Does LeBron James Have The Clutch Gene?

LeBron James is Clutch

We all have heard Skip Bayless say LeBron James is not a clutch player, even his haters have said this. Even a large number of non-hating NBA fans have this perception of LeBron. But what do the numbers say? Before diving into this, we must first set some foundation for determining the clutch standard. Having the clutch gene does not only mean you simply make shots at the end of the game, it also means you play big in do or die games and come through with plays that impact the game. Now there are also levels of clutchness, I believe some players are more clutch than others.

With that said, lets look at some stats.

Most Points Per Game in the 4th Quarter since 2002-03
  1. Kobe Bryant - 7.4
  2. LeBron James - 7.0
  3. Kevin Durant - 6.6
  4. Dwayne Wade - 6.3
  5. Kyrie Irving - 6.2
  6. Allen Iverson -  6.2
  7. Damian Lillard - 6.2

Highest PER in the 4th Quarter/overtime
  • 2016-17   Isaiah Thomas  41.9
  • 2008-09   LeBron James  40.0
  • 2009-10   LeBron James  39.8
  • 2016-17   Russell Westbrook  39.4

Number of game winning shots at the buzzer as of January 2017. (ESPN)
  • LeBron James - 3
  • Michael Jordan - 3

Most Go-Ahead Makes In Final Second of 4th Quarter/OT Last 15 Postseasons (ESPN)
  • LeBron James - 4 (3 at buzzer)
  • Manu Ginobli - 3

LeBron now has more postseason go-ahead/game-tying FGM in final 24 sec of Q4/OT than Kobe (8 to 7). And much more efficient (19 FGA vs 28).

As you can see from the numbers above LeBron James has been clutch. So why do people have the misconception that he is not? Well the answer lies in the meltdown he had in the Heat Dallas Finals series where he did not show up. Because of the press, TV shows and bragging about winning 10 rings etc. all eyes were on him that first finals as a Heat and he did not show up. From there many decided he was not clutch. However, we know that he had clutch plays before going to the Heat and after losing in the finals he would come back even better. Although after beating the Warriors and coming back from a 3-1 deficit in the 2016 finals I believe this misconception is going away.

Videos of LeBron James Game Winners

As a member of the Heat his step back 3 pointer to win the game against the Warriors

 Game winner against the Bulls in the playoffs

Game winner against the Magic in the conference finals

Not a game winner but clutch all game in an elimination game at the Celtics home court in the eastern conference finals.
Does LeBron James Have The Clutch Gene? Does LeBron James Have The Clutch Gene? Reviewed by Basketball Breakdowns on 2:01 AM Rating: 5

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