How long has Lebron been in the NBA? Looking at LBJ’s longevity

How long has Lebron been in the NBA? Looking at LBJ’s longevity

Grace Waruguru
updated at July 28, 2023 at 8:23 AM

How long has LeBron James been in the NBA? The 6''8 American athlete is a legend in his own right, making and breaking records throughout his career, earning him global recognition. LBJ, as many have called him, has had one of the most consistent careers, undoubtedly contributing to his personal and professional success. Read on as we take a deep dive into his career longevity and achievements.

How long has LeBron been in the NBA
LeBron James is the top-scorer in the NBA. Photo: Kevin Mazur
Source: Getty Images

With over 47,000 career points, LeBron is now NBA's top-scorer. His career has not been short of challenges, but his ability to overcome each one and keep winning has seen him rise to the top with numerous titles to his name.

LeBron James profile summary

Full name

LeBron Raymone James Sr


38 years old (As of 2023)


The King, King James, LBJ

Date of birth

December 30, 1984

Zodiac sign


Place of birth

Akron, Ohio




African - American




Anthony McClelland


Gloria Marie James

Marital status



Savannah Brinson James


Bronny James Jr, Bryce Maximus James, Zhuri James


6 feet, 8 inches



Hair colour


Eye colour

Dark brown


St. Vincent-St. Mary High School


Professional basketball player


Power forward, small forward

Net worth

$1 billion

Social media presence

Instagram, Twitter

How old is LeBron?

NBA All-Star LeBron James (age 38 years old as of 2023) was born in Akron, Ohio, on December 30, 1984. He was an only child born to Anthony McClelland and Gloria Marie James. His mother raised him single-handedly, encountering several challenges to make ends meet.

How long has LeBron James been playing in the NBA
LeBron James joined the NBA in 2003. Photo: Hector Vivas
Source: Getty Images

When did Lebron James start playing basketball?

King James, as he is popularly known, was introduced to basketball by Frank Walker, a local youth football coach who hosted him in his earlier years. LeBron started playing basketball in the fifth grade under the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU).

His team was successful and gained national recognition. Together with three teammates, James led his crew to form the ''Fab Four'' who promised to attend high school together. They joined St Vincent - St. Mary High School, a private Ohio-based Catholic school.

High school career

How long has LeBron James been in the NBA league
LeBron James was signed by the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2003 and played with them for 7 seasons. Photo: Alberto E. Rodriguez
Source: Getty Images

LeBron James' outstanding basketball skills set him at the top of his high school team. The athlete averaged 21 points and 6 rebounds per game as a freshman. In his second year, he made history by becoming the first sophomore to be named Ohio Mr Basketball and be selected to the USA Today All-USA First Team.

In his junior year, LeBron was the first athlete to be named male basketball Gatorade National Player of the Year. Towards the end of his junior year, his team lost the Division II championship game. James unsuccessfully petitioned the NBA to change its eligibility criteria so he could join the 2002 draft. So, when did LeBron join the NBA?

Which year was LeBron James drafted into the NBA?

In his senior year, James averaged 31.6 points, 9.6 rebounds, 4.6 assists, and 3.4 steals per game. Additionally, he was named Ohio Mr Basketball and selected to the USA Today All-USA First Team for the third consecutive year. In 2003, King James' NBA career debut came after graduating from high school.

Which team drafted LeBron James? The power forward was the first overall pick by the Cleveland Cavaliers. In his first regular season, James scored 25 points, scoring the most by a prep-to-pro player in his debut NBA performance. He played with the 'Cavs' for seven years before transitioning to Miami Heat in 2010.

How long has LeBron James been playing in the NBA?

When did LeBron James start playing basketball
LeBron is married to Savannah James, and they have three children; Bronny James (R), Zhuri James (C), and Bryce James (L). Photo: Kevin Mazur
Source: Getty Images

After competing with his debut NBA franchise, the American player became a free agent in July 2010 before joining Miami Heat. His successes in the team include the Most Valuable Player Award in 2020, 2012, and 2013. King James played with Miami Heat for four years before returning to his first love, the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2014.

The three made a brilliant trio with Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving. Unfortunately, his second stint with the franchise was disrupted by several injuries. He spent four years with the Cavaliers and joined the Los Angeles Lakers in 2018.

How long has Lebron been with the Lakers?

James signed with the Los Angeles Lakers, his current team, in July 2018. He has competed with the team for six seasons and won his fourth NBA championship with them in 2020. In the same year, King James continued to make history by becoming the first player in NBA history to score 10 points or more in 1,000 consecutive games. He signed a two-year contract extension in 2022.

When did Lebron win his first NBA?

In 2012, LeBron James bagged his first NBA championship while playing with Miami Heat. The team defeated Oklahoma City Thunder in five games to claim the title.

Will LeBron James retire soon?

Which team drafted Lebron James
LeBron James is a small forward and power forward for the Los Angeles Lakers. Photo: Christopher Polk
Source: Getty Images

LeBron James' career is thriving, and he is seemingly not yet done with the wins. In a recent interview, the 38-year-old stated,

I don't care how many more points I score," said James. "Or what I can or can't do on the floor. The real question for me is: Can I play without cheating this game? The day that I can't give the game everything on the floor is the day I'll be done. Lucky for you guys, the day is not today."

How long has LeBron James been in the NBA league?

As of 2023, the basketball legend has been in the league for 20 years. With his zeal and energy for the game, the athlete is far from done, and fans can expect to see more of the legend in upcoming seasons.

READ ALSO: Comparing Steph Curry Vs LeBron James

Sports Brief published an article comparing two legendary basketball players, Steph Curry and LeBron James. While some fans have felt that there s no basis to compare these players, others have felt that their achievements should be weighed to determine the better one. How do the two players compare?

Steph Curry's NBA debut was in 2009, while LeBron's was in 2003, six years earlier. Both sportsmen play the small forward and power forward positions. Check out the above article for a comprehensive comparison of the two athletes and their career milestones.

Grace Waruguru photo
Grace Waruguru
Grace has over 4 years of experience in article writing and digital media content creation for various local and global brands. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Communication (Public Relations) from Daystar University, Kenya.
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