LeBron James: ‘Very Challenging’ Playing Without Kevin Love

by March 16, 2018
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LeBron James has been a virtual one-man show in Cleveland for a couple of months now, and admits that it’s been an extreme challenge to carry the team without the injured Kevin Love.

James last hooped without an active All-Star by his side during the 2009-10 campaign, which ended with him infamously bolting to South Beach.

Love fractured his left hand against the Detroit Pistons on Jan. 30—the Cavs have gone 10-10 since—and recently told reporters that he expects to suit up again next week.

Per ESPN:

“It’s been a long time since I haven’t played with another All-Star on my team,” James said. “So, having Kev out has been very challenging for all of us. Kev has a big usage rate on our team. He’ll get the ball when things get tight, chaotic; we can throw it to him in the low post and get some things going.”

Yet, Love’s absence isn’t the only reason James is shouldering so much of the load for the Cavs. Larry Nance Jr. sat out Thursday with a pulled right hamstring. Rodney Hood returned from a lower back injury only to aggravate it again and be limited to 19 minutes. Tristan Thompson continues to miss time with a right ankle sprain. Rookie Cedi Osman is out with a hip flexor injury.

“It’s not just Kev,” James said. “We’re missing Double T as well. Rodney went back out again. So, obviously, you want to win every game, but my approach doesn’t change.

“[It] has always stayed the same: Just continue to attack, attack defenses, and if I attract two to the ball, give my guys opportunities. Rebound the ball. Defend. There’s a lot of energy that’s used with that, but that’s fine as well.”