LeBron James is closing in on one of the most iconic records in professional sports, and the current holder is 100 percent in his corner.
Retired basketball legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar spoke this week with veteran NBA writer Marc Stein. In the interview, Abdul-Jabbar said that he is rooting for James to break his all-time record for points scored.
“I’m excited to see it happen,” said Abdul-Jabbar. “I don’t see records as personal accomplishments, but more as human achievements. If one person can do something that’s never been done, that means we all have a shot at doing it. It’s a source of hope and inspiration.
“Roger Bannister broke the four-minute mile back in 1954,” Abdul-Jabbar added. “Since then, not only have 1,400 runners beaten that time, but the new record is 17 seconds less. We all win when a record is broken and if LeBron breaks mine, I will be right there to cheer him on.”
Abdul-Jabbar scored 38,387 points during his 20-year NBA career. He has held the all-time scoring record since 1984 when he surpassed the previous record holder, Wilt Chamberlain. James is currently at 35,367 points for his career, 3,020 behind Abdul-Jabbar. An 18-year veteran, James could break Abdul-Jabbar’s record by appearing in 70 games over the next two seasons and averaging 22 points per game, both very attainable marks for him.
While James does not always get love from players of that era, Abdul-Jabbar seems to be rooting for him every step of the way as James nears the record.
Anthony Davis might be the butt of a lot of jokes during this week’s Taco Tuesday at LeBron James’ house.
The Green Bay Packers began their season with an absolutely embarrassing 38-3 drubbing at the hands of the New Orleans Saints on Sunday. The loss was the team’s biggest ever in a game started by quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
The Los Angeles Lakers star James proceeded to troll his teammate Davis, who is a big Packers fan, over the loss. James tweeted that someone needed to check in on Davis, adding roughly four million emojis for emphasis.
Though Davis is from Chicago, he is a proud supporter of the Packers. He has attended many games in Green Bay and has even repped the team during Lakers press conferences.
The Packers players are already getting memed enough for the blowout loss. Now even their supporters are getting clowned too.
The newest assistant coach of the Los Angeles Lakers should be plenty familiar to LeBron James and vice versa.
ESPN’s Dave McMenamin reported on Saturday that the Lakers have hired former NBA guard John Lucas III to join coach Frank Vogel’s staff. The 38-year-old had a journeyman career, both in the NBA and overseas, before becoming an assistant for the Minnesota Timberwolves in recent years.
You might also remember Lucas for another reason. He was unfortunately on the receiving end of a memorable James dunk back in 2012. James, who was then with the Miami Heat, jumped clean over Lucas, a member of the Chicago Bulls, to convert an alley-oop slam.
Along with his poster dunks on Tim Duncan in 2006, on Kevin Garnett in 2008, and on Jason Terry in 2013, James’ jam over Lucas (which you can see video of here) is one of the most iconic dunks of his entire career. You can be sure that James will remind Lucas of that much during their first practice together in Los Angeles.
LeBron James is seen by many as the greatest NBA player of all-time, but one retired former All-Star thinks that James would have been less successful had he arrived in the league even ten years earlier.
Detroit Pistons great Rasheed Wallace appeared recently on “The Million Dollaz Worth of Game” podcast. Wallace touched on the differences between his era and the modern era as well as how James may have fared back then.
“He probably would’ve done good with his physical stature, with him being bigger than the majority of the rest of the players,” said Wallace. “So he probably would’ve held his own. But I don’t think he would be as successful as he is now. It’s a whole different era back then. I couldn’t necessarily say that he would’ve been a beast. But I think he would’ve held his own.”
Wallace, who played in the league from 1995 to 2013, actually had plenty of overlap with James, who entered in 2003. In fact, James’ coming-of-age moment came against Wallace and the Pistons when he scored 25 straight points to help down them in the 2007 Eastern Conference Finals.
The point Wallace appears to be making is that basketball used to look a lot different in his heyday. In the early 2000s, defense was king, and it was not uncommon to see 74-73 final scores. In an effort to improve the fan viewing experience, the NBA then proceeded to ban hand-checking, implement the defensive three-second violation, and call stricter blocking fouls. Those rule changes essentially opened up the lane significantly for offensive players. On top of the three-point revolution of recent years, you might see that same 74-73 score at halftime nowadays.
Still, James, with his size, strength, athleticism, and IQ, likely would have adapted to and ultimately dominated any era of NBA basketball. But that won’t stop Wallace and other older-timers from having these kinds of takes.
H/T Lakers Daily
Paul Pierce is finally speaking out on his firing from ESPN and is throwing a stray at LeBron James in the process.
The retired former All-Star spoke with Chris Mannix of SI this week. In the interview, Pierce opened up about his Instagram Live video that led his termination by ESPN as well as his issues with the network.
“I was done with them, anyway,” said Pierce. “It wasn’t a great fit. There’s a lot of stuff over there that you can’t say. And you have to talk about LeBron all the time.
“Come on, I didn’t do anything illegal,” Pierce went on. “These motherf—–s in the Hall of Fame, some did [cocaine], f—ing battery. What the f— did I do? I was just having a good time. All the people coming after me, half you motherf—–s do the same s—. You’re just hiding it. And you all are married while you’re doing it. I’m divorced, I’m retired, I’m having fun.”
Mannix’s story also adds that the relationship between Pierce and ESPN had been strained for the last two years prior to the video, which featured Pierce playing poker at a friend’s house while drinking, smoking, and mingling with strippers. Pierce hated the travel involved with his job at ESPN, and network executives did not think he was working hard enough. The video was reportedly the last straw for the network.
The 43-year-old Pierce, who had been working as an NBA analyst for ESPN, got fired in April. He has since taken other public shots at his ex-employer.
As for James, he was Pierce’s longtime rival in the Eastern Conference. This is obviously far from the first time that ESPN has gotten criticized for their perceived over-coverage of The King.
LeBron James helped put an end to the DeMar DeRozan era in Toronto, but he would still like to see the team do right by DeRozan.
The four-time MVP James responded to a post on Instagram this weekend asking if the Raptors should retire DeRozan’s No. 10 jersey. James commented in all caps, “THATS A REAL QUESTION??? LOL. ABSOLUTELY THEY SHOULD.”
DeRozan, now with the Chicago Bulls, never got to win a title with Toronto. They traded him to the San Antonio Spurs in 2018 after getting swept in the second round by James’ Cleveland Cavaliers. The Raptors then went on to win their first-ever NBA championship the very next season led by Kawhi Leonard, the player they dealt DeRozan for.
Still, DeRozan is one of the most important players in Raptors franchise history. He made four All-Star teams and two All-NBA teams in his nine seasons in Toronto. DeRozan is also beloved as one of the rare homegrown stars to emerge from the Raptors. But there may be some lingering hard feelings on DeRozan’s part over the way his time in Toronto ended.
Jared Dudley barely played for the Los Angeles Lakers, but it’s quite clear that his departure from the team is viewed as a big blow by the team’s stars.
Speaking to Bill Plaschke of the Los Angeles Times, Dudley admitted that he had expected to return to the Lakers, saying it was “crazy” that he was not brought back. The 36-year-old added that he had no hard feelings toward the organization, but had tried to convince the team to bring him back to the point that he was willing to play on a non-guaranteed contract.
“Obviously LeBron and A.D. wanted me back,” Dudley said. “But we just couldn’t convince them.”
How serious were some Lakers about bringing Dudley back? According to Plaschke, LeBron James, Anthony Davis, and Russell Westbrook all lobbied the front office to keep Dudley, but their overtures were rebuffed. With that option out, Dudley opted to retire and join Dallas Mavericks coach Jason Kidd’s staff as an assistant.
James did not hide his anger at Dudley’s departure when the news came out. Dudley was regarded as a key locker room presence who kept the team’s stars on the same page and was widely beloved by teammates. Given his eagerness to return, it’s surprising the Lakers weren’t willing to find a way to accommodate him.
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HBO’s annual series “Hard Knocks” has been a big winner for the NFL. Viewers enjoy the behind-the-scenes look at a team’s training camp, and the series consistently draws a lot of buzz for the league.
That is perhaps why LeBron James thinks the NBA could use its own version. James, a longtime fan of the Dallas Cowboys, is clearly enjoying this year’s version spotlighting the team. The Los Angeles Lakers star said watching the series makes him want a similar version for the NBA — preseason only, of course.
James’ stance may put him in the minority. It’s a well-known fact that most NFL teams hate the idea of being featured on “Hard Knocks,” as the constant presence of cameras can often be disruptive and distracting. It’s why the league actually has a set of criteria for being featured on the show, and can essentially force teams to take part no matter how much they don’t want to.
James could probably volunteer the Lakers if he feels strongly about it. The additions of Russell Westbrook and Carmelo Anthony alone would make them a very intriguing subject.
LeBron James is not happy at all about losing the real MVP of the Los Angeles Lakers.
Veteran forward Jared Dudley has reportedly agreed to a deal to become an assistant coach for the Dallas Mavericks. Dudley will join the staff of former Lakers assistant Jason Kidd, who is now the head coach of the Mavs.
James, who had been teammates with Dudley for the last two seasons, had a vulgar reaction to the news of Dudley’s departure.
“Congrats to my guy if this true, which [it] probably is!” tweeted James. “But [facepalm emoji] man!! F–K”
“Excuse my language but [this] one hurt!!” the four-time MVP added. “For many reasons that you wouldn’t understand.”
Dudley was a member of the Lakers’ 2020 championship team. While the 36-year-old was no longer contributing much on the floor, Dudley had been universally lauded as a steady locker room presence.
A 14-year veteran, Dudley also served as the Lakers’ unofficial hype man. It sounds like James will definitely miss having him as a teammate.
Draymond Green is LeBron James’ longtime rival on the court, but Green feels similar to The King in at least one regard.
The Golden State Warriors star responded to one of his fan accounts on social media this week. The fan posted some of Green’s best stat lines from the 2020-21 season, including several triple-doubles or near-triple-doubles.
Green reposted the tweet to his Instagram Story and made a funny reference to James.
“@kingjames the washed king but I’m somewhere on the all washed team too,” wrote Green along with several laughing-face emojis.
James often refers to himself as “#WashedKing” on social media to poke fun at all the critics who think that his skills are declining. He most recently used the hashtag in response to being snubbed in an ESPN list.
As for Green, who is close friends with James off the court, he actually had a career-high 8.9 assists per game last season to go along with 7.0 points and 7.1 rebounds. Green also made his fourth All-Defensive First Team and is coming off a gold medal win with Team USA at the Tokyo Olympics. Thus, you should sleep on Green (plus James for that matter) at your own risk.