Happy Birthday LeBron! The four-time NBA champion celebrated his 38th birthday with fanfare on Friday, scoring 47 points in the Los Angeles Lakers’ victory in Atlanta (130-121). His highest total this season plus 10 rebounds and nine assists. In 20 years of career, the Californian star has crossed the 40-point mark for the 70th time.
« I had warned my teammates before the match, so I had to get there, » he said afterwards. « But I started at 1 in 5 on shots so I wasn’t sure of anything. » LeBron James, who was playing his third game in four nights, nevertheless ended up entering 18 of 27 shots, including four of six award-winning shots, as well as seven of nine free throws. This new feat allows him to become the 4th player in the history of the North American championship to register 45 points or more at the venerable age of 38, thus joining Michael Jordan, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Jamal Crawford.
The Hawks, who, thanks to 29 points from Trae Young in particular, led by 15 points in the first two periods, then missed their chance. Before the start of the show James, author of 16 points in the 2nd and 4th quarters and 13 in the 3rd. James, who missed a small assist to finish with a triple double, is more than ever in the race to double Abdul-Jabbar in February and become the leading scorer in NBA history. Deprived of their other star Anthony Davis, injured in a foot, the Lakers, 13th in the West, thus improve a record (15 v., 21 d.) hitherto unflattering elsewhere.