NBA

Top 5: NBA scorers so far this season

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In any sport, everybody loves a goalscorer, a great shooter, a home-run hitter, a match-winner.

Whether it's football and Leo Messi or basketball and LeBron James, fans come to watch the game-winners, the players who make things happen.

In the NBA, it's the scorers who attract the headlines. Stephen Curry, a guard for Golden State Warriors, dropped 54 points at Madison Square Garden earlier this month. His team lost, but he stole the show.

People love to watch buckets - there's something calm, almost soothing about a great jump shot. And here, we take a look at the NBA's current best shooters.

Four of the five are bona-fide superstars, arguably the four biggest players in a sport where franchises on average are worth over half a billion dollars.

The other is a great pure shooter, but even discounting ropey defence he still commanded an $80m five-year contract last year. These guys earn the biggest contracts, and that's only right - after all, they're the sport's biggest stars.

Let's count down the top 5…  

Kevin Durant | Oklahoma City Thunder | 28.3 points per game

The Oklahoma City Thunder are one of the most exciting teams to watch in the league, and Durant is largely responsible.

He's freakishly talented, with an odd rangy style that accentuates his silky smooth shooting technique.

One of the few players possibly capable of stealing LeBron's MVP crown in the coming years, Durant helped the Thunder to the NBA Finals last season, only for the Heat to burn them up in five.

Currently he leads the league in shooting, but what's more impressive is his efficiency. He's currently on a 50-40-90 season - that's 90 percent free throw shooting, 50 percent field goal percentage and 40 percent from three-point land. 

Only five players in NBA history have finished a season with these numbers, earning a place in the 50-40-90 club.

Carmelo Anthony | New York Knicks | 27.5 points per game

The face of the franchise in the biggest market in the United States. At college in Syracuse, New York, Anthony was a pure scorer, and he's become one of the NBA's best.

Injury has scuppered the Knicks' form in the recent weeks, including last weekend's blowout loss to the LA Clippers.

But the forward never shies away from taking on the big shots, and he'll be key to the Knicks' hopes of progressing past the first round in the play-offs.

Kobe Bryant | LA Lakers | 27.1 points per game

A 'dirty' foul has kept Bryant out recently, but he was the force behind the LA Lakers' recent playoff surge.

The five-time NBA champion is a master of the off-balance shot. In fact, he makes the impossible look easy.

A tetchy relationship with Dwight Howard looks to have been put aside, and the LA Lakers look to be marching towards a 6th or 7th seed in the Western Conference. That's good news - it's always fun to watch the two-time scoring champion in action.

LeBron James | Miami Heat | 26.5 points per game

'King James' is a phenomenon. The 'forward' can play four of the five positions on the court, is a fixture in the top ten when it comes to double doubles and as a three-time MVP, is looking to wrap up a second NBA championship.

The Miami Heat, currently on a record-breaking 22-game unbeaten run, have a stacked roster with Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh, Ray Allen and Shane Battier, but still they rely on LeBron.

In February he'd averaged a ridiculous 64 percent from the field. And, with LeBron in this kind of dominant form, few would bet against a second straight NBA championship.

James Harden | Houston Rockets | 26.3 points per game

The former-Oklahoma City Thunder guard was traded to the Houston Rockets last November, and he's carried on his incredible scoring form.

For the Thunder he was a hugely influential 'sixth man', coming off the bench, often to blow the opposition away.

With the Rockets, he's a starter. His scoring hasn't stopped but question marks remain over his defence. But getting players who put put the ball in the hoop doesn't come cheap, and Harden got a five-year $80m contract from the Rockets for his services.

All stats courtesy of ESPN.com.

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