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LeBron James of the Cleveland Cavaliers scored 51 points in a losing effort against the Golden State Warriors in game 1 of 2017 - 2018 NBA finals. That made James the 6th player ever to score 50+ points in the NBA finals, but he also became the first person in that list to lose the game.

What are the top 5 scoring performances in the NBA finals that resulted in a loss?

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Using Basketball Reference's Player Game Finder with the following search criteria:

In a single game, from 1964 to 2018, in the playoffs, round is Finals, team lost game, sorted by descending Points

The top 5 scoring performances in the NBA finals that resulted in a loss are:

1) LeBron James - 51 points, Game 1, 2018 NBA Finals (Cavaliers at Warriors)

T2) Jerry West - 45 points, Game 4, 1966 NBA Finals (Celtics at Lakers)

T2) Jerry West - 45 points, Game 2, 1965 NBA Finals (Lakers at Celtics)

T4) LeBron James - 44 points, Game 1, 2015 NBA Finals (Cavaliers at Warriors)

T4) Shaquille O'Neal - 44 points, Game 1, 2001 NBA Finals (76ers at Lakers)

T4) Michael Jordan - 44 points, Game 3, 1993 NBA Finals (Suns at Bulls)

T4) Rick Barry - 44 points, Game 6, 1967 NBA Finals (76ers at Warriors)

  • Thanks for the answer, please indicate the teams playing and I will accept your answer – alamoot Jun 4 '18 at 12:02
  • @alamoot Teams have been added – aweinschenker Jun 4 '18 at 12:05
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#1. 63 points: Michael Jordan & Chicago Bulls

#2. 61 points - Ray Allen & Boston Celtics

#3.1 51 points - Russell Westbrook & Oklahoma Thunder

  • April 19, 2017 - Western Conference Quarter Finals; Oklahoma Thunder Vs. Houston Rockets. Houston won: 115 - 111

#3.2 51 points - LeBron James & Cleveland Cavaliers

#4.1 50 points - Bill Cunningham & Philadelphia 76ers

#4.2 50 points - Michael Jordan & Chicago Bulls

#4.3 50 points - Kobe Bryant & Los Angeles Lakers

Additional Reference: List of National Basketball Association single-game playoff scoring leaders

  • Your response seems to be answering highest points scored in a loss in any playoff games, which is not exactly what I asked. My question is targeting exactly the NBA finals. – alamoot Jun 2 '18 at 18:57

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