True Shooting percentage (TS%) is a statistic to measure a player’s efficiency to shoot the ball. It calculates more accurately the shooting percentage of a player rather than individually calculating the field goal percentage, three point percentage, and the free throw percentage.
How to Calculate
For basketball analyst newbies, here’s the formula to calculate the TS%:
The Top 10
Did any of the current superstars like LeBron James, Kevin Durant and Stephen Curry make the cut? Let’s take a look at the 10 players who have the highest true shooting percentage in NBA history as of 2017:
10. Kevin Durant
TS% = 60.82%
Kevin Durant is arguably one of the best players still playing in the NBA right now. Listed at 6’9’’, he is also considered to be one of the best pure shooters in the game. He was selected as the first pick during the 2013 NBA Draft. He is a one-time MVP (2014), a former Rookie of the Year (2008), an eight-time All Star, a five-time All-NBA First Team, a one-time All-NBA Second Team, and a two-time Scoring Champion. He played for nine years in Oklahoma City Thunder, reaching as far as the finals before transferring to his current team, the Golden State Warriors.
9. Magic Johnson
TS% = 60.95%
Earvin “Magic” Johnson is widely considered to be the best point guard the game has ever seen. Listed at 6’9’’, he is also the tallest point guard in NBA history. He was selected the first overall pick during the 1979 NBA Draft by the Los Angeles Lakers. He is a five-time Champion, a three-time Finals MVP, a three-time Season MVP, a 12-time All-Star, nine-time All-NBA First Team, and a one-time All-NBA Second Team. During his run with the Lakers, he led the team in assists, steals and free-throw percentage. He brought his team to a staggering nine-time NBA Finals Appearance and won five. He played for 12 years for the Lakers before being forced to retire in 1992 after he was diagnosed with HIV.
Johnson returned during the 1996 season and played for 32 games before retiring for good. His jersey number (#32) was retired by the Lakers. Johnson was inaugurated in the Basketball Hall of Fame last 2010 along with his rival Larry Bird and other members of the 1992 USA Dream Team.
8. Charles Barkley
TS% = 61.20%
Charles Barkley, also known as “Chuck” and “Sir Charles,” is arguably one of the most dominating power forwards during the Michael Jordan era. He was selected as fifth overall pick by his first team, the Philadelphia 76ers. Despite being short for his position (listed at 6’6’’) and involved in a lot of controversies due to his attitude, he thrived and made noise in the four-spot. He appeared at the NBA Finals one time, along with his second team Phoenix Suns, but lost to the Chicago Bulls. He is a one-time MVP, an 11-time All-Star, a five-time All-NBA First Team, a five-time All-NBA Second Team, and a one-time All-NBA Third Team. His jersey number (#34) was retired by his two teams, the Phoenix Suns and the Philadelphia 76ers. Barkley was also included during the inauguration of the 1992 Dream Team last 2010.
7. Reggie Miller
TS% = 61.39%
Reggie Miller, who was selected 11th overall during the 1987 NBA Draft, was known to be the best three-point shooter during his time. He retired holding the most number of three-point field goals made in history before Ray Allen broke his record last 2013. A basketball hall of famer, he is a five-time All-Star and a three-time All-NBA Third Team. His jersey number (#31) was retired by his sole team for his whole career, the Indiana Pacers.
6. Stephen Curry
TS% = 61.64%
Wardell Stephen Curry II, simply known as Stephen Curry, is arguably the best shooter the game has ever seen. He continuously break his own record for the most three point field goals made in a season for the last three years. He was also the only player in NBA history who unanimously won the MVP award. Curry was selected the seventh overall pick during the 2009 NBA Draft. He is a one-time NBA Champion (2015), a two-time MVP, a four-time All-Star, a two-time All-NBA First Team, a one-time All-NBA Second Team, and a one-time Scoring Champion. He, along with his team the Golden State Warriors, appeared for the last two NBA Finals. They won the first time after beating LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers, breaking the 41-year drought. On their second appearance though, they lost to the same team after seven games.
5. Adrian Dantley
TS% = 61.66%
Adrian Dantley was a known prolific scorer during his time. He was selected sixth overall during the 1976 NBA Draft. He was a journeyman after his campaign as Rookie of the Year with the Buffalo Bills before settling with the Utah Jazz. During his time with the Jazz, he peaked and established his reputation as a prolific scorer, leading the NBA in scoring for two different years. He is also a six-time NBA All-Star, and a two-time All-NBA Second Team. His jersey number (#4) was retired by the Jazz. Dantley was inaugurated at the Basketball Hall of Fame last 2008.
4. James Donaldson
TS% = 61.77%
James Donaldson played the center position (listed at 7’2”) for 14 years. He was drafted 73rd overall during the 1979 NBA Draft by the Seattle Supersonics. But, he decided to sign and play overseas before playing in the NBA the following year. He was a journeyman who played for five different teams in his 14-year NBA career. Despite not being known as a prolific scorer, he was extremely efficient in shooting the ball. He still holds a record for the top ten highest field goal percentage in a season in NBA history at an efficient 63.7%. He is a one-time All-Star. He retired not attempting a single three-point field goal.
3. Tyson Chandler
TS% = 62.43%
Tyson Chandler was known to be the defensive anchor on any team he plays in. He was selected second overall during the 2001 NBA Draft by the Los Angeles Clippers before being immediately traded to Chicago Bulls. He played for six different teams, currently as a backup center for the Phoenix Suns. Even though he is known for being a defense-first player, he is extremely efficient on offense. But due to foul problems, his playing time is always limited. He is a one-time Champion, a one-time All-star, a one-time Defensive Player of the Year, a one-time All-NBA Third Team, a one-time All-Defensive First Team, and a two-time All-Defensive Second Team.
2. Cedric Maxwell
TS% = 62.94%
Cedric Maxwell was known to be a dangerous scorer and clutch shooter during his time. He was drafted at 12th overall during the 1978 NBA Draft as a small forward before being moved to the power forward position during the arrival of Larry Bird the following year. He peaked in his second year with the Celtics after an abysmal rookie year and became one of the leading scorers of the team. Maxwell was known for his efficient moves and scoring on the post. He also rarely attempted a mid-range shot because his team had a lot of reliable outside shooters. He had two championships with the Celtics where he played a key role, and a one-time Finals MVP. His jersey number (#31) was retired by the team. Maxwell also played for the Los Angeles Clippers and the Houston Rockets, where he retired after an 11-year NBA career.
1. Artis Gilmore
TS% = 64.33%
Known as the “A-Train,” Artis Gilmore is famous for being a double-double machine on a nightly basis and still holds the record in the NBA for the highest career field goal percentage at 59.9%. Standing at 7’2’’ and playing the center position, he dominated the American Basketball Association before being selected first overall during the 1976 NBA Dispersal Draft by the Chicago Bulls after the ABA has disbanded. He is a six-time All-Star, and a one-time All-Defensive Second Team. He played for the Chicago Bulls, San Antonio Spurs and the Boston Celtics, where he retired after playing for 11 years in the NBA.
A player with a high true shooting percentage doesn’t necessarily mean that he is the greatest in the NBA. There are still so many factors to consider and not all of them are based on numbers.