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On This Day (Dec. 25)
Notable events from NBA history that occurred on December 25.
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Klay Thompson’s Debut
On this day in 2011, Klay Thompson made his NBA debut with the Golden State Warriors, scoring seven points in a loss to the Los Angeles Clippers. Appropriately enough, his first career points came on a 3-pointer with 1:58 remaining in the third quarter.
Thompson holds the NBA records for most points scored in a quarter (37), most 3-pointers made in a game (14), most 3-pointers made in a half (10, tied), and most 3-pointers made in a quarter (9). He also shares the NBA record for most 3-pointers made in a postseason with fellow Splash Brother Stephen Curry (98, 2016).
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Career High for King
On this day in 1984, the New York Knicks’ Bernard King scored a career-high 60 points in a loss to the New Jersey Nets. King became the first player in franchise history to record a 60-point game, and he’s still the only player in NBA history to record a 60-point game on Christmas Day.
King shot 19-30 from the field (63.3%) and 22-26 from the free throw line (84.6%). King tied the franchise single-game records for free throws made and attempted, marks he still shares today.
Multiple Firsts for Big O
On this day in 1960, the Cincinnati Royals’ Oscar Robertson tallied 32 points, 15 rebounds, and 16 assists in a 126-119 win over the Detroit Pistons. Robertson became the first player in NBA history to record at least 30 points, 15 rebounds, and 15 assists in a game. He also became the first player in NBA history to record a triple-double on Christmas Day.
For his career, Robertson recorded four triple-doubles on Christmas Day. The only other player in NBA history to record more than one triple-double on the holiday is Russell Westbrook, who did so twice.
Rare Feat for Tiny
On this day in 1975, the Kansas City Kings’ Nate “Tiny” Archibald produced 39 points, 16 assists, and five steals in a loss to the Phoenix Suns. Since the NBA began tracking steals in 1973-74, Archibald is one of only five players to record at least 35 points, 15 assists, and five steals in a game:
Nate Archibald (Dec. 25, 1975)
John Lucas (Nov. 21, 1978)
Tim Hardaway (Nov. 12, 1992)
Gary Payton (March 31, 2000)
Chris Paul (Oct. 31, 2013)
On this day in 1970, the Los Angeles Lakers’ Wilt Chamberlain scored 24 points and grabbed 22 rebounds in a 123-113 victory over the Boston Celtics. Chamberlain became the second player in NBA history to reach 20,000 career rebounds, joining former Celtics great Bill Russell.
Chamberlain finished his career with 23,924 rebounds, the most in NBA history. He and Russell are still the only players in NBA history to record at least 20,000 boards.