LeBron James erupts for 46 in return to Cleveland

James punctuates his homecoming with a masterful 4th quarter, scoring 21 of his season-high 46 points.

NBA.com Staff

Happy homecoming: LeBron James finishes with 46 points, eight rebounds and six assists in his return to Cleveland.

You knew it was going to be a special night when LeBron James dusted off his signature pregame chalk toss in his return to Cleveland.

What followed was arguably James’ most impressive game since joining the Lakers.

James started fast with 17 points in the first quarter and went on tear in the fourth on his former home court, scoring 23 of his 46 points to keep the Los Angeles Lakers unbeaten on the road with a 115-108 victory over the Cavaliers.

James’ season-high 46 came on 19-of-26 shooting from the field, including 7-of-11 from beyond the arc. He also added eight rebounds, six assists, two blocks and two steals.

 

 

With the game in doubt, James made 9 of 10 shots over the final 12 minutes, posing to hold his form after draining a 34-footer from the Cavs’ logo as the shot clock expired to put the Lakers ahead 103-98.

James followed that with a step-back 3 and then buried a fadeaway turn-around jumper in the corner before shaking his head at Cleveland’s bench.

Indeed, James’ first game in Ohio in more than two years could not have gone much better.

“Home cooking,” said James, who got a meal made by his mom, Gloria. “It felt good to be back in my haven.”

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Most points in a game by player aged 36 or older

60 — Kobe Bryant (37 years, 234 days)
51 — Michael Jordan (38 years, 314 days)
51 — Jamal Crawford (39 years, 20 days)
46 — Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (38 years, 296 days)
46 — LeBron James (36 years, 26 days)

Oldest players to score 45+ pts on 70+% FG

Feb. 6, 1986 — Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (38 years, 296 days)
Feb. 27, 2009 — Shaquille O’Neal (36 years, 358 days)
Jan. 25, 2021 — LeBron James (36 years, 26 days)

Oldest players to score 45+ pts in a road game

April. 9, 2019 — Jamal Crawford (39 years, 20 days)
Feb. 6, 1986 — Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (38 years, 296 days)
Jan. 25, 2021 — LeBron James (36 years, 26 days)

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