There are many different exercises that all those involved in the game of basketball participate in at times. Whether it is choosing a Mount Rushmore, an all-time starting 5, or anything else, players and fans alike can have a good time taking part in these things. And without fail, members of the Los Angeles Lakers are basically guaranteed to be part of these groups.
The history of the Lakers is so great that many of the greatest players of all time have put on that purple and gold. Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Jerry West, Kobe Bryant, Shaquille O’Neal and Wilt Chamberlain could all be considered top-10 players. And while Golden State Warriors superstar Stephen Curry added a couple to his all-time starting 5, he left a couple of big names off as well.
Curry was asked for an all-time starting 5 surrounding himself, and the Warriors star left off both LeBron James and Kobe Bryant, via Sports Illustrated:
— Sports Illustrated (@SInow) December 8, 2022
In fairness to Curry, this is a very good lineup that covers all bases. Everyone can score obviously, but Dirk Nowitzki provides extra shooting along with Curry, while Johnson is another playmaker, O’Neal will dominate the block and obviously Michael Jordan is a no-brainer.
But leaving James off is definitely something that will raise some eyebrows, especially considering the history between the two. LeBron and Curry met four consecutive years in the NBA Finals from 2015 through 2018 and that surely will breed at least some sort of rivalry even though there has never been any serious issue between the two. In fact, the Lakers star has said that he would love to play with Curry one day.
Whether or not that actually played any sort of role in this case, only Curry will know the truth. Kobe being left off isn’t quite as surprising considering Curry went with Magic and Jordan. Having both Kobe and Jordan on the same team is rarely the choice as they are extremely similar players and Curry went with the player whom many consider the greatest of all-time.
But the other player often in those conversations is James so that exclusion could be something LeBron tucks away for a bit of extra motivation the next time the Lakers and Warriors meet.
LeBron James says sole focus is winning championships
In his 20th NBA season, it could be forgiven if James’ overall performance began to tail off some. But the Lakers star continues to defy all logic and he insists his focus is solely on winning championships.
LeBron compared himself to football star Tom Brady in their ability to continue to perform at a high level at an advanced age while noting that he is ‘out there’ for championships. Needless to say, as long as LeBron continues to produce like this, his expectation is to win.
Have you subscribed to our YouTube channel? It’s the best way to watch player interviews, exclusive coverage from events, participate in live shows, and more!