Giannis Antetokounmpo most points in a game: How Bucks star set new career high, franchise record with 64 vs. Pacers

What has long felt like an inevitability became a reality on Wednesday.

Giannis Antetokounmpo, the star of the Bucks and one of the organization’s most talented players to wear the uniform, set the franchise record in scoring, picking up 64 points to surpass the record previously held by Michael Redd at 57 points.

The effort came in a huge Bucks’ win, topping the Pacers 140-126.

The moment will be remembered as much for Antetokounmpo setting the record as much as the drama that ensued following his record-setting night, when he had to track down the game ball from the Pacers — and potentially might not have gotten it anyway.

Here’s what you need to know about Antetokounmpo’s new record, and how he reached that mark on Wednesday.

MORE: Why Giannis had to chase Pacers to get game ball back

Giannis Antetokounmpo stats vs. Pacers

The most notable part of Antetokounmpo’s stat line will, of course, be the points. That number was 64 by the end of the night. How he did it all, however, was remarkable.

He reached that point total without making a single 3-pointer, going 0-for-3 from the perimeter. That 64-point performance was the highest-scoring game in the 3-point era without making a 3, topping a four-way tie at 61 between two different Michael Jordan games, Karl Malone and Shaquille O’Neal, according to Stathead.

Antetokounmpo also spent a lot of his night at the charity stripe. He attempted 32 free throws and made 24 of them. Those 32 attempts were the sixth-most all-time, and his makes ranked tied for eighth.

His overall shot sheet was something to behold. He made all his shots in the paint and did not attempt many shots too far beyond the basket.

Giannis Antetokounmpo

It should come as little surprise that Antetokounmpo’s overall shooting percentage was high. He made 20-of-28 shots (71.4 percent). Per Stathead, his 64 points were the sixth-most points scored by a player in a game in which they shot at least 70 percent. He is one of just five players to top 60 points and shoot at least 70 percent from the field.

The rest of his stat line is impressive as well. He totaled 14 rebounds (11 defensive, three offensive) and added three assists, four steals and one block while taking only one personal foul during the game. He became the 14th player in league history to tally a game in which he had double-digit rebounds and at least 60 points, according to Stathead.

Giannis Antetokounmpo most points in a game

Antetokounmpo has spent his entire career with the Bucks, so it stands to reason that if he set Milwaukee’s single-game scoring record, he would have his own record.

Indeed, that was the case.

It was his first time topping 60 points, and the fifth time in the calendar year he has reached at least 50 points.

What was Giannis Antetokounmpo’s career high points?

Before Wednesday, Antetokounmpo’s career-high was 55 points, which he scored on Jan. 3, 2023, against the Wizards. It was the first time in 2023 he would reach at least 50 points.

On Jan. 29, he scored 50; on Feb. 2, he scored 54; and on Nov. 9, he dropped 54.

And there must be something about the Pacers that he relishes. In his career, he’s had eight games of at least 50 points. Three of them have come against Indiana. He has yet to repeat a 50-point performance against another team.

Date Opponent FG-FGA (FG%) Points
Dec. 13, 2023 Pacers 20-28 (71.4%) 64
Jan. 3, 2023 Wizards 20-33 (60.6%) 55
Feb. 2, 2023 Clippers 21-39 (53.8%) 54
Nov. 9, 2023 Pacers 19-25 (76.0%) 54
March 17, 2019 76ers 15-26 (57.7%) 52
Nov. 25, 2019 Jazz 17-31 (54.8%) 50
Feb. 15, 2022 Pacers 17-21 (81.0%) 50
Jan. 29, 2023 Pelicans 20-26 (76.9%) 50

Bucks single game scoring record

That honor now belongs to Antetokounmpo. He surpassed Redd’s record of 57, which Redd scored on Nov. 11, 2006, against the Jazz in a 113-111 loss.

The Bucks’ single-game scoring record list is littered with the two most prominent big men to play in the franchise’s history: Antetokounmpo and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. There have been 23 instances of a Bucks player scoring at least 50 points in a game. Abdul-Jabbar did it 10 times and Antetokounmpo has now done it eight times.

Redd reached at least 50 points twice. Brandon Jennings, Jrue Holiday and Khris Middleton have each done it once.

Here’s a look at the five highest-scoring games in Bucks’ history:

Player Date Opponent Points
Giannis Antetokounmpo Dec. 13, 2023 Pacers 64
Michael Redd Nov. 11, 2006 Jazz 57
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Dec. 10, 1971 Celtics 55
Brandon Jennings Nov. 14, 2009 Warriors 55
Giannis Antetokounmpo Jan. 3, 2023 Wizards 55

Most points scored in NBA game

As far as all-time, single-game scoring goes, Antetokounmpo’s game is still far off from the record, which feels nearly impossible to reach in the modern era.

That record is held by Wilt Chamberlain, who on March 2, 1962, scored 100 points. No one has come close to that mark, with Kobe Bryant’s 81-point game on Jan. 22, 2006, the next closest.

It’s not out of the question that Antetokounmpo could at some point reach 70 points in a single game — two players did it just last season — but it’s still a rare feat in the NBA.

Player Team Date Opponent Points
Wilt Chamberlain Warriors March 2, 1962 Knicks 100
Kobe Bryant Lakers Jan. 22, 2006 Raptors 81
Wilt Chamberlain Warriors Dec. 8, 1961 Lakers 78
Wilt Chamberlain Warriors Jan. 13, 1962 Packers 73
Wilt Chamberlain Warriors Nov. 16, 1962 Knicks 73
David Thompson Nuggets April 9,  1978 Pistons 73
Wilt Chamberlain Warriors Nov. 3, 1962 Lakers 72
Elgin Baylor Lakers Nov. 15, 1960 Knicks 71
David Robinson Spurs April 24, 1994 Clippers 71
Donovan Mitchell Cavaliers Jan. 2, 2023 Bulls 71
Damian Lillard Trail Blazers Feb. 26, 2023 Rockets 71
Wilt Chamberlain Warriors March 10, 1963 Nationals 70
Devin Booker Suns March 24, 2017 Celtics 70

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