LeBron James of the Lakers broke Kareem Abdul-career Jabbar’s record of 38,387 points, becoming the all-time best scorer in N.B.A. history. This record originally looked unachievable for anyone, but James has developed a reputation for making the seemingly impossible part of his routine.
In the final seconds of Tuesday night’s game against the Oklahoma City Thunder, he broke the record with a fadeaway 2-point shot. James jogged back toward the other basket while spreading his arms wide like he was flying. Then he raised them up and turned to face the thousands of spectators who had come to witness him make history as he peered up into the stands.
As his loved ones leaped out of their seats in joy and joined him on the court, he took a brief moment to halt, knelt down, placed his hands on his knees, and grinned. His eyes were wet with tears.
Even greats like Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant had been unable to break the record for years. But James, who is 38 and playing in his 20th season, is still one of the NBA’s top players and scores points like crazy. He has made tens of thousands of dunks, fadeaways, free throws, 3-pointers, hook shots, and everything else since the Cleveland Cavaliers selected him top overall in the 2003 NBA Draft. James’ most recent act of defying age-related odds will buttress the argument made by his admirers that he, not Jordan, is the greatest player to ever play the game.