Despite a rough start to his Los Angeles Lakers tenure, it only took two seasons for the LeBron James to lead them back to the NBA Finals. Perhaps his best game as a Laker came against the Denver Nuggets on Saturday night as he scored 38 points and got a triple-double.
Any doubt that he’s still the best player in the NBA should be completely gone after another strong playoff run. However, there are still people out there who are trying to diminish LeBron’s accomplishments. Former NBA All-Star Paul Pierce is one of LeBron’s biggest detractors and took a shot at him.
“Players today are scared of LeBron,” Pierce said recently on ESPN. “My era is out of the league. We weren’t afraid of LeBron, but these guys today, he strikes fear in these guys. I can see it.”
The criticism seems off because LeBron dominated Pierce when he was still playing. Golden State Warriors star Draymond Green has had some epic battles against LeBron and had enough of Pierce’s critiques.
“Enjoy retirement man,” Green said on his Instagram story. “You still fear Bron. … Shut up already! We get it!”
LeBron is one of the most unguardable players in the NBA and Green would know a lot about that. Pierce should probably sit this one out.
LeBron Doesn’t Care Much About Winning Western Conference
It’s a pretty big achievement for a team to win their conference and make it to the NBA Finals. However, LeBron has been to the Finals nine times prior to this year. He doesn’t seem to be all that excited about winning the Western Conference for the first time in his career.
“Right now, it don’t mean s*** unless I get it done,” LeBron said after the win, per ESPN. “I got to get it done.”
The Lakers are a team that expects championships and LeBron is well aware of that. He’s been on a mission to bring the team back to the promised land.
“I’ve been fueled all year,” LeBron said. “All year. Even during the shutdown. I was still training.”
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LeBron Isn’t Trying to Compare Himself to Others
Even if he decided to retire prior to the Finals, many would argue that LeBron is the greatest player of all time. He’s taken an unorthodox path to become one of the best. He has the opportunity to be one of the few players to win titles with three different teams.
“I just want to travel my own journey, because it is my journey. I’ve appreciated everything that’s happened along the way. I mean, throughout – the ups, the downs, the ups on the court, the downs on the court, the wins and losses,” LeBron said. “But I’ve been able to, I guess as Frank Sinatra would say, ‘I did it my way.'”
He’ll likely always be compared to Michael Jordan but it sounds like he’s content with what he’s done. If he keeps playing at the level he has been, LeBron could be on his way to a couple more championships.
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