The Cleveland Cavaliers may have lost the game, but at least LeBron James had something to celebrate. In a losing effort to the San Antonio Spurs on Tuesday night, James became the youngest player in NBA history to score 30,000 points.
Overall, James is now the seventh player to score 30,000 points in their career. Of the other six players on the list, four of them — Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Karl Malone, Kobe Bryant, and Wilt Chamberlain – are former Lakers.
Although he missed another game, rookie point guard Lonzo Ball, who named James as his favorite player growing up, took a moment with Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN to congratulate James and recall some of his favorite plays prior to the Lakers facing off against the Boston Celtics
Lonzo Ball congratulates LeBron James and talks about what makes LeBron great, his favorite LeBron moments growing up. pic.twitter.com/sjr952so9B
— Ohm Youngmisuk (@NotoriousOHM) January 24, 2018
Ball and the other young players from his generation grew up with an NBA dominated by James, so it’s no surprise that he shows up as a favorite. However, even contemporaries of James, like Lakers legend Kobe Bryant, offered congratulations for reaching the milestone:
— Kobe Bryant (@kobebryant) January 24, 2018
Of course, James will hit the free agent market this summer and the Lakers figure to be one of the teams that will pursue him. If the Cavaliers continue to struggle — they have just one win in their last seven games — it wouldn’t be surprising if he decides to take his talents elsewhere once again.
At 33 years old, James is certainly heading into the latter stage of his career, but he has taken phenomenal care of his body and statistically has yet to show any real signs of slowing down.
He will be eligible for a max contract next summer starting at just over $35 million per year, and will be at the top of most teams wish lists.
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