Shaquille O’Neal was quite appreciative of the current generation while listing players with a chance to score more than Kobe’s 81 points in a game.
Kobe Bryant’s 81-point performance against the Toronto Raptors back in 2006, is one the most iconic offensive performances in the league’s history. Kobe’s performance against the Raptors ranks second on the list of most points scored in a game, only behind Wilt Chamberlain’s legendary 100-point performance.
In a recent interview at the Dan Patrick Show, Former Los Angeles Lakers legend Shaquille O’Neal was asked who he thought, among the current NBA players, could surpass Bryant’s career-high 81-point outing. Shaq named the five players whose offensive arsenal he trusted was deadly enough to surpass Kobe’s 81 points:
“If anybody can do it, I think it can be James (Harden), Kyrie, KD, Steph, Devin Booker. Those are all the names that come to my mind right now that could probably surpass that.”
Shaquille O’Neal believes James Harden, Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, Devin Booker and Kyrie Irving are all capable of surpassing Kobe Bryant’s 81 points.https://t.co/tD23vJiFQf
— LakeShow (@LakeShowCP) March 2, 2021
Shaquille O’Neal stated what all it would’ve taken for him to tie Wilt Chamberlain’s 100-point game
Shaq, himself too, was an offensive threat inside the paint. He had a career average of 23.7 points per game. Shaq himself had a career-high of 61 points. When asked if he could’ve tied Wilt Chamberlain’s 100-point performance, Shaq explained what all it would’ve taken for him to score the bizarre number of points:
“I would have to be shooting 75% from the free-throw line, I would have to have a great night. I would have to have a lot of three seconds calls not called. Would’ve had to have a lot of easy points and I’ll have to have no double or triple team. It would be possible.”
Shaq wasn’t Kobe’s teammate when the Black Mamba had the famous 81-point night. The 7-foot-1 center did have ample chances to watch Kobe go off when they were teammates.
Even though it is highly unlikely that we see Bryant’s career-high been surpassed any time soon, it isn’t completely impossible. The league has been becoming more fast-paced than before, and teams shooting more three-point shots. These five players might actually have a real shot at scoring more than 81 points in a game.