When this season began, Ray Allen was the NBA’s all-time leader in three-pointers, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar had the record for combined regular season and playoff points, and Don Nelson was the winningest coach in league history.
Stephen Curry passed Allen. LeBron James passed Abdul-Jabbar (although the big record, regular season points only, comes next season). And now Gregg Popovich has not only won his 1,336th career game to pass Nelson, the Indiana-but-not-yet-Naismith Hall of Famer managed to find an actual good use for NFTs.
The sales of 1,336 commemorative non-fungible tokens will raise money for the San Antonio Food Bank, a favorite charity of Popovich’s. Could everyone just cut a check directly to the food bank instead? Yes, but if people are going to spend money to get their hands on literally nothing but the keyboard they already own to type in an address for a URL that will display a series of coded pixels… that money might as well go to a food bank instead of some tech bro.
In the real world, where there are basketball standings, Popovich and the Spurs edged a little closer to the play-in tournament with their 104-102 win over the Jazz. San Antonio is now just a game behind 10th-place New Orleans, which lost its fourth straight game, 142-120 at home to the Hornets.
The Pelicans’ loss allowed the Lakers to move two and a half games clear of Anthony Davis’ old team, as Los Angeles actually managed to win a game, 122-109, over the Wizards. And all it took was James getting 50 points closer to Abdul-Jabbar’s record. He’s now only 1,594 points behind the all-time mark, and only 135 behind Karl Malone for second place.
It’s just more history ahead in a year that’s already been full of it.