Offensive basketball is entertaining basketball, or at least that’s how most fans think. Notably, the NBA has always been scorer’s league, and that’s a trend that’s only going to continue.
Hence, most kids that dream of making it to the NBA spend most of their time practicing on their offense. Spot-up shots, pull-up, catch-and-shoot, dribbling, floaters, finishing through contact, etcetera.
Young ballers try to copy what they see on the TV, and that’s something you can tell from the rookies that enter the league. But, which are the hooper children try to copy nowadays? Let’s take a look at the top 10 leading scorers of the decade.
10. Carmelo Anthony – 12,840 Points
The fact that a scorer like Carmelo Anthony still hasn’t signed with any team at this point of the offseason is just disrespectful. You can say a lot of things about him and you may not like the way he plays, but he’s always been a walking bucket.
Melo led the league in scoring in 2013 with 28% shooting on 44% from the floor and has never averaged less than 20.8 points per game until his last two seasons in the league. How fast they forget.
9. Damian Lillard – 12,909 Points
Damian Lillard has only been in the NBA for 7 years but he’s already climbed all the way to the 9th spot of our list — and that should tell you everything you need to know about him and his game.
Lillard may not be a good defender or a pass-first kind of point guard, but he keeps improving as a scorer year after year. He’s a certified bucket in the clutch and has never averaged under 19.0 points per game.
8. Blake Griffin – 13,200 Points
I think people don’t give Blake Griffin enough credit nowadays. He’s always delivered when his team needs him the most but hasn’t found success in the playoffs, thus taking a toll on the way we look at him.
Still, Griffin has been a dominant scorer since entering the league in 2011 despite only adding the three-point shot to his repertoire four years ago. Also, he’s scored 13,200 points despite missing a combined 108 games on his career.
7. LaMarcus Aldridge – 13,820 Points
Following a subpar rookie season, LaMarcus Aldridge has never averaged less than 17.3 points per game. He’s not a physical player or a consistent three-point shooter, but he has mastered the art of scoring in the post.
Perhaps he’s not the type of player that can lead a team to a Championship, but he’s a great second scorer. He took Dirk Nowitzki’s turnaround and made it his own, he’s just always lacked aggressiveness.
6. DeMar DeRozan – 14,269 Points
It took a while for DeMar DeRozan to find success in this league and he doesn’t get enough respect nowadays. Still, he led his Raptors to the playoffs year after year despite not having a true scorer next to him.
DeRozan copied the moves of Kobe and Wade but gave it his own personal touch. Even more impressive DeRozan is the fact that he’s scored over 4,000 points while shooting just 28% from beyond the arc.
5. Stephen Curry – 14,916 Points
Over his 10-year career in the NBA, Stephen Curry has knocked down 2,483 three-pointers. That means 7,449 of the 14,916 points he’s scored have come from beyond the arc, representing 49.9% of his points.
Curry forces defenders to guard him at halfcourt thanks to his unlimited range, but he’s way more than just a three-point shooter. He’s got some of the best handles in the league and is also very efficient when he has to finish around the basket.
4. Russell Westbrook – 16,281 Points
Russell Westbrook is the kind of guy that could beat almost every player in the league one-on-one. He’s strong, fast, agile, extremely athletic, and has a lot of different ways of impacting the game.
You may argue he tends to care too much about his own stats, but you just can’t deny he’s one of the league’s most dominant scorers. He’s led the NBA in scoring twice, averaging 28.1, and 31.6 points, respectively.
3. Kevin Durant – 16,973 Points
Before he came into the league, we had never seen anything slightly similar to Kevin Durant. He’s a shooting guard trapped in a center’s body, and that makes him impossible to keep in check.
Durant can score from all three levels and his size gives him a huge advantage over most defenders. He can drive, pull-up from three, and even finish through contact despite not being among the strongest players in the league.
2. LeBron James – 17,292 Points
LeBron James is the synonym of consistency. Since he entered the league in 2003, he’s never averaged less than 20.9 points per game, and it doesn’t look like he’s going to slow down any time soon.
What impresses the most about James’ scoring is the fact that he does it not only at a high volume but also very efficiently. He takes 19.6 shots per game and shoots 50% from the floor, which is absurd for a perimeter player.
1. James Harden – 17,874 Points
James Harden hacked the NBA. He is playing with the league’s rules and bending them in his favor, so even if you don’t like what he does, you have to admit it takes a lot of skills and brains to do it.
Harden is a master at drawing contact and has scored 5,604 points from the line throughout his career. But he can also put the moves on any defender in the world.
His step-back three is unguardable, even if he tends to travel every now and then.