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Top 5 Lowest Scoring NBA Games

Al Brightman

Credit: Peach Basket Society

In the 1999 NBA season, the number of points scored per game by a team was 91.6. In the 2021 NBA season, that number has increased to 112.1, a twenty-point increase!

However, even 91.6 points is A LOT compared to the average number of points a team scored per game back in the 1940s. In the 47 NBA season, the average number of points was ONLY 67.6.

Although this is titled "Top 5 Lowest Scoring NBA Games," we're really looking back at the NBA during the 40s-50s as ALL FIVE of the lowest-scoring NBA games were during that time.

If you're only interested in THE lowest-scoring NBA game of all time, the lowest-scoring game in NBA history was during the 1950-51 NBA season in a match between the Fort Wayne Pistons and the Minneapolis Lakers. The Pistons would only score 19, and the Lakers would only score 18.

Table of Contents:

  1. Boston Celtics vs. Pittsburgh Ironmen (46-44)

  2. Washington Capitols vs. Pittsburgh Ironmen (49-40)

  3. Boston Celtics vs. Washington Capitols (47-38)

  4. Washington Capitols vs. Detroit Falcons (50-33)

  5. Fort Wayne Pistons vs. Minneapolis Lakers (19-18)

Boston Celtics vs. Pittsburgh Ironmen (46-44)

The NBA didn't even exist when this game took place. In fact, all these games, except for the game between the Pistons and Lakers, happened when the NBA was known as the Basketball Association of America. In addition, all these games besides the game between the Pistons and Lakers were during the 1946-47 BAA season.

Since this was during the beginnings of professional basketball, the only stats that were recorded were points, field goals, free throws, free throw attempts, and free throw percentage.

For some reason, other stats like assists and field goal percentage appear on players' season/career stat-lines, but not for individual games.


BAA did not include minutes played, field goal attempts, field goal percentages, rebounds, assists, steals, blocks, turnovers, or fouls back in the 1946-47 BAA season.