LeBron James becomes first player in NBA history to score 40,000 points

Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) signals during an NBA basketball game against the LA Clippers on February 28, 2024 at Crypto.com Arena in Los Angeles, CA. (Photo by Ric Tapia/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) (Ric Tapia/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's scoring record was once deemed as unbreakable - but it's now being shattered.

LeBron James surpassed the Hall of Famer last year to become the NBA's all-time leading scorer - now, The King has invented his own exclusive fraternity.

The four-time MVP became the first player in NBA history to score 40,000 points in a career.

Entering the night, James needed just nine points to reach the mark - the last time James scored less than 10 points was Jan. 5, 2007, so this was pretty much a lock.

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He airballed his first shot, but knocked down his next two to get to within four. He took a seat with 3:19 to go in the quarter, so fans had to wait just a tad longer. James started the second quarter, and promptly got a layup to put him one bucket shy.

He missed his first attempt at it - a deep three-pointer. But on their next possession, he pulled out a spin move in the paint for another layup, putting him at 40,000 on the dot.

James has certainly lived up to the billing as "The Chosen One" from that famous 2002 Sports Illustrated piece written by the late Grant Wahl - 40,000 points are just an addition to one of the greatest resumes ever.

He is in his 21st NBA season at age 39, yet he's hardly shown any signs of slowing down.

Entering Saturday night, James, who was selected to his NBA record 20th All-Star Game earlier this year, is averaging 25.3 points, 7.9 assists, and 7.1 rebounds per game. He's one of just four players this season, with at least 50 games played, to average at least 25-7-7, along with Nikola Jokić, Luka Dončić, and Trae Young.

Out of players who have played more than 100 games at age 35 and older, James' 27.2 points per game are the most ever by a decent margin. Second is Michael Jordan, who averaged 22.5 in 171 games after turning 35 - Saturday marks James' 245th game since turning that age.

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Including the playoffs, James is playing in his 1,757th game on Saturday, 40 shy of Abdul-Jabbar's all-time mark.

James has been vocal about his desire to play with his eldest son, Bronny, who is eligible for this year's NBA Draft. However, there is now speculation he also wants to play with his younger son, Bryce, who some scouts say actually profiles better than his older brother. Bryce is not eligible to play in the NBA until 2026.

But with the way LeBron continues to play, who's to say he can't last two more years?

Sure, many of those who feel Jordan is the greatest will feel that way no matter what James does - even if he scores another 40,000 points.

But 20 years of dominance in basketball is unprecedented - and so is the milestone James achieved on Saturday. That should be the conversation - not arguing about who's better.

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