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NBA History: Utah Jazz Karl Malone 's best games against every team

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It's his birthday, but he game every team in the NBA some presents they didn't want.

Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sport

Today is Karl Malone's birthday, and the Utah Jazz power forward's work on the court is indisputable, and his greatness as an individual player nearly unrivaled by any other bigman. (So, when you take the "rings" argument out of it, he's one of the best All-Time)

To celebrate his work on the court I looked up his best game against every team he played again. And well, this isn't just his best scoring games (I've left out plenty of 40 and 50 point games here), but the games where he just dominated the other team -- no matter who they defended him with.

Team M D Y Age Mins PTS REB AST STL BLK BARPS /min Defended By
1 WAS 2 20 1987 23.58 38 36 15 1 2 0 54 1.42 Terry Catledge, Moses Malone
2 DET 1 20 1988 24.49 43 39 13 3 4 0 59 1.37 Rick Mahorn, Bill Laimbeer, Dennis Rodman
3 POR 2 4 1988 24.53 43 41 19 7 0 1 68 1.58 Caldwell Jones, Maurice Lucas, Jerome Kersey
4 SAC 2 29 1988 24.60 41 41 15 3 0 2 61 1.49 Otis Thorpe, Joe Kleine
5 SAS 3 19 1988 24.65 44 34 20 5 3 0 62 1.41 Cadillac Anderson
6 PHI 12 17 1988 25.40 41 44 13 1 3 2 63 1.54 Charles Barkley
7 CLE 12 11 1989 26.38 46 32 17 3 2 1 55 1.20 Larry Nance, Hot Rod Williams
8 BOS 12 20 1989 26.41 40 39 12 3 2 0 56 1.40 Kevin McHale, Larry Bird, Robert Parish
9 CHA/NOR 12 22 1989 26.41 43 52 17 3 2 0 74 1.72 Armen Gilliam, J.R. Reid
10 DEN 1 6 1990 26.45 47 48 14 3 2 1 68 1.45 Blair Rasmussen
11 MIL 1 27 1990 26.51 33 61 18 2 3 0 84 2.55 Fred Roberts, Jack Sikma
12 LAL 4 12 1990 26.72 44 45 11 1 1 1 59 1.34 A.C. Green, Vlade Divac
13 DAL 4 17 1990 26.73 40 39 17 3 1 1 61 1.53 Sam Perkins, Roy Tarpley, Herb Williams
14 MIA 1 2 1991 27.44 44 40 13 1 2 0 56 1.27 Grant Long
15 NYK 3 9 1991 27.62 44 34 18 1 1 3 57 1.30 Charles Oakley, Patrick Ewing
16 ATL 1 16 1992 28.48 40 37 14 3 2 1 57 1.43 Kevin Willis, Alexander Volkov
17 PHX 1 31 1992 28.52 45 43 16 1 1 0 61 1.36 Tom Chambers, Andrew Lang
18 HOU 4 19 1995 31.74 45 45 17 5 1 1 69 1.53 Hakeem Olajuwon, Robert Horry, Chucky Brown
19 TOR 2 27 1997 33.60 41 32 13 10 3 1 59 1.44 Marcus Camby, Oliver Miller, Popeye Jones
20 IND 3 14 1997 33.64 36 38 11 3 0 0 52 1.44 Dale Davis, Antonio Davis, Rik Smits
21 LAC 11 29 1997 34.35 41 42 18 0 2 2 64 1.56
22 GSW 4 7 1998 34.70 42 56 9 2 1 4 72 1.71 Erick Dampier, Donyell Marshall, Clarence Weatherspoon
23 MIN 4 14 1988 34.72 36 44 14 6 0 2 66 1.83 Kevin Garnett, Cherokee Parks
24 CHI 6 12 1998 34.88 44 39 9 5 1 1 55 1.25 Dennis Rodman, Luc Longley, Toni Kukoc
25 VAN/MEM 1 20 2000 36.49 32 32 12 5 2 1 52 1.63 Shareef Abdur-Rahim, Bryant Reeves
26 NJN/BKN 2 28 2000 36.60 44 35 12 9 0 2 58 1.32 Keith Van Horn, Jim McIlvaine
27 SEA/OKC 4 22 2000 36.75 43 50 12 0 3 1 66 1.53 Horace Grant, Vin Baker
28 ORL 2 12 2003 39.63 42 40 9 7 4 0 60 1.43 Drew Gooden, Shawn Kemp
29 UTA 3 28 2004 40.68 35 19 13 1 2 1 36 1.03 Tom Gugliotta, Jarron Collins

Yeah, Karl Malone is nearly peerless. For his career Karl has

  • 938 double doubles,
  • I think he has the oldest aged triple double in NBA history (age 40),
  • has 1,288 20-point games,
  • 489 30-point games, 
  • 48 40-point games,
  • 15 20-20 games,
  • 5 50-point games,
  • and 1 60-point game

And while the Utah Jazz are celebrating his birthday the most, every other team in the league is as well -- glad that he's now in his 50s and no longer in his playing days.