With Andre Iguodala and Udonis Haslem retiring from the NBA, Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James becomes the oldest active player in the league.
James is set to embark on Year 21 of his Hall of Fame career and has arguably his best chance to add a fifth ring to his collection during the 2023-24 season. The King looked great physically in the preseason and appears ready to handle the burden of leading the team once again.
However, James has been ceding more and more responsibility to Anthony Davis, who seems willing to assume the mantle as the next face of the franchise. Like James, Davis had a strong preseason and he’s expected to anchor both sides of the court for Los Angeles.
James recently took some time to discuss Davis’ growth as a leader and what he means to the organization, via Michael Corvo of ClutchPoints:
“AD’s great, man. AD’s amazing. We’ve been here the longest now in this team I believe. It’s year six for me, year five for AD. We’re both co-captains and he’s just as much of a leader of this ball club as I am. I have a lot of like the guards and guys that I kind of take care of and AD got a lot of the fours and big guys that he take care of and vice versa and then we switch off cause it’s our leadership.
“AD’s everything that this franchise could ever want and more and I was definitely extremely happy and proud that he was able to get that extension too before the season started just to lock the guy in for more years. He’s one of the greatest bigs to play for this franchise, for sure.”
The Lakers have a long and rich history of legendary big men and Davis looks and feels like the next person in the lineage. The star big man has all the talent and tools to lead the team to where it wants to go, and James would surely welcome him becoming the alpha on the roster if it results in a title.
LeBron James explains what motivates him in Year 21
All eyes are on James as he chases after his fifth ring to further cement his case as the greatest player of all time. There isn’t anything left for the superstar to accomplish, but he explained that remains motivated to be as great as he possibly can be and win at the highest levels.
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