(CNN)There are few certainties in sport, but LeBron James breaking the NBA's all-time scoring record is one of them. It is now a question of when, not if, this remarkable record chase will be achieved.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar has held the points record for nearly 39 years, the Lakers great overtaking Wilt Chamberlain on April 5, 1984 -- before James was even born.
As James himself has said, surpassing 38,387 points would be one of sport's great achievements. It is a record that has changed hands once since 1966, which makes his soon-to-be feat even more astonishing. Whatever mark James sets, it may never fall again. Not in our lifetimes, at least.
"I think it's one of the greatest records in sports in general," James said Thursday. "I think it's up there with the home run record in baseball.
"It's one of those records that you just don't ever see or think that would be broken."
James is now 63 points behind Abdul-Jabbar's mark, with his career points total currently at 38,325, and could surpass the long-standing record within the week.
Could he do it against the Pelicans on Saturday? It is unlikely. James has never scored 63 points in a game. His highest game total was 61 in 2014 when he was a Miami Heat player, which means to break or tie the record on Saturday he will need a career-high score.