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5 Youngest Players To Score 40+ Points in the NBA Playoffs

The National Basketball Association (NBA) features nothing less than the world’s most skilled and dominant basketball players. They must be able to out-hoop most other players, which is something many budding basketball pros don't understand when trying to make their way to the big leagues.

But even among the most well-known players, several names stand out for all the right reasons. Some for their persistent dominance on the court, and others for possessing incredible record-breaking skill sets at a young age.

Whether you are wanting to learn more about NBA betting odds or want to discover which players excelled the most early on in their career, this article will tell you all you need to know.

Magic Johnson
Age: 20 years, 276 days
Date: 5/16/1980

Of all the all-time great basketball players, there's nobody quite like Magic Johnson. So it may come as no surprise to find out he was the first-and youngest-basketball player to score 40+ points in an NBA playoffs game.

His phenomenal performance occurred in a game against the Philadelphia 76ers. It should be noted that Johnson usually played point guard but took on the responsibility of playing center during this game to provide cover for Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

Johnson ended the night with impressive statistics including 15 rebounds, 42 points, and seven assists on a 60.9% field goal shooting.

He was awarded for his efforts and was named the Most Valuable Player of the Finals during this particular NBA Playoffs series.

LeBron James
Age: 21 years, 119 days old
Date: 4/28/2006

LeBron James is the first player in NBA Playoffs history to have recorded multiple 40-point playoff games while being under the age of 21.

His first 40+ point playoff game came against the Washington Wizards in Game 3 of their first-round series during the 2006 NBA Playoffs. In this game, he scored 41 points on 57.1 % field goal shooting.

His second 40+ point playoff game also came against the Washington Wizards in the same series. This occurred during Game 5.

During this game, LeBron James scored 45 points and also subsequently broke the record for scoring the most points in the NBA playoffs by a player 21 and under. After this game, the Cavaliers took a 3-2 lead. They then went on to clinch the series, winning 4-2.

Luka Doncic
Age: 21 years, 171 days old
Date: 8/17/2020

Doncic is the second player after the legendary LeBron James to have achieved two separate 40-point games in the playoffs while aged 21 or under. He tallied 41 points against the LA Clippers during the first-round series of the 2020 Playoffs. He achieved lots of success and had nine rebounds, seven assists, and shot 61% from the field.

But it was his second 40-point game in the same series that helped him to achieve his status. During this historic NBA performance, he had a tally of 43 points, 13 rebounds, and 17 assists. He also shot 0% from the three-point line and 58.1% from the field. Currently, Doncic has the most 40 point playoff games (six) by a player aged 23 and under.

Ja Morant
Age: 21 years, 289 days old
Date:5/26/2021

NBA fans often discourage themselves from believing a younger player can reach or match the skill level of an NBA great. This is because it's usually a pretty impossible thing to achieve, especially for individuals only playing professionally for a couple of years. But not for recent Ja Morant.

Ja Morant is another incredible young basketball player who has made history books after achieving a 40-point game during an NBA Playoffs match. In fact, he has gone on to make NBA history after dropping a record-breaking 47 points on Utah Jazz!

Morant now has the highest points tally seen in a playoff game for a player under the age of 21. Morant has played terrifically in his career so far, and it won't be a surprise if he manages to score multiple 40-point games while still in his early twenties.

Tracy McGrady
Age: 21 years, 339 days old
Date: 4/28/2001

Tracy McGrady was one of the toughest covers in league history. He also collected his fair share of impressive accolades throughout his career, but none more so than being one of the youngest ever players to achieve a 40+ NBA playoff game.

In 2001, when he was only a month away from turning 22, McGrady played an excellent playoff game against the Milwaukee Bucks. McGrady notched 42 points, 10 rebounds, and eight assists during this game, which really put McGrady on the map.

They desperately needed a win when a young McGrady stepped up to the plate and decided to take matters into his own hands. He managed to lead his team to a 121-116 win. However, the Bucks rose up to win Game 4 and eventually claimed the series.

Summary

The NBA has a reputation for producing the most interesting and record-breaking basketball games in the world. The same goes for its incredibly skilled players. As a result, certain professionals exceed far beyond anyone’s expectations very early in their career, which is a trend likely to continue as the league progresses.