LeBron James recently broke Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's NBA scoring record. Check out this video of the moment it happened, shared by Dwyane Wade. Folks all over Twitter celebrated the accomplishment and pointed out all of the coincidental '38s' involved. Ashley Nicole Moss tweeted that "Kareem held the scoring record for 38 years and LeBron broke it with 38,388 points at 38 years old. The universe is really so poetic sometimes." Matt13 chimes in that it happened "on the 38th day of the year, and he finished with 38 points."
It's an exciting accomplishment, that's for sure. But what does Kareem Abdul Jabbar himself have to say? In his Substack this morning, he wrote that he's "thrilled" that LeBron broke his record. He elaborates:
I have written many articles lavishly praising LeBron. In 2020, I wrote an article for Sports Illustrated describing why LeBron deserved to be named Sportsperson of the Year. In the article, I wrote, "Part of being a hero is to have both the modesty to feel unworthy of such a heavy word and the strength to accept the responsibility that comes with others looking to you to be that hero. What is a hero but someone who stands up for those who can't? Who embodies our cherished ideals of sportsmanship: fair play, hard work and compassion? That pretty much describes the LeBron James I've watched and come to know since he was the No. 1 pick in the 2003 NBA draft and was named Rookie of the Year."
Bottom line about LeBron and me: LeBron makes me love the game again. And he makes me proud to be part of an ever-widening group of athletes who actively care about their community.
Kareem is truly a treasure — he's not only one of the world's greatest athletes of all time, he's also a scholar who shares insightful wisdom about sports, life, politics, culture, and more. Thanks, Kareem, for being so gracious. And congrats, LeBron, for always pushing yourself to be the greatest you can be — it's an inspirational lesson for all of us. As Kareem argues, "When one person climbs higher than the last person, we all feel like we are capable of being more."