Cleveland Cavaliers small forward LeBron James has scored more points in the NBA Playoffs than any other player in league history.
With his 28-point showing over the first two-plus quarters of Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Boston Celtics at TD Garden in Boston Thursday night, James moved past Chicago Bulls legend Michael Jordan for first on the NBA’s all-time postseason scoring list.
Jordan scored 5,987 points in just 179 playoff games with the Bulls.
Earlier this postseason, James passed former Milwaukee Bucks/Los Angeles Lakers great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar for second place on the NBA’s all-time playoff scoring list in a 125-103 win over the Toronto Raptors in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals at Quicken Loans Arena.
In addition to James’ scoring prowess in the postseason, he ranks in the top 10 in three-pointers made, assists, rebounds and steals in NBA Playoffs history.
In the closeout win over the Celtics, James scored a game-high 35 points on 13-of-18 shooting, including a four-for-seven showing from three-point range.
James added eight rebounds, eight assists, three steals and one blocked shot over 35 minutes of action. For the second time in three games at Boston in the East Finals, James and his fellow starters did not play in the fourth quarter because of the Cavaliers’ lead on the scoreboard.
James used his hustle on the offensive end to get himself going in Game 5.
After power forward Kevin Love had a two-point attempt blocked by Boston forward Jae Crowder, James corralled the loose ball and got the put-back to fall. Then, on the next trip down the floor, James fought off contact from Crowder and made the layup. Although James missed the ensuing free throw, he remained aggressive on the offensive end of the floor.
Up by 11 points after a layup from center Tristan Thompson as well as baskets from guards Kyrie Irving and J.R. Smith, James again fought through a foul and got a layup to go. Then, after stealing a pass from Celtics forward Jonas Jerebko, James got space in the lane after a post-up and threw down a right-handed dunk that put the Cavaliers up, 28-12, and forced another Boston timeout.
On the way to franchise records for the most points in a quarter (43) and half (75) in a playoff game, James tallied 20 on seven-of-eight shooting. Additionally, with their 60 second-half points, the Cavaliers completed the most prolific game, 135 points, in franchise playoff history.
After Irving’s quick start in the second half, James converted a driving layup and then, knocked down a jumper, which pushed Cleveland’s lead out to 25 points, 90-65, and forced a Celtics timeout.
Following a barrage of long-distance shots from Irving and Love, James pulled up for and buried a left-wing triple, which moved him past Jordan atop the NBA Playoffs scoring list.
For good measure, James added a right-wing three-pointer for Cleveland’s next basket, and then, pulled up from well beyond the arc and converted his third straight triple, en route to tallying the Cavaliers’ final nine points of the third quarter.
In addition to his regular-season records, James is the Cavaliers' franchise leader for points scored (3,657), scoring average (29.26 points per game), assists (940), field goals made (1,287) and attempted (2,732), free throws made (887) and attempted (1,216), three-pointers made (196) and attempted (619), defensive rebounds (941), total rebounds (1,128), steals (227) and minutes played (5,287) over 125 games with Cleveland during the postseason.