Ranking the Best Six-Game Stretches in Recent NBA History

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Ranking the Best Six-Game Stretches in Recent NBA History
Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

LeBron James is on a tear that no one in the NBA has ever been on before, prompting the question, is he on the greatest stretch in history?

James is the first player to ever score 30 points and shoot over .600 in six straight games. Does that make it the greatest stretch?

Part of the problem is how do you define what makes a great streak? Is a .600-shooting, 30-point streak the only way you can define greatness? Why not .550 and 25? Or why not 30 points and 10 rebounds? 

Using Basketball-Reference's streak finder, I found some of the most remarkable streaks since 1985-86, which is as far back as they go. 

It's crucial here to understand that there is a limitation in terms of actually knowing what individual box scores are. Without that information, it's impossible to consider the streaks which preceded the 1985-86 season. 

While Wilt Chamberlain and Oscar Robertson would doubtless make appearances on this list if we had the data, without the data it's not realistically workable to include them.

Even players like Magic Johnson and Larry Bird fail to make the list, in large part because their primes precede the data. 

This is not a "modern" bias so much as a "data" bias. Only the period the data could be accounted for is included. Just the same as the fact that Oscar Robertson's steals or Wilt Chamberlains blocks aren't factored into the all-time statistics. 

The stretches are ranked based on a combination of game impact and historical rarity. 

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