Sunday’s Game 6 of the NBA Finals between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Miami Heat will be the 260th of James’ playoff career, lifting him into sole possession of first place on the league’s postseason appearances list.
James is in his 17th season. After missing the playoffs in his first two seasons, he has reached the postseason 14 times in 15 years. His teams in Cleveland, Miami and now Los Angeles have gone 14-0 in first-round series with James on the roster, 11-3 in second-round series and 10-1 in the conference-final round.
He had been tied with Derek Fisher for the top spot on the playoff list with 259.
To put James’ postseason longevity into perspective, consider that 260 games is the equivalent of 3.2 full regular seasons. And out of the 4,489 players to have appeared in an NBA regular-season contest, 63% did not (or in the case of active players, have not) gotten into 260 games.
That means James’ postseason career alone has included more games than most NBA players’ entire careers.
Game 6 of the finals also would be the 55th NBA Finals game of James’ career, tying him with Jerry West for fourth-most in league history. Bill Russell played in 70, Sam Jones in 64 and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in 56.