Skip to main content

LeBron's fiercest competitors - Top 5 players with the highest scoring average when going up against LeBron James

Four guards and one forward. Here are the Top 5 players who scored at will when facing LeBron James.
Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James

LeBron James

When you’re about to face LeBron James, the game plan isn’t as simple as sending hoards of players at him. James is too good of a playmaker; he’ll immediately find the open man. And basketball isn’t just about defense. Opposing teams also have to worry about scoring against LeBron-led teams.

These realities make it seem impossible to win against one of the greatest players of all time. But there are a few players who, whenever they faced the King, laced their sneakers tight, wound up their shooting arm, and scored at will. These are the top five players with the highest scoring average against LeBron James-led teams in the regular season (minimum of 10 games, data collected from StateMuse).

5. Kobe Bryant (24.6 ppg, 22 games)

NBA fans were treated to one of the best eras in basketball when both prime Kobe and LeBron were going at it. There was even a craving for an NBA Finals featuring the Los Angeles Lakers and the Cleveland Cavaliers. And while the dream series never occurred, fans were still extremely entertained whenever the Black Mamba and the King dueled on the hardcourt. 

The two legends met 22 times. LeBron has a 16-6 record against Kobe’s Lakers which is quite surprising. Kobe has scored as much as 38 points against LeBron, while James has dropped as much as 41 points on the Black Mamba.

In those times they matched up against each other, Kobe showed off that no one could stop him in the post. James’ strength was no match for Kobe’s footwork and wit.

4. Dwyane Wade (25.4 ppg, 31 games)

Before and after they teamed up in South Beach, LeBron James and Dwyane Wade had a number of tough duels against each other. They played 31 games donning different jerseys with James besting Wade, 16-15. Their best duel came in the 2005-06 season where they combined for a ridiculous 91 points. James dropped 47 while Wade had 44.

Scroll to Continue

Recommended Articles

3. Allen Iverson, (25.8 ppg, 18 games)

Allen Iverson is one of the most explosive scorers in NBA history. So it’s only right that he always had a productive night when he played against LeBron James. Unlike Kobe and D-Wade, Iverson seldom matched up against James. Iverson and his coach were wise enough to avoid any switches.

AI had a young Andre Iguodala by his side to try to contain James. All Iverson had to worry about was how to break down Cavaliers’ guards like former teammate Eric Snow, Damon Jones, or Larry Hughes. This was a relatively easy task for The Answer.

2. Damian Lillard (28.1 ppg, 18 games)

Damian Lillard has earned the respect of fans as one of the superstars of this era who has stayed with his team. Lillard has been the subject of trade rumors almost every year. But the six-time All-Star has remained loyal to the team which drafted him.

Some poke fun at Lillard for his seeming disinterest in competing for a title. But his scoring average against LeBron — who usually helms one of the best teams in the league — proves that Lillard will do anything in his power to lead his team to victory.

1. Kevin Durant (28.5 ppg, 21 games)

Kevin Durant made the summer headlines after requesting a trade from the Brooklyn Nets. Once again, critics poked fun at Durant for shamelessly chasing a championship ring instead of patiently forming a contending squad.

Outside of this trade circus, Durant can be considered one of LeBron James’ fiercest rivals. They played a total of 35 games against each other (21 in the regular season and 14 in the playoffs). While James has a 20-15 lead, Durant’s two rings came at the expense of a LeBron beatdown.

Some say that without Durant, LeBron would’ve quickly ousted the Warriors and added two rings to his resume. But there’s simply no stopping Durant. James is a pretty good defender himself but who can really contest a seven-footer with a deadly stroke from everywhere?

os Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James and Richard Jefferson

“LeBron has not done enough as a Laker to be a Laker great” — why Richard Jefferson is right about LeBron James' legacy as a Laker (so far)

Adding another title to his trophy case was certainly nice, but Jefferson is right in saying that James has some more work to do if he wants to fully establish himself as a Laker great

Kevin Durant gets into it with Twitter users who claim he tainted his legacy and destroyed the NBA

Kevin Durant gets into it with Twitter users who claim he tainted his legacy and destroyed the NBA

Durant decided to take aim at users who believe that he has ruined the NBA with his team-hopping, and that his team-hopping tendancies have ruined his legacy

Kaith Van Horn

“I think he was pretty satisfied with what he had” – Keith Van Horn could have been a great player but chose not to become one

Based on Byron Scott’s description, Keith had what it takes and he often “worked hard” during team practices and gym workouts. However, he “never went the extra mile.”

American actor Ben Stiller

“I’ll be in my mid-60s by the time this team rebuilds” - Ben Stiller on being a New York Knicks fan

Stiller summed up the experience of being a Knicks fan: “Who would want this pain? Who would want to feel that frustration?”

Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James and Chicago Bulls guard Michael Jordan

The difference between Michael Jordan's and LeBron James' diet and workout regime

Michael Jordan and LeBron James' diets are similar to each other but the way they recover and workout is different.

Boston Celtics forward Larry Bird

"Score meant very little, but a lot of talking going on, a lot of fun." - Larry Bird learned trash-talking from black men working at a local hotel

In the process, Bird developed a genuine off-the-court relationship with most of them, particularly a guy whom he called “Slim.”