LeBron James is now just 63 points away from Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s all-time NBA scoring record after putting up 26 points in the Los Angeles Lakers’ 112-111 win over the Indiana Pacers.
The 38-year-old also recorded seven rebounds and seven assists, while teammate Anthony Davis scored a game-high 31 to go with 14 rebounds.
“I just understood my game was needed more on the interior tonight,” James told reporters. “Needed to get some rebounds, need to get some baskets in there and and I felt like we were attacking, especially in the fourth quarter.”
It’s now two straight wins for the 12th-placed Lakers as the team tries to pull itself back into playoff contention in a congested Western Conference.
James now has 38,325 points to Abdul-Jabbars 38,387, a benchmark set when the former Lakers big man retired 36 years ago.
“I think it’s one of the greatest records in sports in general,” James said, per ESPN. “I think it’s up there with the homerun record in baseball.
“It’s one of those records that you just don’t ever see or think that would be broken and then you end up seeing guys like … you had Hank Aaron that had it for so long, you see the guys, the likes of Sammy [Sosa] and Mark McGwire and those guys, start climbing it and it was like: ‘Oh, man. This thing can really happen.’
“And you start really watching it and paying attention to it and you seen Sammy and Mark McGwire go up to bat and you’re like: ‘They got a chance to knock it out every single time.’ It was fun. For me, as a sportsperson, it was fun just watching those guys go up to bat and chase it.”
The Lakers trailed by as many as eight in the fourth quarter, but James hit a clutch three down the stretch to give his team the lead with just over two-and-a-half minutes remaining.
Davis put in another big game on the day he found out he would not be a 2023 All-Star, a controversial decision according to many fans given the center’s performances when he’s been healthy this season.
The Pacers, meanwhile, continue their skid down the Eastern Conference standings with a fourth consecutive defeat, but were boosted by the return of star guard Tyrese Haliburton on Thursday following several weeks out through injury.
James’ next chance to eat into the NBA’s scoring record comes on Saturday against the Pelicans, with the 19-time All-Star now likely to surpass Abdul-Jabbar on Tuesday against the Oklahoma City Thunder or next Thursday against the Milwaukee Bucks, although he has been managing an ankle injury all season.
LeBron James' quest to become all-time scoring leader has Lakers ticket prices skyrocketing
James needs 63 points to break Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's record of 38,387
With Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James on the cusp of becoming the NBA’s all-time leading scorer, ticket prices for the estimated game he’s going to break the record are skyrocketing.
James needs just 63 more points to break Lakers legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s record of 38,387 following his 26-point performance against the Indiana Pacers on Thursday night.
With James averaging 30.2 points per game, fans are projecting when he is going to get the job done.
Going off his average, James could get it done against the Oklahoma City Thunder on Feb. 7 at Crypto.com arena in front of the Lakers faithful. Of course, sometimes players are off and averages are just that – an average of what might happen any given night.
Some believe that James might even hold out for Thurdsay, Feb. 9 against the Milwaukee Bucks. Not only is it a great matchup with Giannis Antetokounmpo and company, but it will be a nationally televised game on TNT.
That means a lot more people would be able to tune in live to perhaps see history made once again by the Akron, Ohio native.
Looking at the game on secondary ticket markets against the Thunder, the lowest cost for a seat on Ticketmaster, which has verified resale tickets, is $369.05 with service fees.
However, with seats closer to the action on the floor, the prices rise tremendously.
Two courtside seats are currently going for a grand total of $242,000 after fees.
It costs $100,000 per seat to sit between the scorer’s table and the Lakers’ bench while having a true front-row seat to watch James potentially set the new scoring record.
Other sets of courtside seats are going for $108,900 and $60,500 as well.
For the game against the Bucks, those same two courtside seats are for sale at $242,000. However, the cheapest seat in the house is higher than the Thunder game at $445.
The price for these seats is already astronomical, but it could get even higher as James and the Lakers play on Saturday night against the New Orleans Pelicans. James will have a chance to continue shaving points off that list, giving fans a clearer picture of when he might break the record.
While it is tons of money – buyers also cannot back out with all sales being final – we are witnessing something that may never happen again in NBA history.
At age 38, James is playing at a capacity that is comparable to Tom Brady finally retiring at 45 years old from the NFL. His level of play has only gotten better with age, and there is no telling when he will ever stop lacing up his kicks, especially with his eldest son, Bronny James, soon eligible to play in the NBA.