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Here are the top 35 NBA scoring leaders of all time

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There are several reasons to tune in to Los Angeles Lakers games during the 2021-22 season, and one of them is to see two future Hall of Famers attempt to improve their standing among the NBA’s 10 greatest scorers of all time.

LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony enter this season third and 10th respectively on the league’s all-time scoring list, and both have a good chance of moving up at least one spot.

James has been in third since he passed Kobe Bryant in January of 2020, but he is within striking distance of Karl Malone. With 35,367 points, King James needs 1,562 points to overtake the Mailman for second. James has failed to score at least 1,562 points in a season just twice in his 18-year career, though both times have been over the last three years.

 

When James inevitably passes Malone, whether it’s this season or the next one, he’ll shift his sights toward Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's all-time NBA record of 38,387 points.

Meanwhile, Anthony knocked Elvin Hayes out of the top 10 in 2020-21, finishing the season with 924 points over 69 games and 27,370 points for his career. It should only take Anthony a handful of games to record the 40 points required for him to move into sole possession of ninth, where Moses Malone sits with 27,409 points.

Melo would have to score 1,227 points to pass Shaquille O'Neal for eighth, which would be his best scoring output since 2017-18 as a member of the Oklahoma City Thunder. He could certainly claim the No. 8 spot at some point, but that may be as high as the 37-year-old Anthony can ultimately climb; Wilt Chamberlain is another 2,833 points ahead of Shaq in seventh.

Who are the NBA’s all-time scoring leaders?

In addition to James and Anthony, there are three other active players who are in the top 35 of the NBA’s all-time scorers: Kevin Durant (26th) and James Harden (33rd) of the Brooklyn Nets, and Russell Westbrook (34th) of the Lakers.

Here’s a look at the top 35 scorers of all time (active players in bold):

  1. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar : 38,387
  2. Karl Malone: 36,928
  3. LeBron James: 35,367
  4. Kobe Bryant: 33,643
  5. Michael Jordan: 32,292
  6. Dirk Nowitzki: 31,560
  7. Wilt Chamberlain: 31,419
  8. Shaquille O'Neal: 28,596
  9. Moses Malone : 27,409
  10. Carmelo Anthony: 27,370
  11. Elvin Hayes: 27,313
  12. Hakeem Olajuwon: 26,946
  13. Oscar Robertson: 26,710
  14. Dominique Wilkins: 26,668
  15. Tim Duncan: 26,496
  16. Paul Pierce: 26,397
  17. John Havlicek: 26,395
  18. Kevin Garnett: 26,071
  19. Vince Carter: 25,728
  20. Alex English: 25,613
  21. Reggie Miller: 25,279
  22. Jerry West: 25,192
  23. Patrick Ewing: 24,815
  24. Ray Allen: 24,505
  25. Allen Iverson: 24,368
  26. Kevin Durant: 23,883
  27. Charles Barkley: 23,757
  28. Robert Parish: 23,334
  29. Adrian Dantley: 23,177
  30. Dwyane Wade: 23,165
  31. Elgin Baylor: 23,149
  32. Clyde Drexler: 22,195
  33. James Harden: 22,045
  34. Russell Westbrook: 21,857
  35. Gary Payton: 21,813