There were major questions about how effective LeBron James could be heading into the 2019-20 season as he was entering Year 17 and coming off a groin injury that robbed him of the second half of his inaugural season with the Los Angeles Lakers.
James quickly put those concerns to bed when the regular season kicked off as he looked rejuvenated on the court. Prior to the season’s hiatus, he was averaging a career-best 10.6 assists while also putting up nearly 26 points and eight rebounds a game.
LeBron also looked much more engaged and active on the defensive end, playing excellent on and off ball defense and quarterbacking the defense on numerous occasions. James’ efforts helped vault the Lakers all the way to the top of the Western Conference and they are now in good position to walk into the 2020 NBA Playoffs as the No. 1 seed.
Although Giannis Antetokounmpo may hang onto the 2020 NBA MVP Award, James made a solid case for it in the 60 games he has appeared in so far. Meanwhile, he did earn another recognition, from the BET Awards, as Sportsman of the Year and James reacted via his Twitter:
Thank you! Honored! 🙏🏾✊🏾💪🏾♥️👑 https://t.co/96b4spS9GK
— LeBron James (@KingJames) June 29, 2020
The BET Awards were established back in 2001 in an effort to highlight and honor African-Americans in several different categories ranging from movies, television, and music. The sports category has two sections for both a male and female athlete and James walked away as the male winner, while Simone Biles was the female winner.
The list of nominees for Sportsman of the Year included Kawhi Leonard, Antetokounmpo and Stephen Curry, a formidable list given what each superstar brings to the table. This is James’ seventh time winning the award, with his first one coming back in 2004.
It is a prestigious honor for James, but the goal for him and the Lakers has always been a championship and the restart in Orlando will give them an opportunity to do just that. Although there are mixed feelings from numerous players about the return of the season, the plan appears set to go through barring any unforeseen events or changes in the coming weeks.
Each team will be playing eight regular season games for seeding purposes, but because of Los Angeles’ lead in the standings they will likely be able to use the games as tune ups for the playoffs.
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