Field Goal Percentage

Field goal percentage in basketball is the ratio of field goals made to field goals attempted. Its abbreviation is FG%. Three-point field goals are included in this percentage. Instead of using scales of 0 to 100%, the scale .000 to 1.000 is commonly used. A higher field goal percentage denotes higher efficiency. In basketball, a FG% of .500 (50%) or above is considered a good percentage, although this criterion does not apply equally to all positions. Guards usually have lower FG% than forwards and centers. Field goal percentage does not completely tell the skill of a player, but a low field goal percentage can indicate a poor offensive player or a player who takes many difficult shots. In the NBA, Center Shaquille O'Neal has a high career FG% (around .580) because he plays near the basket making many high percentage layups and slam dunks. Guard Allen Iverson often had a low FG% (around .420) because he took the bulk of his team's shot attempts, even with high difficulty shots.

The NBA career record for field goal percentage is held by Artis Gilmore at 0.599. The highest field goal percentage for a single season was set by Wilt Chamberlain with 0.727 in the 1972-73 season.

Field goal percentages were substantially lower in the NBA until the mid-to-late 1960s. For this reason, many early NBA stars have low field goal percentages, such as Bob Cousy at .375, and George Mikan, Bob Pettit, and Bill Russell, whose career field goal percentages of .404, .436, and .440, respectively, are much lower than later post players.

Three-point field goal percentage is usually kept as additional statistics. Its abbreviation is 3FG%. A 3FG% of .400 and above is a very good percentage.

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