For the second straight game LeBron James shook off a slow start to dominate down the stretch and lead the Los Angeles Lakers to a road win over the Memphis Grizzlies.
In the Lakers’ latest victory, James scored 21 of his 26 points in the second half and nearly notched a second triple-double in the past three games. So far in his 18th NBA season, LeBron is averaging 23.9 points, 8.8 rebounds, and 7.4 assists in 32.4 minutes per game.
James leads the Lakers in scoring and assists while ranking second on the team in rebounding, steals and minutes. The playing time may come as a surprise to many who expected him to ease into the new campaign after such a short offseason.
One person who isn’t surprised at what James is doing is his superstar teammate Anthony Davis. “It’s just a testament to the type of player that he is,” Davis said following the victory over the Grizzlies.
“He puts in the work at practice, shootaround, pregame. He’s constantly working on his body to get his body right to go out there and put up those type of numbers from rebounds to assists to scoring, and also things that don’t show up in the stat sheet.”
James has become a master at picking his spots in the game where he truly takes over and that has been on display this season. Though his minutes are at a career low, his impact hasn’t lessened in any way and Davis believes things are getting easier for the basketball legend.
“It’s good to be a witness of that in my second year (as teammates). It surprises no one on this team,” Davis said. “He’s been doing this for a long time, and it seems like it’s getting easier for him.”
LeBron remains a physical force, but his best asset is probably his outstanding basketball mind and that manifests in a number of different ways on the court.
James has picked up every trick in the book over his time in the league, so now in Year 18 things are coming easier despite being at an age where a normal being would be slowing down.
LeBron focused on keeping mind ‘sharp’
James didn’t have the normal time to recover in the offseason as he normally would, which is a main reason why some expected him to sit out games early in the season while he gets into peak shape. But for James, the most important thing is keeping his mind sharp.
“For me, it’s always about having my mind and my body fresh. If my mind is sharp, then I can go out and do whatever I need to on the floor. If it’s not, then it hurts not only myself but our team,” he said.
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