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Denver Nuggets Career Point Scoring Leaders
This is the first hub for the NBA that we have to add a footnote to, and that’s because the Denver Nuggets were one of the ABA franchises that merged into the NBA in the mid-70’s. Since the record books count the ABA stats as part of each franchise’s official stats, we’ll count them here too. The Nuggets began play as the Denver Rockets in 1968, and became the Nuggets in 1975. The merger into the NBA took hold in 1977, and while the franchise has been to the playoffs a total of 29 times, they have not yet won a title. Here is a short list of the Nuggets’ all-time leading scorers to date:
Alex English (21,645)—Forward Alex English played most of his career in Denver, from 1979 to 1990, and he ranks first in Nuggets’ history with 21,645 points scored in their uniform. English scored 2000 or more points eight times with them, and led the NBA in scoring twice as a Nuggets player. One of those was his best overall season, 1985-86, when English scored a career high 2414 points (30 points per game).
Dan Issel (16,589)—Center/forward Dan Issel began his career with the Kentucky Colonels in the ABA, and played with Denver from 1975 to 1985, including that first year with the ABA version of the team. Issel ranks second in franchise history with 16,589 total points, and his best season with the team was 1979-80. That year, Issel scored 1951 points (24 per game).
David Thompson (11,992)—Guard/forward David Thompson played for the Nuggets most of his career, from 1975 to 1982, and he ranks third in the team’s history with 11,992 total points. Thompson scored over 2000 points three times, and his best season was 1977-78, when he racked up a career best 2172 points (27 per game).
Carmelo Anthony (11,898)—Forward Carmelo Anthony came into the league the same season as LeBron James, and has become one of the game’s bright young stars. Anthony has been in the NBA since 2003 and already ranks fourth in Nuggets’ history with 11,898 points as I write this in 2010. Anthony’s best season so far was 2005-06, when he scored a career high 2122 points (27 points per game).
Ralph Simpson (10,130)—Guard/forward Ralph Simpson played in Denver from 1970 to 1976 and again briefly in 1977-78. Simpson ranks fifth in franchise history with 10,130 points, and he had his best season with the Denver Rockets in 1971-72. That year, Simpson scored a career high 2300 points (27 per game).