LeBron James Sounds Off on His Favorite Moment Since Joining Lakers

Lakers stars LeBron James and Anthony Davis

Getty Lakers stars LeBron James and Anthony Davis

LeBron James joined the Los Angeles Lakers in the summer of 2018 as an unrestricted free agent. The King signed a four-year, $153.5 million deal and his arrival to Los Angeles made the Lakers relevant again.

Unfortunately, there have been more downs than ups for James since he joined the Lakers. Los Angeles has missed the playoffs twice and lost in the first round of the postseason during the LeBron era.

However, the 2019-20 season was magical for James and Co. The purple and gold won the 2020 championship over the Miami Heat in six games at the Walt Disney World bubble. They defeated the Portland Trail Blazers, Houston Rockets and Denver Nuggets in the Western Conference playoffs and James admitted on May 16 that Anthony Davis’ game-winner against the Nuggets in Game 2 is his favorite moment since joining the Lakers.

The Lakers defeated the Nuggets in five games in the 2020 Western Conference Finals. Davis hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer in Game 2 to give Los Angeles a 105-103 win.

Davis and James were a lethal duo in the 2020 playoffs and the two superstars helped the Lakers capture championship No. 17 in franchise history.

Lakers Went 16-5 in 2020 Playoffs

The Lakers went 16-5 in the 2020 playoffs. They beat the Blazers 4-1, the Rockets 4-1, the Nuggets 4-1 and the Heat 4-2.

James averaged 27.6 points, 10.8 rebounds and 8.8 assists while shooting 56.0% from the field, 37.0% from beyond the arc and 72.0% from the free-throw line during the 2020 playoffs. Meanwhile, Davis put up 27.7 points, 9.7 rebounds and 1.4 blocks per game while shooting 57.1% from the floor, 38.3% from the 3-point line and 83.2% from the charity stripe.

James won his fourth Finals MVP award by averaging 29.8 points, 11.8 rebounds and 8.5 assists against the Heat in the 2020 Finals. The Akron Hammer became the first player in NBA history to win three Finals MVPs with three different teams.

Davis was phenomenal versus the Heat as well. The Chicago native averaged 25.0 points, 10.7 rebounds and 2.0 blocks and finally captured his first NBA title.

Both James and Davis signed new contracts with the Lakers in December 2020. The former signed a two-year, $85.6 million extension, while the latter agreed to a five-year, $189.9 million deal. The Lakers had the best preseason odds to win the championship in 2020-21, but they won only 42 games in the regular season since James missed 27 contests and Davis missed 36.

The Lakers lost to the Phoenix Suns in the first round of the 2021 playoffs in six games. They took a 2-1 lead after winning Game 3. However, Davis suffered a groin injury in Game 4 and the series completely changed. The Suns won Games 4, 5 and 6, eliminating the Lakers and handing James his first first-round exit.

Los Angeles retooled in the summer of 2021. The franchise acquired Russell Westbrook from the Washington Wizards and signed Carmelo Anthony, Malik Monk, Dwight Howard, Kent Bazemore, Avery Bradley, DeAndre Jordan, Trevor Ariza, Wayne Ellington and Kendrick Nunn in free agency. The Lakers had the second-best preseason odds to win the 2022 title. However, they were a walking disaster this season.

Lakers Were a Mess All Season

The Lakers were a mess all season. They won only 33 games and missed the playoffs. Frank Vogel was fired as head coach on April 11 and Westbrook was such a poor fit next to James and Davis that he was benched multiple times by Vogel and booed at home games.

James had an incredible 2021-22 season. He averaged 30.3 points, 8.2 rebounds and 6.2 assists and scored 50 points twice. However, not even James’ brilliance was enough to save the Lakers, who gave up 115.1 points per game.

James will play for his third head coach since joining the Lakers in 2018. The four-time MVP becomes an unrestricted free agent in the summer of 2023 if he doesn’t sign an extension this offseason.

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