"Only one to catch LeBron James": Kevin Garnett has high praise for Luka Doncic ahead of Game 3 vs Celtics

NBA: Dallas Mavericks at Los Angeles Lakers
Can Luka Doncic surpass LeBron James? (Photo: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports)

It's only been a year since LeBron James surpassed Kareem Abdul-Jabbar to become the NBA's all-time leading scorer, but Kevin Garnett believes Luka Doncic is already on track to challenge that record.

In an episode of the All the Smoke podcast, Garnett expressed his belief that Luka Doncic is positioned to be the only player capable of catching James' scoring record.

"Listen, Luka is set up to be the only n***a to catch [LeBron James], don't nobody wanna say that s**t," Garnett said.

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Luka Doncic, now in his sixth NBA season, has already been named to the All-NBA First Team five times.

“Luka is averaging 30+ on one leg, drinking beer and having fun doing God who knows what else,” Garnett said.

Doncic entered the league with averages of 21.2 points, 7.8 rebounds and 6.0 assists per game, earning the Rookie of the Year award.

In the following three seasons, he averaged 28.8, 27.7 and 28.5 points per game, before surpassing the 30-point mark, averaging 32.4 points in 2022-23 and 33.9 this season.

So far, he has accumulated 11,470 points, 3,317 assists and 3,472 rebounds in five seasons.

LeBron James has amassed 40,474 points by the end of his 21st NBA season.

Comparing Luka Doncic and LeBron James’ first five years in the league

In his first five NBA seasons, LeBron James amassed 10,689 points, 2,694 rebounds, 2,572 assists, 693 steals and 312 blocks. Comparatively, Luka Doncic's first five years have seen him compile 11,470 points, 3,317 assists and 3,472 rebounds, all surpassing LeBron's figures.

However, Doncic falls short defensively with 467 steals and 182 blocks.

Doncic has a significant advantage in triple-doubles, recording 77, compared to LeBron's 17 in his first five seasons. Over 11 seasons with the Cavaliers, LeBron had 64 triple-doubles.

LeBron missed the playoffs in his first two years. In his third year, his fourth-seeded Cavaliers beat the fifth-seeded Washington Wizards in the first round but lost to the top-seeded Pistons in seven games in the second round.

He reached the finals the following season but was swept by the San Antonio Spurs and exited in the second round the next season, defeated by the top-seeded Boston Celtics.

Doncic didn't make the playoffs in his rookie season. In his second year, he reached the playoffs but was eliminated in the first round by the LA Clippers, a fate he repeated the following year.

He advanced to the Western Conference finals in his fourth year but lost to the Golden State Warriors in five games.

This year, his Mavericks have reached the NBA Finals but are currently trailing the Celtics, 0-2.

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Edited by John Ezekiel Hirro
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