It is no secret that father time is undefeated, especially in the world of sports. As athletes begin to reach their mid to late thirties, it becomes increasingly difficult to perform at a high level. However, with it comes exceptions.
This past week, a 37-year-old Lebron James had another signature performance, scoring a whopping 56 points against the Golden State Warriors. He continues to be one of the best players in the entire NBA, averaging over 29 points per game despite playing in his 19th NBA season.
His scoring outing puts James on a shortlist of the oldest players to score 50 in a game, but not the oldest. This article will cover the five oldest players to score 50 points in an NBA game.
5. Alex English: 35 years and 64 days old
An underrated all-time player, the former Denver Nugget was capable of scoring in high volumes well into his thirties. He is 20th all time in points, and selected into the hall of fame in 1997.
In 1989, English had one final masterclass of a performance remaining at the ripe age of 35, where he would score 51 points against the Miami Heat in their first season of existence. On top of the 50 point outburst, English still had time to dish out ten assists.
Denver would actually go on to lose the game 131-130 after English missed the potential game-winning shot. While it ended in a loss, it remains one of the best offensive performances of all-time by a player of his age.
4. Lebron James: 37 years and 65 days old
Lebron’s performance last Saturday lands him the fourth spot on the list. With the Lakers struggling to stay in the play-in standings, Lebron has been forced to take over games while being surrounded by a mediocre roster.
James continues to defy the odds, and is well on his way of being the all-time leading scorer. With no signs of the king slowing down, it is possible he ends up placing higher on this list once his career comes to an end.
3. Kobe Bryant: 37 years and 234 days old
The most famous games on the list, Kobe’s final game not only put him as the third-oldest player to score 50, but also the oldest to drop 60. Bryant did not hesitate to shoot, taking 50 shot attempts over the course of the game.
With all of Hollywood’s biggest stars in attendance, Kobe did not fail in putting on a show, despite the Lakers being one of the worst teams in the NBA at the time. Bryant’s 60-piece in his final game as a professional is stuff of legend, and will likely never be replicated again.
2. Michael Jordan: 38 years and 315 days old
Who else but the GOAT? While Michael Jordan’s time with the Wizards did not go perfectly, he still was able to put together some incredible scoring performances while playing for the team.
At 38 years old, Jordan dropped 51 against the Hornets in a 17 point win. Despite being three years removed from his last season with Chicago, Jordan proved he still had more left in the tank.
1. Jamal Crawford 39 years and 20 days old
With a list filled with hall-of-famers and all-time legends, who could have expected that Jamal Crawford would be the oldest player to score 50 in a game. On the same night Dirk Nowitzki and Dwyane Wade played their last games in the NBA, Crawford proved that it was his farewell tour that all fans should have been paying attention to.
Against Dirk and the Mavericks, Crawford would go on to drop 51 points in an eleven point loss. Crawford would actually take less shots than Nowitzki in the game, and outdid the legend’s 30 point total.
Crawford, along with all other players on the list, proved that age is nothing but a number when it comes to getting buckets.
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