NBA game Los Angeles Lakers – Oklahoma City Thunder. LeBron James is pictured in Los Angeles on February 7, 2023.
Los Angeles – Basketball player LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers has become the best scorer in NBA history. In the game against Oklahoma City, he scored 38 points and a total of 38,390 points, beating the previous record of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar by three, who came to personally congratulate him and symbolically hand over the ball.
Photogallery: Basketball NBA 2022/23
“It's a great honor for me to stand here next to a legend like Kareem. Thank you so much to my family, without whom I would not be who I am. This is an incredible moment, better than I could have ever dreamed of,” said 38-year-old James and could hardly hold back tears of emotion. In a live broadcast, a number of celebrities and US President Joe Biden congratulated him on the record.
While the 75-year-old Abdul-Jabbar, who has held the record since 1984, needed 1,560 games in the 1970s and 1980s to reach 38,387 points, James 150 games less was enough. He averages over 27 points per game.
Today, however, he had to significantly exceed his long-term average if he wanted to break the record. However, fans believed in him and some even paid $75,000 to see his historic record with their own eyes. And James did not disappoint them.
He already had 20 points at halftime, added another 16 points in the third quarter, and broke the record 10 seconds before the end of the third twelve-minute period. The match was then interrupted for about ten minutes due to the ceremonial.
However, Oklahoma did not let the break stop them and took a double-digit lead in the fourth quarter with a 12-0 run. The Thunder players didn't let that go and spoiled the celebration of James' record in the Lakers hall by winning 133:130. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander contributed 30 points. James scored only two points in the last quarter.
“It's hard to say how it hit me. It hit me a lot when my family came to the court after I broke the record and I saw all my friends and family. It still hasn't hit me yet,” James said after the game. “The fact that I can still play at that level, twenty years later and with that number of minutes per game, in the regular season and the playoffs, and I'm still at the top, that's an incredible feeling,” he added.
By breaking the record, James revived the debate about who is the best basketball player in history. “I myself know what I bring every night and what I can do on the court. I've always felt like I'm the best to play the game, but there are a lot of other great players out there and I'm happy to be a part of their journey. Everyone has your favorite, let others decide,” said the four-time NBA champion on the topic of the greatest player of all time.
Abdul-Jabbar's record has long been considered unbeatable. The third-best scorer in history, Karl Malone, extended his career to 41 years and was still 1,459 points short, 4,744 points short of Kobe Bryant and 6,095 points short of Michael Jordan.
“I never thought I would see two players score over 38,000 points. I remember well when my teammate Kareem broke the record. And now it's here again. With this, LeBron cemented his legacy,” said the legendary Magic Johnson. “This record has been around for 40 years and most people thought it would never be broken. And now it's here,” added league commissioner Adam Silver.
In the shadow of James' record remained the extraordinary performance of reigning MVP Nikola Jokic, who managed to record a triple double for the second time in his career in the first half of Denver's 146:112 win over Minnesota. In the end, Jokič scored 20 points, 16 assists and 12 rebounds in just 27 minutes, and in the end he could rest with a big lead. Michael Porter scored 19 of his 30 points in the quarter. It was the second-best quarter in club history for Denver. The Nuggets also set a season high with 146 points and 44 assists.
Brooklyn's Cam Thomas broke the 40-point mark for the third time in a row, becoming the youngest player in history at the age of 21. Even his 43 points did not prevent the Nets from losing to Phoenix 112:116. Thomas, who gets more space in the absence of stars, is averaging 44.6 points per game in the last three games. Deandre Ayton scored 35 points for Phoenix.
Czech representative Vít Krejčí only watched from the bench as Atlanta lost to New Orleans 107:116. Trae Young had 16 points and 16 assists for the Hawks. Brandon Ingram led the Pelicans with 30 points.
Legends and the American president congratulated James on breaking the NBA record
Players, coaches, legends and the American president congratulated LeBron James on breaking the NBA scoring record. The star basketball player of the Los Angeles Lakers scored 38 points in Tuesday's game against Oklahoma City (130:133) and became the best scorer in the history of the competition with 38,390 points.
The previous record holder was the star of the 70s and 80s Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. “I always knew that the record could be broken. It just needed someone who would continue to focus on the offense,” said 75-year-old Abdul-Jabbar, who congratulated James personally on the field. “LeBron's career is the career of a man who planned to dominate the sport. And he's been doing it for almost 20 years. You have to appreciate him just for the way he plays and the longevity and dominance he has,” added the 38,387 point author.
Another former legend, Magic Johnson, appreciated the fact that James created a new record in the jersey of the Los Angeles club. “I never thought anyone would break Kareem's record. It makes it all the more valuable to me and our fans that you wear the purple and gold and you did it as a Laker. It's a historic moment because we will never see another LeBron James.” said the five-time NBA champion.
Congratulations to James also came from the White House from US President Joe Biden: “You broke an amazing record with all your heart and soul. You elevated the sport. What's more, like Kareem, Bill Russell and others who were here before you, you inspired a whole nation.”
According to NBA commissioner Adam Silver, the extraordinary thing about James' performance is that he reached it while still at full strength. “It's a monumental performance that confirms his consistent excellence over 20 seasons in the league. And it's amazing that LeBron is still playing at the highest level and his basketball history is still being written,” said the head of the best league in the world.
Kyrie Irving, his teammate from Cleveland's 2016 championship team, expects James to continue his great performances. congratulate him, celebrate him as much as possible and still enjoy the show he is putting on,” said the new Dallas signing.
Legendary San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich had words of appreciation for his long-time rival: “LeBron is a confident person. He knows he's a great player. He knows what he's accomplished. But he still has his humility. He hasn't lost it.” the new NBA record holder was honored by its five-time winner Popovich.
Brooklyn – Phoenix 112:116, Denver – Minnesota 146:112, LA Lakers – Oklahoma City 130:133, Memphis – Chicago 104:89, New Orleans – Atlanta 116:107, Orlando – New York 98:102.
Southwest Division :
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