LeBron James’ Quest for 40,000 Career Points: Anticipating the Milestone Moment for the Lakers Superstar

LeBron James might be running out of records to break, but he’s still making history.

LeBron James

A year after becoming the NBA’s all-time scoring leader, James is now on the verge of reaching yet another impressive milestone. With Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s record of 38,387 points well in James’ rearview, the Lakers superstar is now on the verge of reaching 40,000 points in his storied career.

James entered the 2023-24 season 1,348 points shy of the milestone. He’s now within 150 points of the mark as the Lakers look to continue their postseason push out of the All-Star break.

When will LeBron James reach 40,000 points? Take stock of where he currently stands and how he can continue to rewrite the history book in his 21st season.

LeBron James scoring tracker

When will LeBron James reach 40,000 points?

LeBron James is 74 points shy of the 40,000-point mark.

Based on his current scoring average of 24.8 points per game, James will reach the mark in three games. At his current pace, he will reach 40,000 points on Monday, March 4 when the Lakers host the Thunder.

James’ absence in the Lakers’ first game out of the All-Star break should serve as a reminder that he is not guaranteed to be available for each game.

LeBron James vs. Oscar Schmidt’s career points record

LeBron James is 200 points shy of scoring the most career points in basketball history. The record is currently held by Hall of Famer Oscar Schmidt, who amassed 49,737 points over a 28-year career.

Based on his current scoring average of 24.8 points per game, James will surpass Schmidt in 11 games. At his current pace, James will reach 49,738 points on March 16 against the Warriors.

Schmidt’s record includes points scored on the professional level, for the Brazilian National Team and in All-Star Games. Schmidt was drafted in the 1984 NBA Draft but never appeared in an NBA game.

After scoring eight points in the 2024 NBA All-Star Game, James brought his total to 49,480 points. His total includes points scored in the NBA regular season, NBA Playoffs, Play-In Tournament, In-Season Tournament Championship, All-Star Games and international competitions.

Lakers basketball schedule 2023-24

The Lakers have 26 regular-season games remaining after the All-Star break. James missed seven of Los Angeles’ first 56 games this season and continues to manage a lingering ankle injury.

Here is the Lakers’ schedule for the next month of action, a period in which James could reach 40,000 points and surpass Schmidt’s record:

Date Opponent Time (ET) TV channel
Feb. 28 at Clippers 10 p.m. ESPN
Feb. 29 vs. Wizards 10:30 p.m.
March 2 vs. Nuggets 8:30 p.m. ABC
March 4 vs. Thunder 10:30 p.m. NBA TV
March 6 vs. Kings 10:30 p.m.
March 8 vs. Bucks 10 p.m. ESPN
March 10 vs. Timberwolves 9:30 p.m. ESPN
March 13 at Kings 10 p.m. ESPN
March 16 vs. Warriors 8:30 p.m. ABC
March 18 vs. Hawks 10:30 p.m.
March 22 vs. 76ers 10:30 p.m. NBA TV
March 24 vs. Pacers 10:30 p.m. NBA TV

LeBron James career scoring average

James has averaged at least 20 points per game in each season of his 21-year NBA career. His longevity and health have allowed him to put his all-time scoring record at a place that will be hard to match, let alone surpass.

Even in his 21st season at age 39, James is averaging 24.8 points per contest. While his scoring average is his lowest since his rookie campaign, James would turn in his highest single-season points total since 2017-18 if he is available for 69 games at his current scoring average.

James has not scored 1,700 points in a single season since arriving in Los Angeles, where he averaged a total of 55.6 games over his first five seasons.

Season Points per game Total points
2003-04 20.9 1,654
2004-05 27.2 2,175
2005-06 31.4 2,478
2006-07 27.3 2,132
2007-08 30.0 2,250
2008-09 28.4 2,304
2009-10 29.7 2,258
2010-11 26.7 2,111
2011-12 27.1 1,683
2012-13 26.8 2,036
2013-14 27.1 2,089
2014-15 25.3 1,743
2015-16 25.3 1,920
2016-17 26.4 1,954
2017-18 27.5 2,251
2018-19 27.4 1,505
2019-20 25.3 1,698
2020-21 25.0 1,126
2021-22 30.3 1,695
2022-23 28.9 1,590
2023-24 24.8 1,274
Career 27.1 39,926

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