Jimmy Butler was a one-man wrecking ball in the Bulls' 118-111 victory over the Hornets on Monday. The Bulls' All-Star tallied 52 points - one off his career-high - on 15-for-24 shooting, and he made 21 of 22 free throws to cap off the historic night.
But it wasn't just a record-setting night for Butler, who became the second player in Bulls history with multiple 50-point games (guess who the other is?).
Butler's scoring clinic on Monday marked the eighth time this season an NBA player has scored 50 or more points in a single game. The calendar has just flipped and there's still four months left in the regular season, and yet that's tied for the most 50-point games in any NBA season. Eight players reached the half-century mark in both 1990 and 2016.
Here's a list of the 50-point games this season, including three which have occurred in the last four days:
- Anthony Davis, Oct. 26: 50 points, 17-for-34 FG, 0-for-2 3FG, 16-for-17 FT
- Russell Westbrook, Oct. 28: 51 points, 17-for-44 FG, 2-for-10 3FG, 15-for-20 FT
- Klay Thompson, Dec. 5: 60 points, 21-for-33 FG, 8-for-14 3FG, 10-for-11 FT
- John Wall, Dec. 6: 52 points, 18-for-21 FG, 5-for-8 3FG, 11-for-14 FT
- DeMarcus Cousins, Dec. 20: 55 points, 17-for-28 FG, 5-for-8 3FG, 16-for-17 FT
- Isaiah Thomas, Dec. 30: 52 points, 15-for-26 FG, 9-for-13 3FG, 13-for-13 FT
- James Harden, Dec. 31: 53 points, 14-for-26 FG, 9-for-16 3FG, 16-for-18 FT
- Jimmy Butler, Jan. 2: 52 points, 15-for-24 FG, 1-for-4 3FG, 21-for-22 FT
Butler needed the third fewest minutes of the eight to record his 50-point game (Klay Thompson's 60-point game coming in 29 minutes is mind-boggling), did so on the fewest number of field-goal attempts. His 63 percent shooting from the field was the second highest mark on the list (behind Thompson's 64 percent) and his 21 free-throw makes were easily the highest of the bunch. For what it's worth, basketball-reference lists Butler's game score of 51.5 as the highest of any 50-point scorers'.