The Los Angeles Lakers may be out of playoff contention, but LeBron James is making history by passing Michael Jordan on an illustrious list.
Entering Wednesday night, James needed 13 points to surpass His Airness. Midway through the second quarter, James tied Jordan with a mid-range jumper to tie Jordan. A few possessions later, James took the ball to the basket and finished through contact to pass MJ. He calmly accepted congratulations from his teammates and sauntered to the free throw line.
LeBron James has passed Michael Jordan for fourth on the all-time scoring list.
But, the Lakers (+5) trail the Nuggets by 13. pic.twitter.com/VZVAHLBl7H
— The Action Network (@ActionNetworkHQ) March 7, 2019
LeBron James wears the No. 23 because of Michael Jordan.
And he just passed him on the NBA's all-time scoring list ? pic.twitter.com/o9QkKoht4E
— ESPN (@espn) March 7, 2019
By passing Jordan, James moves into fourth on the all-time scoring list. He trails only Kobe Bryant, Karl Malone, and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. So far this season, James has passed Jordan along with Wilt Chamberlain.
The only other active player in the top 10 is Dirk Nowitzki. The German is only a handful of points behind Chamberlain and he’ll likely move into sixth all-time before retiring—whenever that may be.
James knew he had Jordan’s record in sight prior to the game. Despite what anyone will tell you, it’s impossible not to know. The Laker understood the magnitude of the moment and he let the world know.
Can’t even front. This is going to be UNREAL!! Wow man
— LeBron James (@KingJames) March 7, 2019
But James has criticized his teammates for being distracted and not focusing on the team’s now-futile playoff push. Meanwhile, James is taking to social media to post about his own individual accomplishments whenever he pleases. For reference, LeBron posted the following post to Instagram after Los Angeles lost to the lowly Memphis Grizzlies.
View this post on Instagram
I literally have no words! I guess like @realcoleworld said “Even when the dark out, the sun is shining somewhere”. Throughout it all no matter good or bad appreciate the journey. Thank you to all who continue to take this journey with me. ??❤️#thekidfromakron? #striveforgreatness? #jamesgang?
The Lakers have fallen out of the Western Conference playoff picture completely rendering James’ first season in Los Angeles an utter failure. Sure, King James has his individual accomplishments but failing to make the playoffs does serious damage to his legacy.
It’s still too early to decide where he stacks up alongside Jordan among the all-time greats. We know he’s surpassed him on the scoring list, but that’s only one statistic among many.
Either way, turn on post notifications so you don’t miss James congratulating himself on his most recent achievement.
In all seriousness though, James is one of the best to ever play the game of basketball and he deserves this moment. It’s unfortunate that it has to come during this dumpster fire of a season. He deserves the opportunity to celebrate this moment even if the optics are less than favorable.