LeBron James credits the Spurs’ defensive scheme in the 2007 NBA Finals for having forced him to work on his jumper.
James, 34, moved past Peja Stojakovic for No. 18 on the career 3-pointers list in the Los Angeles Lakers’ 114-104 Monday night win against San Antonio.
LeBron says this is the best he has ever felt during a 17-year Hall of Fame career.
“I just want to be able to not have any weaknesses, you know, and allow a defense to dictate what I do,” James told Spectrum Sports after the game. “Because of the Spurs, in a lot of my early years, [they are] part of the reason why my jump shot is a lot better today. My first Finals appearance in ’07, they went under on everything and I didn’t shoot the ball, I wasn’t comfortable with shooting the ball at that point in time in my career. So I give a lot of thanks to their scheme, a lot of thanks to a lot of other teams that I went against.”
James’ 33 points and 14 assists paced Los Angeles on a night when the entire team seemingly found its stroke, as the Lakers shot 14-for-33 (42.4%) from the outside, continuing a recent trend.
“Every time I tell you guys that it’s the best I’ve felt, you guys kind of get a, ‘All right,’ [look of disbelief] and then I go out and I’m able to do what I do,” James said.
“But that’s how I feel, man. My spring [is back], my quick-twitch [muscles are back], my mind is sharp, my body is good. I don’t know. I don’t know what’s going on. It might be the wine I’m drinking. I’ll keep drinking some more if I’m going to keep doing that.”