As LeBron James enters his 19th season in the NBA, the all-time statistical leaderboard is ready to shuffle. Bron has his name etched among the top and could see it jump even higher after a full season. If he didn’t already have a Hall of Fame resume with four championships, this season can prove he's one of the best basketball players of all time.
We have potentially only a handful of seasons left from the Los Angeles Lakers superstar, as he leaves the final marks on his legendary career. These 10 records will see LeBron’s name move up in the all-time standings.
Asking LeBron James to play 82 games, something he hasn’t done since 2017-2018, at the age of 36, is asking way too much. For safe measure, let’s just say that LeBron will play at least 70 games this year when you factor in rest and have no major injuries. On the all-time list, LeBron has played 1,310 career games, which puts him 19th.
If LeBron plays at least 70 games, he will pass Jamal Crawford (1,327), Moses Malone (1,329), Gary Payton (1,335), Paul Pierce (1,343), Kobe Bryant (1,346), and tie him with Clifford Robinson (1,380). If he plays 80 games, he would surpass Reggie Miller (1,389) for 12th all time. If LeBron magically played all 82 games this year, he would be tied with Tim Duncan (1392) for 10th all-time.
If LeBron plays a full season, he has a chance to break into the top-3 of all-time minutes played. Two years ago, LeBron played 67 games and averaged 34.6 minutes per game. That average comes out to 2,318 minutes played in an entire season. If LeBron plays 70 games at around the same average, that would put him at around 2,400 minutes played in the season.
Currently, LeBron has played 50,005 career minutes in the league. That places him at sixth on the leaderboard. He trails Jason Kidd (50,111) and Kevin Garnett (50,418) with hopes of passing both in the early goings in the season. Barring any major injury, he would pass Dirk Nowitzki for third place (51,368). Next year, he could pass Karl Malone (54,852) for second place.
Three-Point Field Goals
Despite not being known as a three-point shooter, LeBron has played long enough to put himself near the top-10 in all-time three-point field goals. His current total of 1,979 has him on the cusp of 2,000 all-time. Once he gets to 2,000, he will pass Dirk Nowitzki (1,982) and Jason Kidd (1,988) for 11th all-time.
This is where it gets tricky. Damian Lillard is currently 10th all-time with 2,051. Two years ago, LeBron made 148 threes in a season. For averaging purposes, we will say LeBron will make 131 threes this season, which will put him around 2,110 for the season. That would have him just short of Paul Pierce, who is ninth with 2,143.
Free Throws Made
LeBron’s free throw shooting has gotten progressively worse as he gets older. He has averaged around 70% at the line the last three seasons. With that said, he trails Oscar Robertson by just over 100 free throws made. Even in a shortened season with injuries, LeBron made 178 free throws last year.
Robertson owns 7,694 career free throws, while LeBron is fifth with 7,582. Once LeBron moves into fourth place all-time, he can start chipping away at Kobe Bryant, Moses Malone, and Karl Malone, who all have over 8,000 career free throws made.
Given what LeBron has done from an offensive standpoint, we forget that he is a strong rebounder as well. This is the one stat that doesn’t have his name hovering around the top-10 mark; however, he is getting close to becoming the 41st player to ever record 10,000 career rebounds.
LeBron (9,751) needs 249 rebounds to get to that mark. Two years ago, he recorded over 500, while last year he had 346. That is no reason to think that he won’t get to this plateau. DeAndre Jordan owns 9,878 and is ahead of LeBron on the standings at 41st overall. Both players have a real shot to pass Red Kerr (10,092) and Shaw Marion (10,101) for 38th place.
LeBron is the greatest passing forward we have ever seen. His stats prove that, as he ranks in the top-10 in career assists. At the age of 35, he led the league in assists with a career-high 684 in one season. With Russell Westbrook in the mix, it’s hard to see LeBron recording over 500 assists this season. If he does, he would pass Magic Johnson (10,141) for sixth place.
Currently, LeBron owns 9,696 and ranks eighth. Passing Oscar Robertson (9,887) is the most realistic at the moment. Passing Johnson would be an incredible feat given the personnel on the team this year.
When it came to steals, LeBron recorded over 100 steals in a season in the first 14 of the 15 seasons he played. Two seasons after that, he recorded 78 and 72 steals. Last year, it was a career-low 48 steals for the season.
LeBron ranks 13th on the all-time list with 2,063 career steals. If he can get back to around 70 steals in a season, that means he could break the top-10. The King would pass Mookie Blaylock (2,075), Karl Malone (2,085), and Alvin Robertson (2,112) along the way. Catching Hakeem Olajuwon (2,162) would be a steep goal as LeBron hasn’t recorded over 100 steals since 2017-2018.
Last year, it was a career-low in total points for LeBron. If LeBron stays healthy, he could pass Karl Malone for second on the all-time points list. James ranks third with 35,367 career points, while Malone is second with 36,928 points. Two years ago, LBJ scored 1,698 points in the season. That would be enough to put LeBron over Malone.
LeBron will need to average around 25.0 points per game to accomplish this feat. It’s going to be a record to keep your eye on all season, especially later in the year. If LeBron doesn’t get it this year, he will get it the one after. With that said, James isn’t much for waiting around to get things done.
What is a realistic win total for the Lakers this season? Let’s say that the Lakers are good enough to win 55 games this season. First of all, LeBron needs just 31 wins this year to put him at 900 career wins. For the moment, his 869 career wins rank him eighth all-time.
If LeBron can get to 55 wins with the Lakers, that would put him at 922 career victories. That would move him past Tony Parker (892) and Dirk Nowitzki (916). Karl Malone would be next on the list with 952 wins. In a few years, LeBron could join the 1,000-win club, whose exclusive members contain only Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (1,074), Robert Parish (1,014), and Tim Duncan (1,001).
We are not going to get into the specific players who have won championships because the late Boston Celtics team led by Bill Russell helped gain some players up to eight rings. Russell leads the way with 11, but the number for LeBron has always been six titles because that is what Michael Jordan won with the Bulls.
Given how many times LeBron has played in the Finals, many media members believe that LeBron is just one title away from pushing Jordan over in the GOAT discussion. That is a talk for another time. However, a fifth title would put him right up with legends like George Mikan, Magic Johnson, Kobe Bryant, Don Nelson, Dennis Rodman, and Tim Duncan.
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