LOS ANGELES (CNS) - Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James enters Saturday's game at New Orleans needing 63 points to surpass Kareem Abdul-Jabbar to become the NBA's career scoring leader.
James scored 26 points in Thursday's 112-111 victory over the Indiana Pacers in Indianapolis to increase his career total to 38,325 points in 1,408 games over 20 seasons. Abdul-Jabbar scored 38,387 points in 1,560 games over 20 seasons.
James is seventh in the league in scoring, averaging 30.1 points per game. If he maintains his average and does not miss a game, he would set the record Thursday at Crypto.com Arena against the Milwaukee Bucks.
As he regularly is, James is listed as questionable due to left ankle soreness. However, he has played in 11 of the Lakers' past 12 games, missing only Monday's game at Brooklyn.
James scored 20 points in a 120-117 victory over the Pelicans on Nov. 2 at Crypto.com Arena in the teams' only other meeting this season.
The Lakers (25-28) are 12th in the 15-team Western Conference, 1 1/2 games behind the Utah Jazz (27-27) in the race for the conference's final spot in the play-in tournament.
The Pelicans (26-27) are 11th in the conference, a half-game behind Utah and 1 game ahead of the Lakers. New Orleans has lost 10 consecutive games.
The game will be televised by Spectrum SportsNet and ESPN2 at 3 p.m.