Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James is the NBA’s new all-time leading scorer.
James surpassed Basketball Hall of Famer Kareem Abdul Jabar‘s previous record of 38,387 career points by scoring his 38,388th point on a jumper with 10.9 seconds remaining third period of the Lakers’ 133-130 loss the Oklahoma City Thunder Tuesday (February 7) night.
James entered Tuesday’s game trailing Abdul-Jabbar’s record by 35 points. The 38-year-old had previously surpassed Abdul-Jabbar’s record as the NBA’s all-time leading scorer in regular-season and postseason play during the Lakers’ loss to the Golden State Warriors last February.
Abdul-Jabbar, whose record stood for nearly 40 years, joined James on the court at Crypto.com Arena during a brief pause in the game to celebrate the record-breaking moment.
James scored an additional two points in the fourth period of Tuesday’s loss to finish with 38 points, seven rebounds and three assists in 34 minutes.
In an exclusive interview published by the Southern California News Group on Tuesday, James addressed recent comments made by Dallas Mavericks legend Dirk Nowitzki — who defeated James and the Miami Heat in the 2011 NBA Finals to win his only NBA championship — in which he claimed that he would be “running out of arguments” for Michael Jordan as the greatest of all-time once James broke the all-time scoring record.
“I’m gonna let everybody else decide where (the scoring record) puts me,” James said “It’s not for me to say now, ‘OK I’m this or that.’”
“What I bring to the table as a basketball player … I feel like I’m the best basketball player that ever played the game,” James added after a pause. “That’s just my confidence, that’s just what I bring to the table, what I possess. But as far as if the scoring record gets me to another level, I don’t know.”
James has drawn comparisons to Jordan since being regarded by most as the greatest high school prospect ever and that debate intensified throughout his legendary 20-year NBA career. The 38-year-old is two championships shy of Jordan’s six, but is likely to hold several individual NBA records by the time his career concludes.