NBA scoring title race could be historic

Just .04 points separate James Harden from Russell Westbrook in their bids for the NBA scoring title. Bill Baptist/NBAE/Getty Images

The closest scoring race in NBA history?

That's what the stats say with 10 days to go in the regular season.

After scoring 41 points Sunday to Russell Westbrook's 40, Houston's James Harden is averaging 27.50 points per game, which is a mere 0.04 points per game better than Ridiculous Russ' 27.46 PPG.

The previous closest race in NBA history was 1977-78, when San Antonio's George Gervin edged Denver's David Thompson by 0.07 points per game.

This Thursday, in fact, is the 37th anniversary of the final day of the '77-78 season, when Thompson scored 73 points in a loss to Detroit, only for Gervin -- needing 58 points to take back first place -- to answer with 63 points in New Orleans to win the scoring crown.

If Westbrook prevails, of course, it would mark just the second time in NBA history that a team had two different players lead the NBA in points per game in consecutive seasons.

That hasn't happened since the 1950s, when Paul Arizin and Neil Johnston won back-to-back scoring titles with the Philadelphia Warriors in 1952 and 1953.