The NBA’s New Scoring King

James doing his pregame ritual of the chalk toss. (Creative Commons)

A near 40 year old NBA record was broken in early February. LeBron James passed the all-time great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in career points. He finished the historic night with 38 points, leaping over Kareem’s record with a post-fadeaway jump shot in the third quarter.

This achievement was a 20 year process for James who has averaged 27 points per game for his career. Since his rookie year, he’s averaged over 25 points per game every season. Despite his amazing scoring ability, James is far from just a pure scorer. In an interview with ESPN’s Dave McMenamin, he explains how he’s always been a “pass-first guy” who loves to see the success of his teammates. He backs up that claim by having over 10,000 assists for his career, which has him at number four in the all-time assist leaders list. He’s also in the top 40 for all-time rebounding, a list filled with elite centers and forwards. Many members of the list stand over 7 feet tall. James has over 10,000 rebounds recorded throughout his career despite primarily playing the forward and guard positions.

Hall of Fame players fill the all-time scoring leader list, and the players become more and more great as the ranking increases. James, Abdul-Jabbar, Karl Malone, Kobe Bryant, and Michael Jordan make up the top 5 players (in that order from 1st to 5th) in all-time scoring. Those greats are all members of the NBA’s all-time top 75 players list, have won at least one league MVP, and have made multiple NBA All-Star Games. Of all the players who have ever played the game, only one can say that they’ve scored more points than anyone who’s ever played in the NBA; the NBA’s new scoring king, LeBron James.

All of James’ stops throughout his career, (in order) the Cleveland Cavaliers, the Miami Heat, and the Los Angeles Lakers. (Wikimedia Commons)