LeBron James became the first player in NBA history to score 40,000 points on Saturday night.
The NBA legend reached the milestone during the second quarter of the Los Angeles Lakers’ game against the Denver Nuggets at Crypto.com Arena, shooting a layup off the glass.
James, who entered the game needing nine points to reach the milestone, used a spin move to create separation from Denver’s Michael Porter Jr. and dunked the ball with his left hand as the all-time scoring leader continues to extend his record. of scope.
The sold-out crowd in downtown Los Angeles roared with approval as James made the highly anticipated shot to reach 40,000 points.
James received a standing ovation at the next timeout, while coach Darvin Ham gave him a congratulatory pat on the chest. There was a video presentation in the arena, which was preceded and followed by James lifting the ball over his head.
LeBron James became the first player in NBA history to score 40,000 points
The legend received a standing ovation at the next timeout from the sold-out crowd.
There was a video presentation shown on the big screens of the Crypto.com Arena.
James fired an aerial on his first attempt of the night, but responded by coming out in transition for a layup for his first points and causing the Nuggets to use their first timeout. He then hit a 3-pointer in the corner before subbing him in with 3:19 left in the first quarter.
James returned to start the second quarter, driving to the basket 14 seconds into the period to set the historic score.
Four-time champion ‘King James’ became the league’s scoring king a little over a year ago when he surpassed Lakers great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.
On February 7, 2023, James broke the 34-year-old record in front of fans who had shelled out thousands of dollars to secure a seat at Crypto.com Stadium to witness history and Abdul-Jabbar himself.
The King claimed the record with 10.9 seconds left in the third quarter with a signature dagger.
He reached 39,000 points on November 21 in a Season Tournament game against the Utah Jazz.
Ham was a young fan when Abdul-Jabbar was finishing his career and assumed the record would never be challenged, much less surpassed as James has.
“But here we are,” Ham said before the game. “It’s a testament to Bron, the time and resources that he puts into himself, making sure not only that he’s healthy but that he’s healthy at a high level.”
The all-time leading scorer celebrates after continuing to put his record even further out of reach.
A little over a year ago, the Lakers star surpassed Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s record (right)
James, 39, has also played the second-most regular-season and playoff minutes in league history. He is the only NBA player with at least 10,000 points, 10,000 rebounds and 10,000 assists.
The 39-year-old is the oldest player in the NBA, but he continues to produce at an elite level in his 21st season, where he is on pace to average around 25 points per game.
On Wednesday, James scored 19 points in the fourth quarter to overcome a 21-point deficit against the Clippers as the 10th-ranked Lakers fight for a playoff spot in the crowded Western Conference.
Drafted into the league as a teenager, the Akron, Ohio native has more than lived up to the enormous expectations placed on his broad shoulders at a young age.
A versatile forward, he helped usher in the era of positionless basketball, winning four titles with three different teams, four MVP awards and four Finals MVP awards.
Used a spin move to create separation from Denver’s Michael Porter Jr. (left)
James has a player option for the 2024-25 NBA season, giving him the power to decide whether to stay with the Lakers for one more year or become an unrestricted free agent.
So far, he has refrained from committing to the Lakers beyond the current season.
In January, James was among 41 names included in USA Basketball’s player pool for the Paris Olympics.
James has not played for Team USA since winning a gold medal at the 2012 London Olympics.