LeBron James wants to break 'stereotype' around ageing stars after passing Larry Bird
LeBron James wants to break new ground as an ageing NBA star after reaching another impressive career milestone.
Two weeks before his 33rd birthday, the Cleveland Cavaliers icon recorded his 60th career triple-double in his side's 109-100 home win over the Utah Jazz on Saturday.
James' 29 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists gave him a fifth triple-double of the season and third in his last four games, as well as taking him to sixth on the all-time list, above Boston Celtics legend Larry Bird.
As his recent exploits prompt talk of a fifth MVP award, James hopes he is changing the narrative and extending the perceived prime of basketball stars.
"Team success is always the number one, but along the way if you're able accomplish some individual awards, individual achievements, it would mean a lot," James said of the MVP talk, via ESPN.
"I feel good. This is my 15th year, but this is one of the best years I've had as far as how I feel, and I want to continue that. I want to kind of try to break the mould for the next generation. So just take the narrative out of, 'OK, you're past your prime when you get [to] 31, or you're past your prime in your 12th year in the league', or whatever the case may be.
"Hopefully I can break the mould, so when the next guy comes, he can still get $200 or $300million and be 33 years old. I'm serious. You guys are laughing, I'm serious.
"This is the mould I'm trying to break. It's not just about me, it's for the next crew, as well. I'll be 33 in 15 days. This is my 15th season, and this is the best I've felt in my career. I want it all.
"I want to break the mould of guys, of the stereotype of this prime thing. I know what I'm doing has not been done a lot in the history of the game, even at my age. And you look at the minutes I've played and the consecutive Finals I've been a part of, just the toll on my body, it hasn't been done."
After passing Bird's milestone, James was humbled to be compared alongside the game's legends.
He added: "It's not even when I pass them. It's more when I'm just mentioned in the same breath as them.
"I'm a historian of the game. I understand who set the standard for me to be here, who travelled the road long before I got here to make it possible for myself, so it's just humbling any time I'm mentioned with any of the greats."