LeBron James passes Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s all-time minutes mark for latest NBA record


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LeBron James made more NBA history on Monday.

The Los Angeles Lakers star, in the middle of his team’s 138-94 loss to the Philadelphia 76ers, officially played more minutes than anyone else in league history. James surpassed Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s previous minutes record of 66,297.

Karl Malone is third on the list, with more than 62,700 minutes played. Longtime Lakers star Kobe Bryant is fourth, and former Dallas Mavericks big man Dirk Nowitzki is fifth. Chris Paul is the closest active player to James on the all-time minutes list, though he’s at No. 28 with just more than 47,700 minutes played. Kevin Durant is the only other active player in the top 50.

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James was already the all-time NBA minutes leader in the postseason. He has played 11,654 playoff minutes, well ahead of Tim Duncan’s 9,370. The next active player on that list is Durant at No. 19, with 6,725 minutes.

James surpassed Abdul-Jabbar’s all-time scoring record last season in an emotional moment at Crypto.com Arena. He entered Monday’s game with 39,060 career points.

LeBron James
LeBron James has played more minutes than anyone else in NBA history. (Bill Streicher/USA Today) (USA Today Sports / reuters)

James, who will turn 39 next month, is in the middle of his 21st season in the league and his sixth with the Lakers. He’s averaging 25.5 points, eight rebounds and 6.6 assists so far this season. James has played just shy of 34 minutes per game, too, which is close to his career average, despite his being more than two decades into his career.

The 76ers cruised to the dominant, 44-point win behind a 30-point triple-double from Joel Embiid despite him not playing at all in the fourth quarter. They led the entire second half and held the Lakers to 14 points in the fourth quarter en route to what was their 12th win of the season. James had a team-high 18 points for the Lakers and added five assists while shooting 8-of-12 from the field. The Lakers are 10-8 on the season, and they’ve won four of their past six games.

Although James’ career is rapidly nearing its end, he’s still playing at an incredibly high level. Both his minutes and points records, regardless of how this season and the rest of his career play out, are sure to stand for a long, long time.

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