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#pounditFriday, October 15, 2021

Articles tagged: LeBron James

LeBron James, Isaiah Thomas have buried hatchet?

LeBron James

LeBron James and Isaiah Thomas were not exactly the closest of teammates during their time together on the Cleveland Cavaliers. It finally appears though that they are smoking the peace pipe.

James tweeted a message of support for Thomas this week after Thomas scored 81 points at a Pro-Am game in Seattle.

Thomas then responded by tweeting his gratitude back at James, referring to him as “KING.”

“You already know KING!!!” he wrote. “All love killa. This s— don’t stop.”

The exchange is notable as the two had clashed as teammates in Cleveland. Thomas reportedly felt that James talked down to him, and the former All-Star guard was traded after making just 15 appearances in a Cavs uniform. Recent months also saw Thomas take another apparent shot at James.

The timing of this peace offering is probably no coincidence though. Reports suggest that James’ Los Angeles Lakers are considering signing Thomas.

Carmelo Anthony reveals how LeBron James recruited him to Lakers

Carmelo Anthony

The long-rumored scenario of Carmelo Anthony and LeBron James becoming teammates has finally come to pass with the Los Angeles Lakers. Given how close the two are, one wouldn’t expect Anthony to need much convincing to take the opportunity, but James made sure to seal the deal.

Anthony spoke to the media Monday after his signing was made official, making clear that his priority now is to claim an elusive first NBA title. He admitted that he and James had talked “for years” about playing together, but the timing had never been right.

However, when it came time to make his free agency decision this time around, James made sure to send Anthony a simple message.

Anthony actually provides a lot of what the Lakers need, which is a boost to their outside shooting. He can still knock it down from deep, as evidenced by his 40.9 percent three-point shooting rate with Portland last season.

Yes, the Lakers are old, but James is using that critique as motivation. Anthony, after all, seems confident he has more to offer.

Lakers fans, show everyone who runs LA with this great T-shirt. It makes a perfect gift for you or a friend. You can buy it here.

LeBron James endorses Frank Vogel’s Lakers contract extension

LeBron James

The Los Angeles Lakers agreed to a contract extension with coach Frank Vogel Friday, and the deal appears to have the support of the team’s most important player.

LeBron James retweeted the post about Vogel’s contract extension on Twitter, adding his congratulations on the new deal.

James hasn’t always coexisted peacefully with his coaches. He and Vogel, however, have clearly struck up a very fruitful working relationship. Even beyond winning an NBA title together, Vogel has made clear that he feels James has been a big supporter of his. This tweet seems to be an indication that Vogel’s intuition is correct.

Vogel has a 94-49 regular season record in two seasons as coach of the Lakers. He would have been a lame duck coach next season without the new contract.

Charles Barkley shares why he ranks Michael Jordan over LeBron James

Charles Barkley

Charles Barkley has long said that Michael Jordan is hands-down the greatest NBA player of all time, and he reiterated in an interview this week that there is nothing LeBron James can do to change his mind.

Barkley was once again asked to compare Jordan and James during a recent appearance on HBO’s “Back on the Record” with Bob Costas. He said LeBron is “amazing” and praised him for his work both on the court and in the community, but he does not feel his accomplishments will ever quite stack up to Jordan’s.

“The reason I put Michael up there above those other guys — LeBron has stacked his teams, let’s be realistic,” Barkley said. “What Giannis (Antetokounmpo) and Dirk Nowitzki and guys like that have done, to go through the grind and to lose, which Michael did, that’s what separates sports. … That’s the difference in my opinion.”

Barkley certainly is not the first person to make that argument. LeBron deserves credit for singlehandedly bringing some Cleveland Cavaliers teams to the NBA Finals, but he wasn’t able to win a championship until he teamed up with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. He then returned to Cleveland to win a third title, but he had Kyrie Irving. James won his fourth championship with the Los Angeles Lakers after they acquired Anthony Davis.

Of course, Jordan had some help. He was fortunate to have Scottie Pippen as a teammate throughout his whole career. The Bulls also signed Ron Harper, traded for Dennis Rodman, and drafted Toni Kukoc. All of those players were instrumental in helping Jordan pile up championships.

Even if LeBron adds a fifth title to his resume next season, Barkley is not going to change his mind after the Lakers recently acquired Russell Westbrook.

Barkley has had much harsher comments in the past when asked to compare M.J. and LeBron. You can see more of his discussion with Costas below:

LeBron James responds to critics about how old Lakers are

LeBron James

LeBron James is developing a new narrative to help motivate him for next season. But he deleted a tweet on Wednesday in which he shared that motivation.

James sent a tweet saying the following:

“Keep talking about my squad, our personnel ages, the way he plays, he stays injured, we’re past our time in this league, etc etc etc. Do me one favor PLEASE!!!! And I mean PLEASE!!! Keep that same narrative ENERGY when it begins! That’s all I ask. #ThankYou” he wrote.

James deleted the tweet.

At 36 years old, James has been in the NBA since 2003 and seen a lot. He needs to manufacture ways to keep himself motivated, and it sounds like this will provide his new spark.

His Los Angeles Lakers added Carmelo Anthony (37), Trevor Ariza (36), Dwight Howard (35), Wayne Ellington (33), Kent Bazemore (32) and Russell Westbrook (32) this offseason. That’s hardly a young bunch, which has led to some criticism that they’re too old.

Will the roster prove to be too old to win? Only time will tell. For now, the criticism is providing a source of motivation for James.

Russell Westbrook met at LeBron James’ house to plot Lakers move

Russell Westbrook

Russell Westbrook is now a member of the Los Angeles Lakers, and the move came together just as he and the Lakers’ superstars planned.

On Thursday, word emerged that the Lakers pulled off a trade with the Washington Wizards to acquire Westbrook. The Lakers sent Kyle Kuzma, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Montrezl Harrell and a first-round pick to Washington for Westbrook and two future second-round picks.

The trade was culminated two weeks after a big meeting at LeBron James’ house.

According to the LA Times’ Broderick Turner, Westbrook met with Anthony Davis and LeBron at James’ home two weeks ago. There, they discussed teaming up together on the Lakers.

Turner reports that the players agreed to put their egos aside in the interest of pursuing a championship. For instance, James and Davis expressed a willingness to play different positions if necessary. Westbrook said he was willing to play off the ball when James wanted to handle the rock.

The result is the Lakers ended up pursuing and making the trade, with the Wizards fulfilling Westbrook’s desires.

The Lakers will enter the 2021-2022 season as a strong contender to win the championship, just as they did in 2020. The trade also means that Westbrook was 1-and-done in DC, just like he was 1-and-done in Houston.

Based on his reaction, James seems pretty pumped about having the “Brodie” in the mix.

LeBron James reacts on Instagram to Lakers’ trade for Russell Westbrook

LeBron James

The Los Angeles Lakers have added another superstar to their squad.

The Lakers on Thursday pulled off a trade for Russell Westbrook. They gave up a first-round pick plus Montrezl Harrell, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Kyle Kuzma to get Westbrook and a pair of second-round picks.

The acquisition of Westbrook gives the Lakers three true star players. James posted on Instagram about the acquisition. He shared a Photoshopped picture of Westbrook in a Lakers jersey, surrounded by James and Anthony Davis. His caption was about Davis (eyebrow), “Brodie” which is Westbrook’s nickname, and the crown for “King” James.

The Lakers won the NBA championship two seasons ago but got knocked out in the first round of the playoffs last season by the Suns. They’re hoping the Westbrook addition will be enough to get them back to the NBA Finals.

Westbrook averaged 22.2 points, 11.5 rebounds and a league-high 11.7 assists per game.

Lakers fans, show everyone who runs LA with this great T-shirt. It makes a perfect gift for you or a friend. You can buy it here.

Lakers looking to sign LeBron James’ former teammate?

LeBron James

The Los Angeles Lakers have a busy offseason ahead of them, and one of their first orders of business may be to reunite with a familiar face.

Marc Berman of the New York Post reported this week that the Lakers are eyeing Reggie Bullock, one of their former players who was teammates with LeBron James in 2018-19. Bullock, a 41.0 percent three-point shooter for the New York Knicks last season, will likely command the full mid-level exception of $9.2 million but could seek up to a three-year deal.

The Lakers now look almost completely different than they did when Bullock played for them. In addition to having a different head coach in Frank Vogel, the only non-James players who are still left are Kyle Kuzma, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, and free agent Alex Caruso.

Bullock’s ability as a spot-up shooter is always a good fit for a James-led offense. But the Lakers may have their sights set on bigger targets as well.

LeBron James responds to early critics of ‘Space Jam 2’

LeBron James

LeBron James’ response to all those who are already criticizing “Space Jam 2” is simply to say, “Scoreboard.”

The Warner Brothers film starring James opened in theaters this weekend and is drawing less-than-favorable reviews to kick off its run. On Saturday, James fired back at the critics. The four-time MVP tweeted an article stating that “Space Jam 2” was set for a $32 million opening weekend to easily dethrone Disney’s “Black Widow” for the No. 1 spot at the box office.

“Hi Haters!” James wrote in his caption.

Despite the strong box-office numbers, “Space Jam 2” currently has just a 4.1/10 rating on IMDB as well as a 31 percent approval rate from critics on Rotten Tomatoes. The audience score on Rotten Tomatoes is much more complimentary though at 82 percent.

The film is obviously mostly geared towards children and anyone who is nostalgic for the 1996 original starring Michael Jordan. Still, there are plenty of people who were skeptical of a sequel from the very start.

Mario Chalmers wants to reunite with LeBron James

LeBron James

Mario Chalmers is hoping for a chance to reunite with the guy he carried to two NBA championships.

The former Miami Heat guard Chalmers reacted this week to the news that the Lakers are looking to add another playmaker in free agency.

“Let me get a shot at this,” Chalmers wrote on Twitter. “Just a workout or let me come play pick up.”

Chalmers, of course, has history with LeBron James, having won two titles with him during their four seasons as teammates in Miami. The Lakers also recently hired former Heat assistant David Fizdale, who coached the two players in Miami, to join head coach Frank Vogel’s staff.

Now 35, Chalmers has been out of the NBA since 2018 but has gone on to play overseas in Italy and Greece recently. The Lakers have championship aspirations, which makes a Chalmers signing a major longshot. But it would certainly do the heart good to see James yelling at Chalmers again.