Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James enters Tuesday evening’s game against the Oklahoma City Thunder at Crypto.com Arena needing 36 points to surpass Kareem Abdul-Jabbar to become the NBA’s career scoring leader.
Although it is likelier James will set the record in Thursday’s game against the Milwaukee Bucks at Crypto.com Arena, he could set the record Tuesday evening. He has scored 36 or more points in seven of his 43 games, including six times in his 16 games since Dec. 30, his 38th birthday.
James has scored 38,352 points in 1,409 games over 20 seasons. Abdul-Jabbar scored 38,387 points in 1,560 games over 20 seasons. He has held the record since 1984.
As he regularly is, James is listed as questionable due to left ankle soreness. However, he has played in 12 of the Lakers’ past 13 games, missing only the Jan. 30 game at Brooklyn. He was also listed as questionable before the Lakers’ last game, Saturday in New Orleans, but played, scoring 27 points in a 131-126 loss.
The Lakers (25-29) are 13th in the 15-team Western Conference, one-and-a-half games behind the Utah Jazz (27-28) in the race for the conference’s final spot in the play-in tournament. The Thunder (25-28) are 12th in the conference, a half-game ahead of the Lakers and one game behind the Jazz.
The game will be televised by Spectrum SportsNet and ESPN2 at 7 p.m.