NBA wrap: LeBron James moves into 5th on scoring list; 76ers fall in Jimmy Butler's debut

LeBron James is moving on up. The Lakers forward scored 44 points on 13-of-19 shooting while adding 10 rebounds and nine assists in a 126-117 win over the Trail Blazers on Wednesday, but it was what he did with his 39th point that mattered.

With an and-one in the fourth quarter, James scored his 39th point of the game and 31,420th of his career, passing Wilt Chamberlain for fifth place on the all-time scoring list.

The Lakers won their fourth game in a row Wednesday behind James’ historic night.

Meanwhile, Jimmy Butler is a very good player, he just wasn’t good enough Wednesday to prevent the 76ers from losing in his debut with the team.

Philadelphia fell to the Magic 111-106 as it blew an 11-point lead at the end of the third quarter in the loss. Orlando went on a 21-0 run in the fourth quarter which, according to ESPN, is the second largest unanswered run by a team this season.

Butler finished with 14 points on 6-of-12 shooting in the loss and just six points after the first quarter. Joel Embiid tallied his first career triple-double in the game, but he had just 19 points on 6-of-20 shooting to go with 13 rebounds and 10 assists. He also was uncharacteristically denied at the rim.

On the other hand, in Minnesota, the Timberwolves moved to 2-0 since Butler was traded to the 76ers.

Karl-Anthony Towns scored 20 points and added 10 rebounds in the first half alone as Minnesota took down the Pelicans 107-100. He finished with 25 points and 16 rebounds.

E’Twaun Moore had a game-high 31 points on 13-of-23 shooting in the loss for the Pelicans.

Studs of the Night

Thunder forward Paul George scored 35 points on 13-of-22 shooting while adding seven rebounds, five assists and two steals in a 128-103 win over the Knicks.

Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo had a game-high 31 points to go with nine rebounds and four assists, but Marc Gasol finished with 29 points and five rebounds while going 6 for 12 from 3-point range in the Grizzlies’ 116-113 win over Milwaukee.

Pistons forward Blake Griffin had 30 points and 12 rebounds as Detroit got new head coach Dwane Casey some revenge over the Raptors in a 106-104 win. It was Casey’s first matchup against the team that fired him this offseason.

It was Reggie Bullock, though, who made Casey’s day with a game-winning shot at the buzzer.

Dud of the Night

Jazz forward Jae Crowder went 2-of-12 shooting, including 1 of 9 from 3-point range, in a lopsided 118-68 loss to the Mavericks.


Heat guard Rodney McGruder looked like a young Dwyane Wade with this miraculous layup. Miami defeated the Nets 120-107.

What’s Next

Warriors (12-3) at Rockets (6-7) 8 p.m. ET — It’s a rematch of the Western Conference finals from last season and both teams come in with odd situations. Steph Curry is out for Golden State while Draymond Green will presumably be back from suspension after he got into it with Kevin Durant in a loss to the Clippers on Monday. The Rockets, meanwhile, are still trying to find their footing this season, but they do come into the game having won five of their last seven games.