When it comes to scoring the ball, these guys are at the top of the game. Any NBA player can have a big night and score a lot of points, but only a select few are capable of doing it on a nightly basis. Scoring consistency is very hard to find, especially at a high level that is comparable to the best in the league.
Scoring over 20 points a game over a season is no easy feat, and requires a lot of dedication to their craft. The top scorers in the league must have a mix of special offensive skills, along with mental and physical fortitude that comes with carrying such a heavy scoring burden. Many players suffer from burnout as the season progresses, and are incapable of consistently scoring the ball for their teams.
However, these players will stand out as the very best in the league. Ranked from 10 to 1, here are the predicted scoring leaders in the coming NBA season.
10. Joel Embiid – 27.0 PPG
Joel Embiid is quite possibly the best big man in the East, thanks to his tremendous skill at his size. Embiid has the skills of a guard, including quick feet and dribbling ability. He can beat the opposing big off the dribble, pull up from mid-range, and even drain threes at a decent clip. When he decides to put his back to the basket, he is unstoppable when he gets going.
Overall, Embiid is a nightmare to defend when his jumper is falling and he gets a few easy buckets at the rim. Expect Embiid to average nearly 27 points per game in a very dominating season.
9. LeBron James – 27.2 PPG
LeBron James will return this season with an added hunger to prove his worth to the league and remind everyone why he has been the best player in the league for the past decade. James will always find scoring the ball easily, due to his tremendous size and strength.
James is physically gifted and can hurt you in many different ways. Even if his jump-shooting is not on par with the very best shooters in the league, James will always manage to find a way to drop 30 points in his sleep.
Even though James is known for his gift of passing, he will return next season as one of the top scorers in the league. He will most likely not be among the top 5 scorers this season, thanks to the presence of AD. LeBron will give AD the priority of scoring the basketball at a very high clip while James focuses his efforts on distributing the ball effectively.
8. Kawhi Leonard – 27.6 PPG
Kawhi Leonard was extremely dominant last season, scoring over 26 points per game when he was healthy enough to play. Even if Kawhi takes some games off this season, he will manage to match his scoring production of last season to lead his team to a Top-2 team in the West.
Leonard will return with his silky smooth jumper, his strength at finishing with contact, and his excellent back-down game. Leonard has mastered the fadeaway jumper and will drain the shot every time unless double-teamed.
While Leonard is recognized for his defensive abilities, he closely matches his offensive production thanks to his sublime skillset. Leonard will be one of the best scorers in the league once again.
7. Devin Booker – 28.5 PPG
Devin Booker will be expected to take another step this year, improving his efficiency at scoring the basketball. He will most likely enter the season stronger, better, and more experienced. Booker will showcase an array of offensive skills including an improved jumper from mid-range and from three, along with the ability to finish in traffic.
Expect Booker to have a fantastic season, averaging around 27 ppg to finish the season.
6. Paul George – 28.6 PPG
Paul George had a career year last season, averaging 28 points per game in a very dominating season. He was also third place in MVP voting, mainly due to his impact on the offensive end.
He was so dominant, that Russel Westbrook was forced to take a step back and allow George to prosper as the first option on the team. George has it all on offense, including deep-range shooting and finishing at the rim. He has showcased an excellent ability to create space with his dribbling, and use an array of jumpers to hurt his opponents.
George is ready to score a ton once again, and lead his team to a deep playoff run.
5. Damian Lillard – 29.3 PPG
Lillard will have another fantastic season for the Trail Blazers, leading them to the Playoffs in a very crowded Western Conference.
Lillard is a supremely gifted shooter, and can even challenge the likes of Stephen Curry with his long-range shooting. Lillard is a marksman of the highest order and has a gift to drain shots from anywhere past half court. If you make the mistake of playing him one-on-one as the shot clock expires, you are in deep trouble.
Dame is as cold-blooded clutch as you can get, and will put you away in an instant. Lillard will come out guns blazing, looking to dominate all the guards in the league for a chance at making the All-NBA First Team.
4. Giannis Antetokounmpo – 30.0 PPG
Giannis became MVP last season, thanks to his terrific season offensively where he averaged nearly 28 points per game.
Giannis is unstoppable on the inside, thanks to his inhumane wingspan. He can simply flip shots up at the rim when he is near the basket and has the ability to draw contact and finish in traffic. Giannis is also possibly the best player in the league on the break, as he can reach the other end of the floor in just a few steps.
We have never seen a player quite like the Greek Freak, and he will manage to average over 27 points per game even without the presence of a consistent (albeit improving) jumper.
3. James Harden – 31.3 PPG
MVP runner-up James Harden put forth a historically special season last year, averaging 36 points per game and completely taking over the Rockets offense all season long. Harden was forced to score almost every time down the court, thanks to the decline of his All-Star point guard and lack of productivity from the rest of the supporting cast. Quite simply, Harden carried the Rockets offensively.
Expect Harden to have more help this season with the acquisition of Russel Westbrook, but also expect another fantastic offensive season from The Beard. Harden will find it easier to score a lot of points than ever before and will be a major factor for the Rockets Playoff run.
2. Anthony Davis – 31.4 PPG
Anthony Davis will start the season with a bang, showcasing offensive dominance from the frontcourt. He will also be among the favorites for the MVP, thanks to his partnership with LeBron who will allow him to prosper.
LeBron will most likely take a number 2 role on offense, allowing Davis to get the touches he needs to punish the opposition on the inside and the outside. Davis has the skills of a guard, in the body of a very long 7-foot center. He is another player that has it all on offense and is pretty much unstoppable when he gets going.
AD will have a very dominating season for the Lakers, averaging nearly 30 points per game.
1. Stephen Curry – 31.7 PPG
Two-time MVP Steph Curry will have a terrific offensive season, mostly due to his heavy offensive workload with Klay’s injury. He is still the greatest shooter of all time and will drop multiple threes per game as effortlessly as possible.
Curry will be the focal point of the Warrior’s offense and will be required to score the ball at a very high rate for his team to be successful and he will also be hungry to prove his worth once again and remind everyone that he was the player that changed the direction of the league.
Steph Curry’ three-point shooting has changed the game, with many teams striving to shoot three-pointers to match his production. He will dominate the league en route to adding another scoring title to his resume.