LOS ANGELES (AP) – Instead of preparing for a playoff run, LeBron James spends the spring mainly playing hoops with his teenage sons and enjoying tea time with his little daughter.
And when he’s not watching with his wife Tiger King, he’s looking in the news for information about whether the coronavirus pandemic will allow the Los Angeles Lakers to end their impressive season chasing an NBA championship.
James is still optimistic about the future of the Lakers, but he also knows that safety comes first.
“I don’t think I can have a closure if we don’t have a chance to end this season,” James said from home on a conference call with Lakers Beat reporters on Wednesday.
The Lakers were on their way to their first playoff spot since 2013 when the NBA season was interrupted on March 11th. With 49 to 14, they have the best record of the Western Conference and lead the second-placed Clippers (44 to 20) with 5 1/2 games to only Milwaukee (53-12) in the overall ranking.
The Lakers did it after a thorough roster turnover last summer marked by the arrival of Anthony Davis. They also stalled through a stressful pre-season trip to China, followed by the death of franchise icon Kobe Bryant in a helicopter crash in January.
James ’17. NBA season is obviously unique for many reasons, but he’s unusually proud of what the Lakers have achieved so far.
” I can be a little satisfied with what our team has achieved this year (with) a first year coach, a first year system and a completely new coaching staff that has brought so many new teams to our team this year Brought pieces. James said. “ I honestly didn’t think we could get together as quickly as we could, just as many new pieces (and) that Anthony brought in. He spent seven years in New Orleans, so he got into a new system, played with myself, and how could we get together? I thought it would take a lot longer than it was, but I was wrong. I was very wrong. ”
And then all this good work suddenly stopped four weeks ago. Two unidentified Lakers players subsequently tested positive for coronavirus, but the Lakers say James and his teammates are all healthy after completing their 14-day isolation.
James will be deeply disappointed if the Lakers don’t have a chance to test themselves during a playoff run, but he realizes what’s most important in the coming weeks and months.
James initially expressed reluctance to play in empty arenas or the possibility of NBA teams gathering in the same city to end the season in the form of a sports quarantine. The 16-fold All-Star selection now says that he is ready for everything that is safe and smart.
” If it’s a single, isolated target, if it’s Las Vegas or some other place that holds us down and offers the best possible chance of being safe, not just on the ground but also off the ground, it’s this Talks will be had, ”said James. “ Once this thing has a good grip and people in the higher ranks understand it, we can take the next step if they know we’re safe. But security is always the most important thing, and then we go from there. ”
James is not back at work with Mike Mancias, his personal trainer. Instead, he trains with his wife Savannah and plays a lot of tires with Bronny James, their 15-year-old son, on a thoroughly sterilized dish that belongs to a friend. He also shoots tires with the whole family outside in his own house.
James meditates weekly, but says that thanks to his family, his mental state is excellent. He has often spoken to his loved ones about lack of time during the NBA season, which is why he enjoys this intense togetherness with his children.
“You wake up in a positive state of mind every day,” James said with a laugh. ” Maybe one reason is that they’re not really at school, so I know they are falling asleep much more now. But they also value life so much. … just seeing how my children wake up with this positive attitude helps. For me I wake up, I can have a good breakfast and then I train. And when I train, I’m always in a very positive mood. ”
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