With the Lakers out of the playoff picture heading into the stretch run, Walton says the team is focused on keeping James fresh for the long-term.
LeBron is averaging 35.6 minutes a game this season—tying a career low for the 16-year future Hall of Famer—and has made it clear he doesn’t want to sit out any games.
“I will be monitoring his workload from here on out,” Lakers coach Luke Walton told ESPN on Thursday.
The 34-year-old James played 31 minutes, nearly five less than his season average, in the Lakers’ loss to Denver on Wednesday. The Lakers (30-35) have lost four in a row and eight of their last 10.
“We’ve got four years,” Walton said during the preseason. “We want to make sure we’re not only playing at our best come the end of the season but that he’s fresh. And that’s a goal for us. And it’s a goal that we’re on a journey, and it’s not a one-year journey. We’re continuing to try to and be our best season by season, but also as each one goes on.”