Kareem Abdul-Jabbar has owned a ridiculous number of records in the NBA. He was so dominant throughout his extended time in the league that he was able to not only break, but shatter records held by numerous players that were previously etched in history. This now raises the question, what records did Kareem Abdul-Jabbar break?
What Records Did Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Break? Kareem has held far too many records to count up in total, but he still holds onto nine significant and very hard to break achievements. He holds the record for most points, field goals, field goal attempts, 2-point field goals, 2-point field goal attempts, minutes played, personal fouls, win shares and offensive win shares throughout his career.
Now that we know the records that he still has left standing, how hard are they to break? Who was the player that ended up breaking a lot of Kareem’s records? Let’s take a bit of a deeper look into it all.
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Who Broke A Lot of Kareem’s Records?
Michael Jordan was the breaker of a few of Abdul-Jabbar’s records that he set back in his playing days. Robert Parish and Karl Malone each broke a couple as well. Then other popular players like Manute Bol, Hakeem Olajuwon and Mark Eaton overtook another handful of those records. Kareem had so many, that so many different players were able to slowly take them all for themselves as the years wore on. However, it is still wildly impressive that he was able to hold onto so many while he was still playing, really only losing after he decided to retire. Now, the previously mentioned records that he does have left standing are probably some of the hardest for players to overcome.
Can Anybody Catch Up to Him in Points?
Yes, actually. Kareem was able to post 38,387 total points throughout his entire career. It was a record that really hasn’t been close to being broken anytime recently but there is one player in particular that has the chance to do it, LeBron James. James is currently right behind Karl Malone on the list for third place. James has 36,638 points and is still playing like he is in his prime. If he can continue averaging about 10-20 points a game for a few more years he will be able to overtake that spot. Although, nobody else besides him is even close when it comes to active players. Carmelo Anthony is the next closest at 28,093. The legendary Michael Jordan only scored 32,292 and probably the greatest pure scorer of all-time, Kobe Bryant, scored 33,643. It’s incredibly shocking to see so many excellent scorers in league history fall short by thousands of points in their careers. If James isn’t able to pull it out and surpass Kareem’s points total, then there is a strong chance that nobody ever will in our lifetime. That perfectly describes just how impressive this record is.
Kareem Nearly Untouchable in Personal Fouls Category
Now that we covered how incredible his points record is, let’s look at his personal fouls collection. Kareem remains at the top of the list with the most personal fouls throughout his career at 4,657 in total. Karl Malone is really close with 4,578 and Artis Gilmore was right behind him at 4,529. However no one has been close to him ever since then. The only active player that is even remotely close to Kareem on the list is Dwight Howard, and he is currently in 18th place with 3,885 personal fouls and in the twilight of his career. Given how he doesn’t get many minutes anymore, he won’t be breaking this record unless he can play for another decade. Then, the only other active player besides Howard is Carmelo Anthony. Anthony, surprisingly, has 3,500 personal fouls and is in 32nd place. Even though some players like Gilmore and Malone were really close to taking this crown, they weren’t able to in the end. Since that point, nobody has fouled nearly enough to get into this category. Though some of that may be because coaches nowadays would much rather sub out their player who picks up a couple early fouls if they are integral to the team so that they don’t lose him down the stretch when the game is on the line. It makes sense, but it also means we won’t see this record taken anytime in the near future, just like the points record.
Kareem’s Impact on Winning
Let’s look at win shares here now. Kareem holds the record for the most win shares throughout his career at 273.41. To put that into further perspective, LeBron James is second on the list at 248.30 at the moment. Even Michael Jordan falls below the tow at 214.02 after retiring his final time. LeBron has a chance to end his career ahead of Kareem in this category, but his Los Angeles Lakers are currently struggling for form in a tough Western Conference. This amount of losing could easily just have him fall out of range of this record in the near future. The only other active player really close on the list is Chris Paul with win shares of 198.11. Breaking this down even further, Kareem also owns the record on the most offensive win shares in history. He has 178.92 in this category, ahead of the 172.87 that LeBron owns at this point in time. Now this is a record that James could seriously break in the near future if he can keep up this insane level of scoring that he is showing as he nears his second decade in the league. Chris Paul is once again right up there on the list as well with 144.43 offensive win shares.
What made Kareem so good at breaking records?
All in all, Kareem was extremely important to every roster that he was on and it shows in the win shares. The man could carry his team regardless of the circumstances, something similar to what we’ve seen LeBron do in the last decade or so of basketball. His longevity and ability to continually alter his game to fit his aging body, while still being able to help his team win games is legendary. All in all Kareem played 20 seasons in the NBA, avoided any major injuries and logged a ridiculous amount of regular season and playoff minutes. Not to mention he is 7ft tall and one of the most skilled players ever to lace ‘em up. Oh and the Sky Hook.