Giannis rewrote NBA Finals record books with his legendary Game 6

  • Co-author, Pro Basketball Prospectus series
  • Formerly a consultant with the Indiana Pacers
  • Developed WARP rating and SCHOENE system

How does Giannis Antetokounmpo’s performance in Game 6 of the NBA Finals as the Bucks closed out the Phoenix Suns for Milwaukee’s first championship since 1971 compare to the greatest single-game efforts in Finals history?

On a night when no other Bucks player scored more than 17 points, Antetokounmpo powered his team to victory after trailing by five at halftime. His 50 points tied Bob Pettit in the 1958 Finals for the most ever in a title-clinching game, per ESPN Stats & Information research, and Antetokounmpo’s 17 free throws were a new playoff career high.

Add in five blocks — also his most ever in a playoff game — and Antetokounmpo was dominant at both ends.

Let’s go back in Finals history to give a sense of how Antetokounmpo’s play on Tuesday stacks up.

Quantifying Giannis’ epic Game 6

According to game score, a measure designed by John Hollinger to summarize box score stats, Antetokounmpo’s 42.0 score on Tuesday was the best of his playoff career by a wide margin. His previous high was 37.4 in Game 3 of this series, Milwaukee’s first of four consecutive wins after losing the first two contests in Phoenix.

Such performances are rare in the crucible of the Finals.

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