LeBron James isn’t nearly as concerned about his workload as everyone else in Laker Land appears to be.
If James had things his way, he would suit up for 48 minutes each night.
New story: Both Kobe and Magic are wary of LeBron shouldering too much of the load in L.A. What does LeBron think about that? https://t.co/Dh9jxQyiFt
— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) December 5, 2018
“I understand the logic behind it,” James said. “I understand what Magic and Kobe are saying because we want to continue to grow the young guys. We want to see how much our young guys can grow and be the best they can be. I mean, Magic and Kobe know who I am. I know who I am. They know what they’re going to get out of me.
“That is, you know what you’re going to get out of me every game. Am I going to play well every game? Am I going to shoot the ball well every game? No. But you know who I am, and when it’s time to — when it’s really, really, really money time, you know who is going to be there. So we got guys who just want to continue to develop and guys that continue to get better and better just from experience. They haven’t had a lot of experience. So I think people are trying to blow it out of proportion, like, ‘OK, why do you have LeBron if you don’t want to use him?’ They don’t understand the logic behind it.”
James admits that being hardheaded about his minutes won’t be the best for the Lakers anyway.
“It doesn’t matter,” James said. “Like you guys asked me the other day, ‘Do you feel better after playing 30 minutes compared to playing 40 minutes?’ It’s like, ‘No.’ I work myself all year round to get in tip-top shape all year round. I don’t stop. So I can do whatever. I mean, I played a Game 7 of the Finals and I damn near played every minute. Last year I played every single game. Every single game. So, you know, you can kind of slice it how you want it, but I understand what Magic and Kobe are saying, and we have to continue to develop these guys because if we don’t, then long-term, what does that do for our franchise?
“I want to play 48 minutes a game. Seriously. But it’s not going to happen. It’s not smart. It’s not smart on anyone’s behalf, but it’s just the competitive side of me. If you ask any competitive guy that’s been in my case, do they like coming out? There’s not going to be one that’s going to say yes. But at the end of the day, you got to do what’s best for the team, and you got to be able to protect yourself as well. So I love everything that’s going on with our ballclub and this franchise since I got here.”