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Heading into Tuesday night's game against the Oklahoma City Thunder, Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James was just 36 points away from passing the great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar for the NBA's all-time scoring record. Despite losing the game, LeBron scored 38 points, and he has now scored more points than any player in NBA history. After breaking the record, James reacted to passing Kareem on the all-time list.
LeBron James tears up after breaking Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's record
After James knocked down the record-breaking shot, the game was stopped, and a 10-minute ceremony featuring LeBron, Abdul-Jabbar, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, and others, including LeBron's family. While speaking about hitting the record-breaking shot, James got very emotional.
“I write ‘The Man In The Arena' on my shoe every single night from Theodore Roosevelt,” James said afterward. “Tonight, I actually felt like I was sitting on top of the arena when that shot went in, and the roar from the crowd. I'm not sure if I would be able to feel that feeling again, unless it's a game-winning Finals shot.
“Everything just stopped. It gave me an opportunity to embrace it and look around and seeing my family, the fans, my friends. It was pretty cool. I probably can count on my hands how many times I have cried in 20 years, either in happiness or in defeat. So that moment was one of them when I kind of teared up a little bit. It was ‘I can't believe what's going on' tears.”
Abdul-Jabbar says LeBron has “dominated” the NBA for 20 years
Following the conclusion of the game, Kareem joined the TNT crew and he noted that LeBron has dominated the NBA for almost 20 years.
“LeBron's career is one of someone who planned to dominate this game,” Abdul-Jabbar said in an interview with TNT after the game. “And it's gone for almost 20 years now. You have to give him credit for just the way he played and for the way he's lasted and dominated. He has that indefinable essence that they call leadership.”
LeBron James By the Numbers
During his amazing career in the NBA, James has posted some eye-popping statistics.
- 20 seasons in the NBA
- 38,390 points
- 27.2 points per game average
- 2,237 three-pointers made