NBA Players

Best Free Throw Shooters Of All Time

By Kapil Sapkota / 17 July 2023 10:19 AM

Image: Canyon Barry during a free throw shot
Source : npr

The best free throw shooters of all time are Lebron James, Stephen Curry, and Steve Nash. Mark Price and Tim Duncan also share the same list.

The unopposed shots to score points by shooting from behind the free-throw line at the end of the restricted area are free throws. Free throws are generally provided after the opposing team makes a foul on the shooter.

The shooting team will make a point after a successful free throw shot.

The best free-throw shooters are evaluated on the basis of their successful shots. Consistency, concentration, and confidence are what make a player a great shooter.

Best free throw shooters in NBA history

Lebron James is the best free-throw shooter in NBA history with 8023 points making 2872 field goals. Shaquille O'Neal is following him with 5250 points with 2041 field goals. Tim Duncan ranks 3rd in the list with 5172 points and 1975 field goals.

Lebron James

Image: Lebron James
Source : latimes

American professional basketball player, Lebron was born in 1984. The athlete belongs to the Los Angeles Lakers of the NBA. The fans often compare him to Michael Jordan in debates over the greatest basketball player of all time.

James is the most scoring athlete in NBA history. He ranks 4th in career assists. He is a four-time NBA Champion. 

Shaquille O'Neal

Image: Shaquille O'Neal
Source : facebook

The former professional basketball player Shaquille Rashaun O'Neal was born in 1972 in the USA. He played for the Boston Celtics in the 2010-11 season before his retirement. Currently, he works as a sports analyst on the TV program Inside the NBA. 

The four-time NBA Champion is regarded as one of the greatest basketball players of all time. He played for six teams during his 19-year career in the NBA.

Tim Duncan

Image: Tim Duncan
Source : usatoday

Tim Duncan was born in 1976 in America. The former professional basketball athlete played for the San Antonio Spurs for his entire 19-year NBA career. Duncan is often regarded as the greatest power forward of all time and one of the greatest players in NBA history.

Tim won 5 times NBA Championships, two times NBA MVP, and three times NBA Finals MVP. He is the only player who is selected to both the ALL-NBA and All-Defensive teams for 13 consecutive seasons.

Other greatest free throw shooters are listed here with their points:

Player's NamePoints Made
Michael Jordan5987
Karl Malone4761
Wilt Chamberlain3607
Kobe Bryant5640
Jerry West4457
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar5762
Kevin Durant4878
Magic Johnson3701
Dwyane Wade3954
James Harden3637


Best free throw percentage by year

The best free throw percentage ever was recorded in the 2008-09 NBA season with 98.05%. José Calderón holds the record in his name. He missed only 3 free throws in that season!

The best free throw percentages of recent years are mentioned here.

Best free throw percentage 2023

The best free throw percentage in 2023 was 93.4%. It was recorded by Tyler Herro. The second was 91.9% made by Kevin Durant.

Here's the list of the players along with their recorded throw percentage in the NBA 2022-23 season:

  • Stephen Curry 91.5%
  • Damian Lillard 91.4%
  • Shai Gilgeous-Alexander 90.5%
  • Trey Murphy III  90.5%
  • Kyrie Irving 90.5%
  • Fred VanVleet 89.8%
  • Mikal Bridges 89.5%
  • Cole Anthony 89.4%

Best free throw percentage 2022

The best free throw percentage in the 2021-22 season was 92.5% recorded by Jordan Poole. Stephen Curry had a free throw percentage of 92.3%.

Other players along with their free throw percentage in the 2021-22 season are listed here:

  • Kevin Durant 91.0%
  • Trae Young 90.4%
  • Danilo Gallinari 90.4%
  • Desmond Bane 90.3%
  • Darius Garland 89.2%
  • Khris Middleton 89.0%
  • Kentavious Caldwell-Pope 89.0%
  • Immanuel Quickley 88.1%
  • Damian Lillard 87.8%

Best free throw percentage 2021

The best free throw percentage in the 2020-21 season was recorded by Chris Paul with 93.4%. Damian Lillard recorded a 92.8% free throw percentage to rank second. 

Other players leading in the least with their free throw percentage recorded in 2021 are listed below:

  • Danilo Gallinari 92.5%
  • Kyrie Irving 92.2%
  • Stephen Curry 91.6%
  • Coby White 90.1%
  • Kemba Walker 89.9%
  • Khris Middleton 89.8%
  • Jordan Clarkson 89.6%
  • Tobia Harris 89.2%
  • Immanuel Quickley 89.1%

Who is the greatest free throw shooter of all time?

Image: Karl Malone, the greatest free-throw shooter of all time.
Source : nba

The greatest free-throw shooter of all time is Karl Malone.  He recorded 9787 free throws in his career. 

The American professional basketball athlete was born in 1963. Karl is known as one of the greatest power forward in NBA history. Malone became NBA Most Valuable Player twice and fourteen times NBA All-Star.

He recorded 36,928 career points and ranked third all-time in NBA history.

Other greatest free throw shooters of all time are as follows:

Player's NameFree Throws
Moses Malone9018
Kobe Bryant8378
Lebron James8087
Oscar Robertson7694
James Harden7357
Michael Jordan7327
Dirk Nowitzki7240
Jerry West7160
Paul Pierce6918

Who has the highest free throw percentage in NBA

Stephen Curry has the highest free throw percentage in NBA. Steve Nash and Mark Price are other athletes with the highest free throw percentage in the NBA.

Stephen Curry

Image: Stephen Curry in a white hoodie with basketball
Source : facebook

The American professional basketball player, Stephen Curry is the player with a free throw of highest 90.91 percent.

He was born in 1988. The athlete plays for the Golden State Warriors of the NBA. Curry is regarded as the greatest shooter and one of the greatest players of all time.

Stephen is a four-time NBA champion.  He won NBA Most Valuable Player (MVP) twice. He has been an NBA Finals MVP, an NBA All-Star Game MVP, and a nine-time NBA All-Star.

Steve Nash

Image: Steve Nash
Source : cnn

Steve Nash ranks second for the highest free throw percentage in the NBA with a free throw of 90.43, only a little less than Stephen Curry.

The Canadian basketball star was born in 1974. He played for Los Angeles Lakers for the season 2014-14 before his retirement. Nash has also served as head coach for the Brooklyn Nets

Nash was an eight-time All-Star and a seven-time All-NBA selection during his 18 seasons in the NBA.

Mark Price

Image: Mark Price
Source : espn

Mark Price stands 3rd for the highest free throw percentage in the NBA with 90.39%.

The former basketball player was born in 1964 in America. He played for Orlando Magic before retiring. He has recently served Charlotte 49rs as the head coach.

Mark is considered one of the most consistent shooters in the league. He finished his career with a 40% three-point field goal shooting percentage.

Here's the list of other leading players for the highest free throw percentage in the NBA.

PlayerFree Throw Percentage
Rick Barry89.98%
Damian Lillard89.54%
Peja Stojaković89.48%
Chauncey Billups89.40%
Ray Allen89.39%
J.J. Redick89.18%
Calvin Murphy89.16%
Scott Skiles88.91%
Reggie Miller88.77%
Kevin Durant88.60%

Worst free throw shooter in nba history

Image: Ben Wallace, the worst free throw shooter in NBA
Source : nba

Ben Wallace is the worst free-throw shooter in NBA history. He has a mere 41.4% success rate. Out of 2,679 free throws attempted, he missed 1570 of them during his 17-year NBA career.

Wallace won the NBA championship with the Detroit Pistons in 2004 despite his poor shooting from the line. He had excellent defensive skills so he won the Defensive Player of the Year award in 2002, 2003, 2005, and 2006. He also won the Best Rebounder award in 2002 and 2003.

Other athletes fulfilling the list of worst free throw shooters in NBA history along with their throw percentage are as in the table below:

Player's NameFree Throw Percentage
Andre Drummond47.49%
DeAndre Jordan47.5%
Wilt Chamberlain51.1%
Shaquille O’Neal52.7%
Johnny Green55.3%
Bill Russell56.1%
Dwight Howard56.7%
Josh Smith, Walt Bellamy63.2%
Vin Baker63.8%
Rudy Gobert63.9%