In the 2010-11 season, Kobe Bryant’s 25.3 points per game — also his career average — allowed him to shoot past several legends on the NBA’s all-time scoring list that doubles as a Hall of Fame gallery: John Havlicek, Dominique Wilkins, Oscar Robertson, Hakeem Olajuwon, Elvin Hayes and Moses Malone.
Malone was the most recent victim, his No. 6 spot on the chart overtaken by Bryant on March 8 in Atlanta. Bryant concluded the 2010-11 season with 27,868 points in his 15-year career.
Up next? Shaq.
Last year, Bryant didn’t hide the fact that he was pretty pleased at having one more championship than O’Neal after the Lakers beat Boston in Game 7, and he probably isn’t going to mind surpassing his former teammate on the scoring charts, either.
Shaq’s 28,590 points are just 722 ahead of Bryant, which at the 25.3 ppg rate would take Kobe between 28 and 29 games to pass in 2011-12.
Further up the list are three former Lakers, plus MJ: Wilt Chamberlain (4th, 31,419), whom Bryant wouldn’t catch until 2012-13 at the earliest; Michael Jordan (3rd/32,292); Karl Malone (36,928) and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (38,387).