Kevin Durant passes Shaquille O'Neal, now 8th on NBA all-time scoring list

Kevin Durant continues to move up the NBA’s all-time scoring list.

Durant hit a jumper with 10:22 left in the third quarter of Wednesday night's 115-102 win against the Philadelphia 76ers at Footprint Center to pass Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal for eighth on the all-time list.

"Like I've been saying about stuff like that, just grateful to be in the category with some of the greatest," Durant said after the game. "We all know what Shaq meant to the game of basketball. To be up there with him is a major, major honor in my opinion. One of the all-time greats in sports history. I know the game is much more than scoring. It's about winning championships, doing other things, but it's cool to be up there with those names."

The 14-time All-Star and future Hall of Famer needed nine points to pass O'Neal. Durant came into the game with 28,588 points to O'Neal's 28,596.

He tied O'Neal with eight points in the first half, then reached 10 points and passed Shaq in the third.

"It's really cool," Suns guard Grayson Allen said. "Every five games, it seems like he's passing another legend, another Hall of Famer. It's just awesome to be out there. Try not to take these moments for granted playing with such a great player. It's really cool."

In his 17th NBA season, the 35-year-old Durant finished the game with 22 points to put him at 28,610.

"It's big time," Suns wing Royce O'Neale said. "He's working his way up. Every day, coming in working on his craft and getting better. In the games, he's taking everything in and getting to his spots. It's paying off, all his hard work."

After Durant passed O'Neal, the Suns played a video during a timeout of O'Neal congratulating him.

"Congratulations on passing me to become eighth on the NBA's all-time scoring list," O'Neal said. "Well deserved, but you know it doesn't stop there. Probably see you at, see if you can get to No. 1."

LeBron James is NBA's all-time leading scorer with over 40,000 points.

"I'm happy for you," O'Neal continued. "Tell your lovely mother I said hello. And congratulations brother (clapping his hands). Job well done."

Phoenix Suns forward Kevin Durant (35) makes a layup against the Philadelphia 76ers during the first half at Footprint Center in Phoenix on March 20, 2024.
Phoenix Suns forward Kevin Durant (35) makes a layup against the Philadelphia 76ers during the first half at Footprint Center in Phoenix on March 20, 2024.

This season, Durant has passed Hakeem Olajuwon, Elvin Hayes, Moses Malone, Carmelo Anthony and O’Neal.

"We're lucky to have him," Suns coach Frank Vogel said. "He's one of the greatest scorers to ever play this game and one of the greatest players to ever play this game. What he's doing for our group is, obviously the totality of his career, you can see the numbers by passing somebody like Shaq, but what he's doing for this year's team is far greater than just scoring the basketball. He's been one of our best defenders and I don't know where we'd be without him. What he's doing, playing a complete game, particularly on the defensive side."

Durant said it's hard not to look at the list to see who he was drawing closer to passing. The late, great Wilt Chamberlain is seventh with 31,419 points.

"It comes across the (social media) timeline," Durant said. "I've seen so many stats over the years. Scrolling through social media. You see that stuff. So many greats on those lists that had amazing careers. Just want to be in that same breath as those guys. Keep enjoying the game every day. I think that's the goal for me. If I happen to continue to move up the scoring board, that's cool, but the game is much more than that."

Have opinions about the current state of the Suns? Reach Suns Insider Duane Rankin at or contact him at 480-787-1240. Follow him on X, formerly Twitter, at @DuaneRankin.

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This article originally appeared on Arizona Republic: Kevin Durant passes Shaq, now 8th on NBA all-time scoring list