Points Per Shot – Career Average:
1. LeBron James: 1.38
2. Michael Jordan*: 1.35
3. Kobe Bryant**: 1.29
*only includes Jordan’s years as a Chicago Bull
**only includes Kobe’s years as a starter
Points Per Shot – Career High:
1. LeBron James: 1.54 (2014)
2. Michael Jordan: 1.46 (1989)
3. Kobe Bryant: 1.38 (2007)
Points Per Shot – Year to Year:
This chart is interesting.
If you didn’t know, MJ never again put up a PER of 30.0 or better after he won his first ring in 1991 – his 7th season. All of his four 30.0+ PER seasons happened before that. And as you can see in this chart, his 7th season is also when his points per shot average started to slide. Then he retired, briefly.
So we see his first ring as a demarcation point – where MJ’s efficiency numbers started to decline.
Now, if you think Jordan only retired in 1993 because of his father’s murder – you’re mistaken. MJ was struggling with maintaining interest in the game, and general motivation, since at least 1992 – long before his dad died. So it would make sense that his regular season focus wasn’t going to be as sharp as it was before he won his first ring. And – of course – Air Jordan still turned everything back on during the playoffs.
LeBron’s numbers, on the other hand, keep climbing after his first championship. Not only did his points per shot increase during his 2nd championship run, but so did his PER (30.7 to 31.6). In fact, his points per shot has increased each of the last three years from 1.43 in 2012 to 1.50 in 2013 to 1.54 in 2014 – right along with his field goal percentage.
LBJ has found a way to keep winning AND keep improving.