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Tracking LeBron James’ pursuit of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s all-time scoring record

As LeBron James enters his 20th season in the NBA, his sights will be firmly set on Kareem Abdul-Jabbar as he chases the all-time scoring record.

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Los Angeles Lakers v Philadelphia 76ers Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

LeBron James’ long, long list of impressive accolades looks set to have its crown jewel placed atop it in the coming year. Entering this season, LeBron sits just 1,325 points behind Kareem Abdul-Jabbar for the all-time scoring record. It’s a point total LeBron has reached in every season but one, that being the COVID- and injury-shortened 2020-21 campaign.

For reference, to break that record, LeBron would have to average just 16.2 points per game over an 82-game season. Now, there are a lot of factors that will go into that total, whether it’s the fact he’s never averaged fewer than 20.9 points per game or that he’s played 82 games only once in his career.

Because of that, we’ll keep an updated tracker of LeBron’s point total after each game this season and how many points away from Kareem’s record he stands as well. 52 games into the season, LeBron James has played 41 games and sits 89 points behind Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

After a slow start to the season, LeBron James hit his groove as a scorer, replicating his performance of last year in that aspect. However, he’s also missed eight games and counting this season. Factoring his slow start and hot run that followed with his games missed into account, here’s an updated look at when he may break the record.

LeBron Chasing Down Kareem

PPG Games to catch Opponent Date
PPG Games to catch Opponent Date
28 58.3 vs. Pelicans Feb. 15
29 56.7 at Warriors Feb. 11
30 55.2 vs. Bucks Feb. 7
30.2 54.9 at Pelicans Feb. 4

After a five-game road trip from Jan. 28 through Feb. 4, the Lakers are home more often than not in the range LeBron could break the record. From Feb. 7 until March 26, 14 of the Lakers 21 games are at home. One of those road goals comes against the Warriors as are two of the home games, which could save Draymond Green from a potentially awkward situation.

Ultimately, trying to predict the game LeBron may break the record is a moot point given all the factors. Instead, continue checking in on this tracker after each game to see where he stands after each game in the race to 38,387 points.

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