Game 7 history: NBA Playoff records, stats, best performances and more to know after Jayson Tatum's outburst
The superstars have been showing up for Game 7s this year.
The Warriors and Kings met in the first Game 7 of the 2023 NBA Playoffs, and Stephen Curry delivered a 50-point performance in a 120-100 win. Only two weeks later, Jayson Tatum led the Celtics to a Game 7 victory over the 76ers, racking up 51 points on 17-of-28 shooting.
Let's take a look back at the history of Game 7s in the NBA Playoffs and some of the league's best Game 7 performances, including Tatum's recent scoring explosion.
(All stats courtesy of StatMuse)
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How many Game 7s have been played in NBA Playoff history?
After the matchup between the Celtics and 76ers, there have now been 147 Game 7s in NBA Playoff history.
Before this year's postseason, the most recent Game 7 was played between the Celtics and Heat in the 2022 Eastern Conference Finals. Boston escaped Miami with a 100-96 win and advanced to the NBA Finals.
Which NBA teams have played in the most Game 7s?
The Celtics have played in 36 Game 7s and won 27 of them. The Lakers are second on the all-time list with 24 Game 7s. They have a record of 16-8 in those games.
Boston and Los Angeles may have the most total Game 7 wins, but a surprising team has the highest winning percentage: the Timberwolves. Minnesota is the only franchise that has played in just one Game 7, defeating Sacramento in the 2004 Western Conference Semifinals.
Every active NBA team has played in at least one Game 7.
Which NBA players have played in the most Game 7s?
Hall of Famer Ray Allen played in 11 Game 7s, the most in NBA history.
Two Celtics legends are right behind him, as Paul Pierce and Bill Russell each played in 10 Game 7s.
Which NBA players have scored the most points in a Game 7?
No need to dig deep into the history books. Tatum broke Curry's Game 7 scoring record this year.
Kevin Durant is third on the all-time list. He had 48 points in an overtime loss to the Bucks in 2021.
How many Game 7s have been played in the NBA Finals?
The NBA Finals has required a Game 7 to decide the winner 19 times.
The most recent Game 7 of the championship series was played between the Cavaliers and Warriors in 2016. Cleveland captured a 93-89 victory, becoming the first team in NBA Finals history to win the title after facing a 3-1 deficit.