LeBron James has enjoyed an age-defying and stellar 19th season in the league, putting up historic numbers but now he looks likely to finish the season with barely anything tangible to show for it. James took the lead in the race for the NBA's scoring title last month after some insane 50-point performances but his lack of availability late in the season may have cost him the scoring title.
Joel Embiid, who believes he should win the MVP award this season, has seemingly decided to end on as high a note as he can, and he dropped 45 points against the Indiana Pacers on Tuesday night in service of that. In doing so, Embiid took his points per game tally above LeBron James, the Sixers man is now averaging 30.4 points a game, 0.1 more than the King.
LeBron will have to play in 2 of the remaining 3 games for the Lakers if he is to be considered eligible for the scoring title but considering that the team no longer has anything to play for, it would be unlikely that we see James on the court again before the end of the regular season.
Even if he does play, he will have to match and surpass Embiid, which will likely mean scoring 35 or more points in each game. Whether LeBron would do that in his continued pursuit for the regular-season all-time points tally remains to be seen, although there is nothing else to pursue otherwise.
The scoring title also has stiff competition in the form of Giannis Antetokounmpo, whose 18-point night against the Bulls has pushed him down to below 30 points per game. If either Embiid or Giannis can clinch the scoring title, it will provide a massive boost to their respective MVP campaigns, and with seeding in the Eastern Conference still very much undecided, we will likely see some big performances from both in the few remaining regular-season games.