LeBron James, sitting on 29,993 career points and poised to cross the 30,000-point threshold Tuesday night against the San Antonio Spurs, congratulated himself on Instagram for his pending achievement:
Only six players in NBA history have reached the mark: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (38,387), Karl Malone (36,928), Kobe Bryant (33,643), Michael Jordan (32,292), Wilt Chamberlain (31,419) and Dirk Nowitzki (30,837).
And James' teammate Dwyane Wade believes he's capable of eventually topping that list.
"I think he can. I think he can," Wade told Cleveland.com's Chris Fedor. "I've always said I think he will end (No.) 1 or 2.
"By knowing his drive, I think from there it's just about his health and as he's getting older how much he wants to go and try to get that. I think he will. I think he will. Once he looks at it and says, 'That's only 8,000 away at some point let me see what I can do,' I think he will try to go get it."
James has scored 2,000 or more points nine times in his career, meaning he would have to play at least four more seasons—at an elite level—to reach Abdul-Jabbar territory. Given that James is one of the front-runners for MVP in his age-33 season, it isn't hard to imagine four or five more years from him if he has the drive to finish as the NBA's all-time leading scorer.
"I think it would be one of those things that, just like everything else, it would be unbelievable and then he will be like 'what's next,'" Wade said of James potentially reaching that mark. "Obviously all records are meant to be broken and it would be an unbelievable feat, something that his kids and grandkids kids and everybody can talk about and be proud of, but himself, he will be on that what's next thing. Like, 'What else can I do?'"
As for Tuesday night, reaching 30,000 points will be a nice moment in what has become a somewhat dysfunctional season for the Cavaliers, which most recently included a meeting where several players reportedly questioned Kevin Love for leaving Saturday's loss against the Oklahoma City Thunder with an illness and missing Sunday's practice, per Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.
Celebrating James might be a welcome distraction for the Cavs. Especially if they beat the Spurs.