We are currently in the three-point era of basketball, where teams and players want to hoist up as many good-quality threes as possible. The idea is simple: the three-point shot puts the most points on the board and more attempts mean more points. Thanks to the likes of Stephen Curry completely changing the game with his shooting, this style of basketball is probably here to stay. But this begs the question: which players in NBA history have missed the most three-point field goals?
Before Stephen Curry, we had the likes of Reggie Miller and even Ray Allen as the most impactful long-distance shooters in the league. But more attempts normally mean more misses, so it is expected that some of the greatest shooters ever will have the most threes missed. We have collected the 10 players with the most 3-pointers missed in NBA history, and there will be a ton of recognizable names that will appear.
10. Jason Kidd - 3,713 Misses
1,988 - 5,701(3PTM - 3PTA), 34.9 3PT%, 1,391 Games Played
Jason Kidd came into the league as a non-shooter and left it as a very respectable marksman. The superstar point guard was never considered an accurate three-point shooter, but he took a lot of them (especially as he started aging). With 5,701 attempts, Kidd certainly hoisted a lot of shots as he missed over 3,700 of them.
Kidd was at his best in transition, using his speed and physical strength to push the pace and finish in traffic. He was also effective in the post because he was generally stronger than most defenders in his position. Still, the point guard made a career out of making three-point shots and that is why he kicks off the list of players with the most threes missed over a career.
9. Kobe Bryant - 3,719 Misses
1,827 - 5,546 (3PTM - 3PTA), 32.9 3PT%, 1,346 Games Played
The great Kobe Bryant loved taking shots, whether they came from mid-range or the three-point line. The Black Mamba had the ultimate green light because he proved time and time again that he could make shots from anywhere against any opponent. Quite frankly, Bryant is the greatest tough-shot maker and it isn't close.
With the way Kobe approached the game, he took the bulk of the shots on the court no matter what anyone had to say about it. That often resulted in a poor field-goal percentage, as Bryant only shot 32.9% from three over his career. Kobe took a lot of bad bail-out shots for the Lakers, and he certainly did not mind taking threes with the game on the line either. Even if the Lakers legend missed 3,719 attempts, he is nowhere near the player with the most threes missed in NBA history.
8. Jason Terry - 3,728 Misses
2,282 - 6,010 (3PTM - 3PTA), 38.0 3PT%, 1,410 Games Played
The role player most responsible for helping Dirk Nowitzki capture the NBA title for the Mavericks in 2011, Jason Terry deserves more credit as a great three-point shooter. The 2009 6th Man of the Year hoisted over 6,000 threes in his career, missing over 3,700 of those shots. Terry was extremely consistent in getting good looks from three, and he was capable of creating his own offense as well.
Nailing 38.0% from three is well above-average, and he made a living from beyond the arc. Terry began his career with the Atlanta Hawks, attempting 4.4 threes per game on average before blossoming as a 6th man with the Mavericks. Even if Terry never made an All-Star Team, he was a very effective shooter from beyond which is why his misses are hardly a negative.
7. Vince Carter - 3,878 Misses
2,290 - 6,168 (3PTM - 3PTA), 37.1 3PT%, 1,541 Games Played
A great scorer and dunker in his prime, Vince Carter truly loved the three-point shot. He had deep range and did not mind taking a clutch three-pointer whenever necessary. The former 8-time All-Star attempted 6,168 three-pointers in his career, missing over 3,800 shots. Considering the fact that he played over 1,500 games, that is hardly a bad clip.
Carter is not recognized as one of the best shooters of his time, but there was no doubt that he was above-average at the very least. Vince knew the value of the three and could hoist them up whenever he wasn’t busy placing defenders on posters. For a player that played so long, averaging 37.1% from three is impressive.
6. LeBron James - 3,925 Misses
2,074 - 5,999 (3PTM - 3PTA), 34.6 3PT%, 1,343 Games Played
As LeBron James continues to defy Father Time, he has completely changed his game over the past few seasons. The King has realized that the three-point era is here to stay, and has revolutionized his style of playing offense. James is not a great 3-point shooter by nature, but his numbers have improved as he gained more experience in the league.
LeBron has attempted nearly 6,000 threes, missing almost 4,000 shots. That is good for a shade under 35%, a solid clip for a player known for his ability to attack the rim. LeBron appears on this list because he was forced to take more threes, and as long as he is shooting above 36% as he has over the last two seasons, The King should have the green light to hoist more outside shots.
5. Reggie Miller - 3,926 Misses
2,560 - 6,486 (3PTM - 3PTA), 39.5 3PT%, 1,389 Games Played
Before Ray Allen and Stephen Curry made their way into superstardom, Reggie Miller was the best shooter ever. He played in an era where three-pointers were not respected, and he hardly took enough of them. With a player of Miller’s skill set, he should have been playing in today’s era where he would be allowed to take a minimum of 10 three-pointers per game.
Miller, with over 500 more games played than Stephen Curry, attempted over 500 less threes in his career. That is astonishing to consider because he should have had 10,000 attempts before the end of his career. Reggie made 2,560 of his 6,486 attempts, good for a very solid 39.5% clip.
4. Stephen Curry - 4,020 Misses
3,028 - 7,048 (3PTM - 3PTA), 43.0 3PT%, 802 Games Played
The greatest 3-point shooter ever, Stephen Curry passed up Ray Allen for most threes made this season. As the superstar point guard continues to play the game his way, he will most likely have a record that will forever be unbroken. After all, look at Curry’s shooting numbers.
In only 802 games played, Curry has already attempted over 7,000 threes and nailed 43.0% of them. We have not seen a more accurate shooter than Steph in NBA history, and he has a lot left in the tank. The fact that he has missed over 4,000 shots from beyond does not matter, because he has the ultimate green light on the court.
3. Jamal Crawford - 4,158 Misses
2221 - 6379 (3PTM - 3PTA), 34.8 3PT%, 1,327 Games Played
It may seem surprising to see 3-time 6th Man of the Year winner Jamal Crawford so high up, but the shooting guard made a living with the three-point shot. A player who is considered one of the greatest ball-handlers ever, Crawford was very capable of creating his own shots from beyond the arc.
Crawford is one of the greatest players ever in drawing fouls from the three-point line, and would often knock the shot before heading to the stripe. Nowadays, we see a ton of players who force the refs to blow the whistle on outside shots. With over 6,000 threes attempted, Crawford missed over 4,000 of them which constitutes an average 34.8% shooting percentage.
2. Ray Allen - 4,456 Misses
2,973 - 7,429 (3PTM - 3PTA), 40.0 3PT%, 1,300 Games Played
Arguably a top-two three-point shooter ever, Ray Allen is second on the all-time three-point misses after getting past by one current player this season. It seems Allen is getting passed up by modern shooters left and right because the modern era of basketball requires spacing more than ever.
Had Allen played in today’s, he would have probably taken more threes which meant more makes and more misses. Still, the fact that the Hall of Famer hoisted over 7,400 threes and made over 2,900 is very impressive. A 40.0% 3-PT FG percentage is well above-average, which means his misses are hardly a negative thing.
1. James Harden - 4,466 Misses
2,537 - 7,003 (3PTM - 3PTA), 36.2 3PT%, 916 Games Played
James Harden managed to lead the league in threes made twice but is also a player who absolutely loves the three-point shot. The Beard loves jacking up threes and started showcasing the beginning of his patented step-back three which often came with foul calls before his MVP season in 2018. Harden loved flailing on his shots, drawing fouls, and normally hitting shots as well.
Harden’s outside prowess was also a major reason the Houston Rockets became title contenders that came awfully close to defeating the Warriors in the Western Conference Finals. Even if The Beard is not as efficient from three as his career 3-PT percentage suggests (34.1%), he is taking a lot of outside shots and that will continue on his quest to build an unbreakable record.