From the too-much-information file, LeBron James offered a small glimpse of what life has been like for him in the bubble, even now that his family, including wife Savannah Brinson, has been able to join him. When it comes to marital bliss, James indicated—subtly, to his credit—after the Lakers’ big Game 3 win over the Rockets that his husbandly duties will have to wait, even if his wife does not much like it.
Asked how he maintains his conditioning in this, his 17th season—an especially odd season being finished on the Disney World campus—James said he is focused on his body. And only his body.
“I won’t tell you exactly what I do because I’d be giving my opponents my ingredients,” James said at his postgame press conference before cracking a wide smile. “But let’s just say my wife is not enjoying what I do on a daily basis inside the bubble, getting ready for a game. Let’s just say that.”
No extracurricular activity, he asserted.
“A lot of time, a lot of time on my body,” James said, still grinning.
LeBron James Dominated Rockets in Game 3
Interpret that how you wish but, fact is, James was outstanding in Game 3, following up a dominant performance in Game 2. James had 28 points, 11 rebounds, 9 assists and 4 steals in that game and followed that up on Tuesday with 36 points, 7 rebounds, 5 assists and 4 blocks, the most he has had all season.
The blocked shots were a surprise and James was asked how he has been able to maintain that level of athleticism here at age 35.
“I just try to take care of my body, commit to the film, put myself in the right position,” he said. ‘Understanding plays that happen before they happen sometimes, try not to be late. But like I said, throughout the day, prepare my mind, prepare for whatever happens.”
That has not been easy, though, in the NBA’s bubble environment, where the schedule, the food, and the equipment available to James in normal circumstances has been significantly altered. He has been able to roll with the changes, though.
“There’s things that being here in the bubble, it’s uncontrollable,” James said. “You can’t control it. From a rhythm standpoint, I am where I want to be and I want to continue that. It’s all about playing basketball efficiently, being effective out on the floor in my minutes and doing whatever it takes to help our team win.”
LeBron James: All-Time Leader in NBA Playoff Wins
James also passed ex-Laker Derek Fisher for the all-time lead in total playoff wins, with 162. He is now within 12 games of Fisher for the all-time record of total playoff games played and, if the Lakers advance past Houston and eventually reach the NBA Finals, he is likely to pass him this season.
After the win, James also heaped praise on the incredible performance of Rajon Rondo, who, at age 34, logged 21 points and 9 assists off the bench for the Lakers. James said he and Rondo, as longtime veterans of the NBA who are not ready to be put out to pasture, share a kinship and a satisfaction over a good playoff performance that only a fellow old guy can understand.
As James put it:
One, we don’t know how many more opportunities we are going to get at this level. Two, our league kind of tries to weed guys like us in our later years out of the league, you see it a lot, guys in their 30s, mid-30s, they try to stray away from the vets. We take it as a little pride as well.
Three, some people are built for this moment and some people are not. I think that when you’ve been in the process and you’ve been building your mind and your body and your soul for the postseason, no matter the circumstances, no matter the environment, then you’re able to rise.
At the end of the day, it’s that pride factor understanding that our league has tried to get away from the vets and then just living in the moment. You don’t have the many opportunities to be a part of a great team, to be a part of great teammates. You don’t know, you don’t know what can happen from year-to-year so you just try to make the most of it.