LeBron James Ready to Make Sacrifices if the Lakers Want Him in Different Roles

Published 12/15/2020, 11:30 PM EST
Dec 13, 2020; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward Anthony Davis (3) and forward LeBron James (23) watch game action against the Los Angeles Clippers during the first half at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports


Roger Federer mostly skips the clay season, and Rafa cares less about stretching too much on the grass. When athletes age, their team management and they themselves become choosy. When it comes to the world of basketball, LeBron James is aging and the last thing the Lakers would want is for him to get injured and sit out, so some strategy needs to be in place.

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The Lakers’ second team recently proved against the Clippers in the preseason that they can win games against the very best. So one strategy can be to not allow Bron to wear himself out during the regular-season games and keep him fresh for the post-season. But what else can be expected of him?

LeBron James on his role in the 2020-21 season

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Lakers forwards Anthony Davis and LeBron James watch game action against the Los Angeles Clippers during the second half at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

In a recent interview, the soon-to-be 36-YO LeBron James expressed, “If it presents for me to be the primary ball-handler and also try to lead the league in assists,  I can (take that) responsibility … if our team doesn’t need that, that’s absolutely fine as well.”

These words can only be of a true team player who can put his body on the line to do justice to what has been asked. In the last season, Bron recorded the highest assist average in his entire career. He averaged 10.2 assists in the season while also consistently scoring 25+ points per game. As if this was not crazy enough, he averaged a double-double in points and rebounds in the playoffs 2020.

But one can’t expect Bron to continue doing this every year, and Frank Vogel must have something in mind to most effectively put the 4-time NBA Champion to work.

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The Lakers are now much stronger than the previous season

One reason why Bron had to stretch himself so much in the last season was because of the Lakers’ dependency on him. For sure, he had a promise to deliver and hence was hungrier, but the factors are different now. The Lakers have a star point guard in Dennis Schroder and a decent center player in Marc Gasol, among others. 

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Bron on the other hand is a point guard himself in a forward’s body. He has previously played with star PGs like Kyrie Irving and has always kept the ball. Will the Bron look for catch-and-shoot players around him or take some other role? He knows the Lakers now possess more playmakers, and that can change the dynamics.

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Sourabh Singh

1258 articles

Sourabh Singh is an NBA sports analyst for EssentiallySports, who has been working with the site since May 2020. Prior to this, he functioned as Managing Editor at WittyFeed, followed by a stint at Decathlon. The Sports Management graduate leads an active lifestyle, veering to the mountains for off-trail adventures.

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