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NBA

NBA 2019-20: The 50-point club

Last season (2018-19), 13 different players scored 50 or more points - the most for a single season in NBA history.

At the time of suspension, the 2019-20 season had 11 different players scoring 50 or more.

Here's a look at the 50-point club for the 2019-20 season and the multiple records each player broke or set en route to putting on a show for the fans.

James Harden

James Harden, the league's scoring leader at an average of 34.4 points per game, has the most 50-point games this season at five.

In those five games, the Rockets went 4-1. Here's a quick look at those games and the records Harden broke or set en route to these outbursts in chronological order:

59 points on Oct. 30 @ Wizards

In the third-highest scoring game in NBA history, Harden scored 38 of his 59 (18-of-32 FG) in the second half to help the Houston Rockets come from 10 points down with 4:27 left in regulation to edge the Washington Wizards 159-158.

He iced the contest with his game-winning free-throw while also dishing out nine assists and nearly going perfect from the free-throw line (17-of-18 FT) in 37:30 minutes of action. With this 50-point showcase, Harden had recorded at least one 50-point game in six straight seasons - a streak that ranks second all-time, trailing only to Wilt Chamberlain's 10.

"Work, every single day, I fell in love with it... You can't expect to be great if you don't put the work in," Harden said postgame.

60 points on Nov. 30 vs. Hawks

The Beard capped off the month of November, where he averaged 39.5 points in 15 games, with a season-high 60 (16-of-24 FG; 20-of-23 FT) in a 158-111 win at home. After 31 in the first half, he scored 29 in the third quarter to finish with 60 in just 30:41 minutes of action, all in the first three-quarters of the game.

His 24 field goal attempts are the fewest ever in a 60-point game and with this outburst, he tied Michael Jordan for the third most 60-point games in NBA history.

"That's greatness right there," Harden said postgame on joining the likes of Wilt Chamberlain, Kobe Bryant and Jordan for most 60-point games ever.

50 points on Dec. 3 @ Spurs

Harden joined the likes of Bryant and Chamberlain as the only players ever to follow a 60-point performance with a 50-point game.

However, in a 135-133 double-overtime win, despite Harden's 50 (24-of-24 FT), the Spurs came from 22 points behind a career performance from Lonnie Walker (28 points off the bench) and some clutch plays by DeMar DeRozan.

This is the only time this season that Harden has scored 50 or more and the Rockets have lost. For his career, this was the seventh such occasion - fourth most all-time.

55 points on Dec. 11 @ Cavaliers

Attempting just five free-throws for the game, Harden tied a career-high with 10 three-pointers as he led the Rockets to a 116-110 win in Cleveland.

54 points on Dec. 13 @ Orlando

Becoming only the second player in NBA history after Stephen Curry in 2016 to knock down 10 or more three-pointers in consecutive games, Harden raced to 54 in Orlando in a comfortable 130-107 win for the Rockets.

Damian Lillard

Pretty early on in the 2018-19 season, the Portland Trail Blazers were hit hard by the injury bug. All through the season, Damian Lillard led from the front, averaging a career-high 28.9 points per game prior to the suspension of the season.

With four 50-point games, where the Trail Blazers went 3-1, he is tied with James Harden for the most 50-point game in the 2019-20 season. Here's a quick look at all of them:

60 points on Nov. 8 vs Nets

Lillard set multiple records - career-high and franchise-high - as he went off for 60 (19-of-33 FG; 15-of-15 FT) at home but it wasn't enough. Kyrie Irving and Spencer Dinwiddie combined for 67 including some clutch buckets from the former to win the nail-biter 119-115.

It was the first 60-point game of his career and the sixth 50-point game of his career, a Trail Blazers record.

61 points vs Jan. 20 vs. Warriors

A couple of months later, Lillard went one better, erupting for 61 in a clutch historic performance as he led the team to a 129-124 overtime win. He went off 61 points - a new career-high, franchise record, and an MLK-day record - which included a franchise-record 11 three-pointers.

His clutch performance included a late three to fuel a Blazers run in the closing seconds of regulation and then in overtime, he scored seven of the Blazers' game-sealing 14-3 run.

He became the first player in NBA history to record at least 60 points while knocking down 10+ three-pointers. He joined an elite list of scorers of Wilt Chamberlain, Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, Michael Jordan, and James Harden to record multiple career 60-point games.

50 points vs. Jan. 26 vs. Pacers

Less than 24 hours after the tragic passing of Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant, Lillard put on a show. He went off 50 points and dished out 13 assists, finishing with a team-high +19 in 38 minutes of action in the 139-129 win.

"That's what (Kobe) would want us all to do…to continue to play the game that we all love & honor his competitiveness," Lillard said postgame.

With this game, he became the first player in franchise history to have three straight 40+ games (61, 47, 50).

51 points vs. Feb. 1 vs. Jazz

Coming off an absolutely spectacular 48-point triple-double in a win against the Lakers on an emotional night at the Staples Center, Lillard, on the second night of a back-to-back, hadn't cooled down.

He went off 51 points and 12 assists against the Jazz in a 124-107 win. This was the fifth in the last six games that he had finished with more than 47 points and he became the first player in NBA history to knock down six 3-pointers in six straight games.

Bradley Beal

53 points on Feb. 23 @ Bulls

With starting point guard John Wall ruled out for the season, Bradley Beal was the fulcrum of the Washington Wizards this season, especially on offense.

Against the Chicago Bulls, he erupted for a career-high 53 (15-of-27 FG; 18-of-20 FT) points but it wasn't enough. Led by rookie Coby White's 33 points off the bench and Zach LaVine's 32, the Bulls clinched this game 126-117.

After this game, the Wizards had a record of 1-7 when Beal scored 40 or more this season.

55 points on Feb. 24 vs. Bucks

The following night at home, Beal set a new career-high 55, this time against the league-best in the Milwaukee Bucks. Once again, however, it wasn't enough. He took the Wizards close but they eventually lost 137-134 as the Bucks were led by Khris Middleton's 40 points.

With this 55-point showing, Beal became the first player since Kobe Bryant in 2007 to score 50 or more in consecutive days.

Kyrie Irving

50 points on Oct. 23 vs. Timberwolves

What a way to begin your new career with a new franchise.

In his Nets debut, Kyrie Irving went off 50 points (17-of-33 FG; 7-of-14 3P; 9-of-10 FT), the most scored in the NBA for a team debut. This was the fifth-highest scoring game in franchise history and third time Irving had scored 50 or more.

However, behind a monster performance from Karl-Anthony Towns (36 points, 14 rebounds, three assists, three steals, and three blocks), Irving's performance went in vain as the Nets lost in overtime 127-126.

54 points on Jan. 31 vs. Bulls

Leading into this game, Irving had missed 28 of the team's 35 games, but nearly three months since his thrilling Nets debut, he outdid himself.

Against the Bulls, he scored 54 points on 82.6% from the field (19-of-23 FG) in a 133-118 home win. Only two other players in NBA history have scored 50 or more and shot that well from the field - Michael Jordan and Wilt Chamberlain. With this game, Irving became the only Nets player ever to have multiple 50-point games in a single season.

"I hit a few shots in the first half so I had to keep it going and Kobe mentality, Mamba mentality, keep going, keep going, so it felt good," Irving said postgame.

D'Angelo Russell

52 points on Nov. 8 @ Timberwolves

Russell exploded for a career-high 52 points, becoming the 14th player in franchise history to score 50 or more. He became the fourth player in NBA history to score 50 or more in their first 10 games with a team.

However, in the overtime clash at Minneapolis, Andrew Wiggins led the Timberwolves to a 125-119 win with a career-high 40 points.

Caris LeVert

51 points on Mar. 3 @ Celtics

Three quarters into this game, the Nets are trailing 84-67 and Caris LeVert has just 14 points.

The next 17 minutes, it was the LeVert show. Over the fourth quarter and extra period, the Nets outscored the Celtics 62-36 led by 37 (11-of-16 FG; 4-of-7 3P) from LeVert. Finishing with a career-high 51, three days after he recorded his first career triple-double, he helped the Nets pull off an impressive 129-120 road victory in Boston.

With his performance, the Nets had multiple players with 50-point games for the first time in franchise history.

Khris Middleton

51 points on Jan. 28 vs. Wizards

With the reigning MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo not playing, Khris Middleton took over the scoring load for the Bucks...and how. He went off for a career-high 51 points (16-of-26 FG; 7-of-10 3P; 12-of-12 FT) in a 151-133 home win against the Washington Wizards.

He became the third player in franchise history after Michael Redd and Brandon Jennings to score at least 50 while making 5 3-pointers in a game.

Giannis Antetokounmpo

50 points on Nov. 25 vs. Jazz

With Khris Middleton out of action in this one, the Bucks needed every one of Giannis Antetokounmpo's 50 points. He led them to a 122-118 home win by finishing with 50 points, 14 rebounds, and six assists in 38:29 minutes.

This was his second career 50-point game, tying him with Michael Redd for second-most in Bucks history. He has a long way to go on that list but he was the first player in franchise history to score 50 with zero turnovers.

Anthony Davis

50 points on Dec. 8 vs. Timberwolves

Anthony Davis reached his first 50-point game as a Laker in his 23rd game for the franchise - the third quickest in franchise history. Other than his points tally, he finished with seven rebounds, six assists, and four steals in a 142-125 home win.

He became the third Lakers in the past decade to score 50 or more after Kobe Bryant and LeBron James. In the past decade, Davis is responsible for three of the four times NBA players have scored 50 or more without a shot from beyond the arc.

Eric Gordon

50 points on Jan. 27 @ Jazz

In the middle of a four-game road trip, the Rockets were suiting up in Salt Lake City without James Harden and Russell Westbrook. In addition, the Jazz were coming off wins in 19 of their last 21 games.

The stakes were stacked up against the Rockets but then, Eric Gordon put on a show. He erupted for a career-high 50 points (14-of-22 FG; 16-of-20 FT) as the Rockets pulled off an impressive 126-117 road victory.

With this game, the Rockets had two different players scoring 50 or more in a single season for the first time in franchise history. This was the first time in 11 years that Gordon had scored more than 40, let alone 50.

Trae Young

50 points on Feb. 20 vs. Heat

Leading into the final period, the Hawks were trailing 97-90 and then their point guard engineered a win against a competitive Miami Heat squad. He scored 20 of the team's 39 fourth-quarter points as they outscored the Heat 39-27 to lead the Hawks to an impressive 129-124 home win.

He became the fourth-youngest player in NBA history to score 50 or more. In addition, he was the first Hawks player to score 50 since Shareef Abdul-Rahim in 2001.

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