‘Here to Work’: Lakers’ LeBron James Rubbishes Common Narrative After Disappointing Loss Over Wizards

Published 02/23/2021, 5:00 AM EST
Feb 20, 2021; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) during the closing second of the Lakers 96-94 loss to the Miami Heat at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports


The Los Angeles Lakers are enduring a bad run of games. With a loss against the Wizards last night, they have just one win in their last five games now. The absence of Anthony Davis is taking a toll on the team, especially LeBron James, who has been overworked in this period.

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In his last nine games, LeBron is averaging 38 minutes per game, which includes four games of 40+ minutes. He played 43 minutes tonight in yet another overtime game for the Lakers. Fans are worried because they would want to see LeBron well rested before the playoffs. He is 36 now and despite him being a supreme athlete; the concerns are valid.

Feb 22, 2021; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) moves the ball against Washington Wizards forward Rui Hachimura (8) during the second half at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

But LeBron himself isn’t worried about resting. During the post-game interview last night, he said, “This whole narrative of (I) need more rest… I don’t talk about it. I don’t believe in it. We all need more rest, shit. But I’m here to work, to punch my clock in and be available to my teammates.”

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This is an elite mentality from the four-time NBA champion, and his drive to help his team is second to none.

How long can LeBron James and the Lakers survive without Anthony Davis?

ESPN’s Rachel Nichols pointed out how LeBron is averaging the most minutes in the NBA since Davis got injured. He was 50th in the league prior to the injury, and he jumped all the way to first in this span. He also went from having the 10th most touches per game to third-most in the league.

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This shows how the Lakers are overdependent on their superstar. While he has delivered on most occasions, the supporting cast has been unable to rally behind him. The success of the other top teams in the league like the Nets, Jazz, and Clippers is influenced by the performance of their role players. The Lakers are behind them because they fall short on this front.

Feb 20, 2021; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Lakers injured forward Anthony Davis (left) talks to Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) during the second half against the Miami Heat at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

There is no doubt the absence of Dennis Schroder and AD is the prime reason behind their form. But the other role players need to be more consistent as the Lakers aim to go back to back.

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Aaron Mathew

1650 articles

Aaron Mathew is a sports analyst at EssentiallySports. A graduate in Mass Media from Xavier’s College, Aaron has been a part of EssentiallySports since May 2020 where he covers both NBA and NCAA basketball news, and has also covered NBA 2K. In the past, Aaron has worked at the Sports Desk of Mumbai Mirror.

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