With his third made field goal against the Denver Nuggets on Friday, LeBron James passed Wilt Chamberlain to become the player with the third-most field goals in NBA history. Chamberlain ended his career with 12,681 field goals. Coincidentally. Chamberlain recorded his last field goal with the Los Angeles Lakers.
James is now ranked third in both field goals and total points. James passed Kobe Bryant to become the NBA’s third all-time leading scorer on Jan. 25, 2020 in Bryant’s hometown of Philadelphia the night before Bryant tragically died.
Continuing to move the game forward @KingJames. Much respect my brother #33644— Kobe Bryant (@kobebryant) January 26, 2020
Remarkably, James isn’t ranked third in field goals attempted despite being ranked third in total points and field goals. James still trails Bryant by over 1,000 field goal attempts in that area.
James’ next target for made field goals is Karl Malone, who made 13,528 field goals during his 19-year career. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is the all-time leader in field goals with 15,837 field goals. Malone and Abdul-Jabbar both retired with the Lakers.
For points, James also trails Malone (36,928) and Abdul-Jabbar (38,387). Both of those records were viewed as unbreakable for a long time, but with how well James is playing in his 18th year, it’s looked increasingly possible, if not likely.
Even if James doesn’t pass Malone and Abdul-Jabbar, he’ll end his career as the only player ranked in the top-10 in points, field goals, assists and triple-doubles. Something tells me that those accolades, on top of his four NBA championships, four Finals MVPs, four league MVPs and two Olympic gold medals will be enough to get him into The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
Long live The King.