent (Result): vs. Dallas Mavericks (99-94, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 10-19, 52.6%
    • 3PM-3PA (3P%): 2-3, 66.7%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 2-4, 50%
    • 24 PTS, 11 REB (2 ORB), 15 AST, 2 STL, 0 TO
    • Triple-Double

20. 1985: Johnny Moore, PG, SAS

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  • Date: April 26th, 1985
  • Opponent (Result): vs. Denver Nuggets (116-111, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 7-10, 70%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 3-6, 50%
    • 17 PTS, 10 REB (1 ORB), 16 AST, 4 STL, 2 BLK, 3 TO
    • Triple-Double

19. 1992: Clyde Drexler, SG, POR

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  • Date: April 29th, 1992
  • Opponent (Result): @ Los Angeles Lakers (119-121, Loss)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 14-23, 60.9%
    • 3PM-3PA (3P%): 2-5, 40%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 12-13, 92.3%
    • 42 PTS, 9 REB (3 ORB), 12 AST, 2 STL, 6 TO
    • Double-Double

18. 2003: Allen Iverson, SG, PHI

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  • Date: April 20th, 2003
  • Opponent (Result): vs. New Orleans Hornets (98-90, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 21-32, 65.5%
    • 3PM-3PA (3P%): 3-5, 60%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 10-11, 90.9%
    • 55 PTS, 4 REB, 8 AST, 2 STL, 4 TO

17. 1993: David Robinson, C, SAS

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  • Date: May 7th, 1993
  • Opponent (Result): vs. Portland Trail Blazers (100-97, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 8-14, 57.1%
    • 3PM-3PA (3P%):
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 4-9, 44.4%
    • 20 PTS, 17 REB (1 ORB), 11 AST, 7 BLK, 2 TO
    • Triple-Double

16. 2011: Chris Paul, PG, NOH

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  • Date: April 24th, 2011
  • Opponent (Result): vs. Los Angeles Lakers (93-88, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 7-14, 50%
    • 3PM-3PA (3P%): 2-4, 50%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 11-11, 100%
    • 27 PTS, 13 REB (2 ORB), 15 AST, 2 STL, 5 TO
    • Triple-Double

15. 2005: Ray Allen, SG, SEA

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  • Date: May 1st, 2005
  • Opponent (Result): @ Sacramento Kings (115-102, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 17-28, 60.7%
    • 3PM-3PA (3P%): 6-14, 42.9%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 5-5, 100%
    • 45 PTS, 4 REB (1 ORB), 6 AST, 4 STL, 2 BLK, 3 TO

14. 2011: Carmelo Anthony, SF, NYK

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  • Date: April 19th, 2011
  • Opponent (Result): @ Boston Celtics (93-96, Loss)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 14-30, 46.7%
    • 3PM-3PA (3P%): 4-8, 50%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%):10-11, 90.9%
    • 42 PTS, 17 REB (5 ORB), 6 AST, 2 BLK, 1 TO
    • Double-Double

13. 1992: Michael Jordan, SG, CHI

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  • Date: April 24th, 1992
  • Opponent (Result): vs. Miami Heat (113-94, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 21-34, 61.8%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 4-4, 100%
    • 46 PTS, 11 REB (1 ORB), 9 AST, 3 STL, 1 BLK, 5 TO
    • Double-Double

12. 1994: Charles Barkley, PF, PHO

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  • Date: April 29th, 1994
  • Opponent (Result): vs. Golden State Warriors (111-104, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 14-24, 58.3%
    • 3PM-3PA (3P%): 1-3, 33.3%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 7-11, 63.6%
    • 36 PTS, 19 REB (7 ORB), 7 AST, 4 STL, 1 BLK, 5 TO
    • Double-Double

11. 1986: Michael Jordan, SG, CHI

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  • Date: April 20th, 1986
  • Opponent (Result): @ Boston Celtics (131-135, Loss)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 22-41, 53.7%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 19-21, 90.5%
    • 63 PTS, 5 REB (1 ORB), 6 AST, 3 STL, 2 BLK, 4 TO

10. 2007: Jason Kidd, PG, NJN

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  • Date: April 27th, 2007
  • Opponent (Result): vs. Toronto Raptors (102-89, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 7-14, 50%
    • 3PM-3PA (3P%): 2-8, 25%
    • 16 PTS, 16 REB (4 ORB), 19 AST, 3 STL, 1 BLK, 5 TO
    • Triple-Double

9. 2000: Gary Payton, PG, SEA

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  • Date: May 3rd, 2000
  • Opponent (Result): vs. Utah Jazz (104-93, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 11-23, 47.8%
    • 3PM-3PA (3P%): 3-7, 42.9%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 10-11, 90.9%
    • 35 PTS, 10 REB (2 ORB), 11 AST, 6 STL, 4 TO
    • Triple-Double

8. 2008: Pau Gasol, C, LAL

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  • Date: April 20th, 2008
  • Opponent (Result): vs. Denver Nuggets (128-114, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 14-20, 70%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 8-8, 100%
    • 36 PTS, 16 REB (3 ORB), 8 AST, 3 BLK, 3 TO
    • Double-Double

7. 2008: Kobe Bryant, SG, LAL

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  • Date: April 23rd, 2008
  • Opponent (Result): vs. Denver Nuggets (122-107, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 18-27, 66.7%
    • 3PM-3PA (3P%): 5-9, 55.6%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 8-9, 88.9%
    • 49 PTS, 4 REB (1 ORB), 10 AST, 1 STL, 1 BLK, 2 TO
    • Double-Double

6. 1992: Brad Daugherty, C, CLE

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  • Date: April 23rd, 1992
  • Opponent (Result): vs. New Jersey Nets (120-113, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 12-22, 54.5%
    • 3PM-3PA (3P%): 0-1, 0%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 16-17, 94.1%
    • 40 PTS, 16 REB (3 ORB), 9 AST, 1 STL, 2 BLK, 2 TO
    • Double-Double

5. 2008: LeBron James, SF, CLE

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  • Date: May 2nd, 2008
  • Opponent (Result): @ Washington Wizards (105-88, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 8-17, 47.1%
    • 3PM-3PA (3P%): 1-2, 50%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 10-10, 100%
    • 27 PTS, 13 REB (2 ORB), 13 AST, 2 STL, 1 BLK, 1 TO
    • Triple-Double

4. 1992: Michael Jordan, SG, CHI

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  • Date: April 29th, 1992
  • Opponent (Result): @ Miami Heat (119-114, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 20-30, 66.7%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 16-18, 88.9%
    • 56 PTS, 5 REB (1 ORB), 5 AST, 4 STL, 2 BLK, 2 TO

3. 1990: Patrick Ewing, C, NYK

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  • Date: May 4th, 1990
  • Opponent (Result): vs. Boston Celtics (135-108, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 18-24, 75%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 8-9, 88.9%
    • 44 PTS, 13 REB (2 ORB), 5 AST, 7 STL, 2 BLK, 3 TO
    • Double-Double

2. 2010: LeBron James, SF, CLE

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  • Date: April 25th, 2010
  • Opponent (Result): @ Chicago Bulls (121-98, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 11-17, 64.7%
    • 3PM-3PA (3P%): 6-9, 66.7%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 9-10, 90%
    • 37 PTS, 12 REB, 11 AST, 2 STL, 1 BLK, 2 TO
    • Triple-Double

1. 1994: Charles Barkley, PF, PHO

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  • Date: May 4th, 1994
  • Opponent (Result): @ Golden State Warriors (140-133, Win)
  • Stats:
    • FGM-FGA (FG%): 23-31, 74.2%
    • 3PM-3PA (3P%): 3-4, 75%
    • FTM-FTA (FT%): 7-9, 77.8%
    • 56 PTS, 14 REB (5 ORB), 4 AST, 3 STL, 1 BLK, 2 TO
    • Double-Double