Before LeBron James played his first-ever NBA game that dates back 13 years ago, he had his gameday lunch with NBA legend Moses Malone. On Tuesday, the Cleveland Cavaliers superstar surpassed the man he affectionately calls as "Uncle Mo" on the league's all-time scoring list.
According to USA Today, James's first point against the Milwaukee Bucks moved him ahead of Malone (27,409 career points). James, who has 27,442 points, finished with 34 points, 12 rebounds and seven assists in the Cavaliers' 114-108 overtime win against Milwaukee.
ESPN adds that as James continues to climb the all-time scoring ranks, he has passed a diverse group of players along the way. The past several players he passed were big men - Malone for eighth, Elvin Hayes for ninth, Hakeem Olajuwon for 10th, Oscar Robertson for 11th and Dominique Wilkins for 12th. Meanwhile, if James will consistently score 25 points per game and play 73 games this season, he will finish ahead of his former teammate, Shaquille O'Neal (28, 596 points).
The occasion of pushing past Malone also caused James to reflect on him. Malone, a three-time MVP and one-time champion, died in September 2015 at age 60 and had a great appreciation of James' talent and accomplishments. James recalls that Malone gave him a lot of stories, and so, he was very sad when Malone passed away. The Cleveland Cavaliers star also shared how Malone was always just there for him, and how his new NBA record is just very special.
Malone also had advice for James: "Stay humble to the game and love the game. Don't worry about what anybody says. Work on the things you need to work on. Always think of yourself as a winner. Don't worry about the MVP. I just loved the game. When you work hard, you're going to get the benefits."