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Thursday, March 29, 2007

NBA Leaderboard, Part XIV

Kobe Bryant took a narrow lead in the race for the scoring title prior to Leaderboard XIII. Then, he started channeling the spirit of Wilt Chamberlain, producing a total of four straight 50-plus point games and tacking on 43 points in the fifth game for good measure. He slumped to 23 points in his most recent game but has a commanding lead over Carmelo Anthony and Gilbert Arenas. Meanwhile, the Dallas Mavericks keep rolling right along and are still in the hunt for 70 wins.

Best Five Records
-------------------

1) Dallas Mavericks, 60-11
2) Phoenix Suns, 53-17
3) San Antonio Spurs, 51-20
4) Utah Jazz, 47-24
5) Detroit Pistons, 45-25

Dallas went 6-0 since the last leaderboard, Phoenix went 3-1 and San Antonio went 5-0. ABC can hype the Mavericks-Suns showdown all it wants--and the game does figure to be fun to watch--but the Suns should be more worried about holding off the surging Spurs than catching the Mavericks.

Top Five Scorers (and a few other notables)
------------------

1) Kobe Bryant, LAL 30.8 ppg
2) Carmelo Anthony, DEN 29.0 ppg
3) Gilbert Arenas, WSH 28.8 ppg
4) Dwyane Wade, MIA 28.7 ppg
5) LeBron James, CLE 27.3 ppg

7) Allen Iverson, DEN 26.9 ppg

10) Dirk Nowitzki, DAL 24.9 ppg
11) Vince Carter, NJN 24.8 ppg
12) Tracy McGrady, HOU 24.3 ppg

Kobe Bryant's surge to the top has been well documented here. Meanwhile, both Carmelo Anthony and Allen Iverson's scoring averages are dropping. Anthony could easily fall to third place by the next leaderboard and LeBron James has already supplanted Iverson in the top five.

Top Five Rebounders (and a few other notables)
----------------------

1) Kevin Garnett, MIN 12.7 rpg
2) Tyson Chandler, NOK 12.4 rpg
3) Dwight Howard, ORL 12.2 rpg
4) Carlos Boozer, UTA 11.8 rpg
5) Al Jefferson, BOS 11.0 rpg
6) Tim Duncan, SAS 10.7 rpg
7) Ben Wallace, CHI 10.6 rpg
8) Shawn Marion, PHX 10.1 rpg

22) Jason Kidd, NJN 8.0 rpg

26) Rasheed Wallace, DET 7.8 rpg

The top four are familiar names but a new player has moved into fifth place: Al Jefferson of the Boston Celtics. He is having a very solid year for a very bad team, averaging 15.6 ppg while shooting .509 from the field in addition to his rebounding exploits. You hardly ever hear anything about Tim Duncan this season but he has inched his way up to sixth. Ben Wallace has supposedly been a disappointment yet he is seventh in the league in rebounding, is averaging a career high in assists and is blocking shots at nearly the same rate that he did last year.

Top Five Playmakers
----------------------

1) Steve Nash, PHX 11.5 apg
2) Deron Williams, UTA 9.5 apg
3) Jason Kidd, NJN 9.1 apg
4) Chris Paul, NOK 8.6 apg
5) Baron Davis, GSW 8.2 apg

Once again, no news to report here.

Starbury is hanging on to the 20th spot (5.6 apg).

Note: All statistics are from ESPN.com

posted by David Friedman @ 9:35 PM

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