LeBron James has recently said the Los Angeles Lakers’ start of the 2021-22 season ranks high on the list of his career’s greatest challenges.
James missed nearly half of the current campaign’s fixtures, disrupting the Lakers’ efforts to work out their identity with all the new players on the roster. First, two injuries ruled out the 36-year-old forward for 10 games in total.
Then, the Year 19 veteran missed further two games due to a suspension and a positive coronavirus (COVID-19) test result.
James, who has yet to play in four consecutive games this season, admitted the many breaks he had to take off the floor have impacted his performance this year.
“I feel like obviously before going to Sacramento I was getting into a really, really good rhythm,” he said.
“Offensively, defensively as a team, we were playing well. Those guys did a hell of a job-winning that game, but for me, it’s been very frustrating either dealing with the groin or the abdomen and then having to deal with the false positive that knocked me out a game and then knocked me off the floor and not being able to keep my rhythm.
“It’s been a very challenging year to start going through the season for myself, but only good things ahead.”
James spent two days in isolation ahead of the 119-115 loss to the L.A. Clippers, unable to do anything besides staying at home and waiting for clearance following two negative coronavirus test results. The forward said that the morning before the Friday game “was the first time I got to actually to touch a basketball” since the victory over the Detroit Pistons on Sunday.
James then admitted he wasn’t satisfied with his game on the defensive end in the clash with the Clippers.
James describes frustration with NBA’s health and safety protocols
James entered the NBA’s health and safety protocols after receiving conflicting coronavirus test results earlier this week. The Lakers’ superstar claimed he tested negative first, then his second test came back positive, placing him under quarantine.
James said the process led to many anger-fueling inconveniences for the four-time NBA champion and his family.
“It was straight isolation and you’ve been put into protocol and that’s the part that kind of angered me,” he said. “And I had to figure out a way to get home from Sacramento by myself.
“They wouldn’t allow anyone to travel with me. No security, no anything when I traveled back from Sacramento and I had to put my kids in isolation for the time being and put people in my household in isolation for the time being, so it was just a big-time inconvenience. That was the anger part.”
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