When he first put his sneakers – size 49.5 – on an NBA floor in 2003, LeBron James was barely 18 years old, out of high school and saw nickname “The Chosen One” – « The Chosen One » – attached to his name. The kid from Akron (Ohio), a phenomenon of precocity, then carried on his shoulders the hopes of the North American basketball league, which was looking for an heir to superstar Michael Jordan.
Twenty seasons later, the shoulders of the one who now responds to the nickname “King James”, the king, have developed, like his prize list. With 38 points scored against the Oklahoma City Thunder, the Los Angeles Lakers player surpassed the 38,387 career point mark on Tuesday, February 7, dislodging Kareem Abdul-Jabbar from the throne of leading scorer in NBA history. with 38,390 in total. A feat achieved under the eyes of the latter, who participated in a handover ceremony between generations, immediately, without waiting for the end of the match (lost 133-130).
The Lakers winger was just 36 points short of the morning of the game to erase a mark he was talking about, at the end of January, as “one of the greatest records in sport in general, one that you don’t think will ever be broken”.
Former Lakers player Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, his now predecessor, had held the crown since April 5, 1984, when he dethroned Wilt Chamberlain – before increasing the mark for five seasons. Tuesday, in Los Angeles, in the Crypto.com Arena, formerly called Staples Center, LeBron James became the only record holder by registering his 36e point of the evening in the last seconds of the third quarter of the game against the Thunder.
Landed in the NBA with the spotlight on him like no other player before him, LeBron James responded. Drafted in first position at the time – the selection by which NBA clubs distribute the best young players – by the Cleveland Cavaliers, the player born in Ohio quickly became the face of the NBA. “Thank God I didn’t have social media back then, that’s all I can say”confessed the player, in October 2022, about his arrival in the League, of which he won the championship four times.
If he was entitled, still a high school student, to a cover of the prestigious Sports Illustratedand an incessant ballet of cameras and cameras around him, LeBron James was not, then, subject to the permanent surge of social networks – only the Frenchman Victor Wembanyama, expected next year as the future big star of basketball, must face.
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