If there is any argument that LeBron James is NOT the best player in the NBA, it might not last much longer. LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers started out the 2017 season struggling to find their rhythm. However, with over a month of the regular season out of the way it is clear that Cleveland is once again setting their sights on another NBA Finals trip. The wildest thing about this path to the Finals revolves around, of course, LeBron James. According to teammates close to LeBron, James himself is only ‘80% engaged’ with the regular season — despite posting career highs across the board in terms of efficiency.
LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers know that they have to overcome a historically good Golden State team in order to become champions once again. That is why Cleveland spent so much time and money this past offseason in order to bulk up their roster, adding guys like Dwyane Wade and Derrick Rose to the rotation. With that being said, James is still going to be the most important player on the court when games start to matter. Right now, games don’t quite matter as much to LeBron and his teammates will be the first to admit it. Channing Frye, a longtime teammate to James, said, “Usually LeBron gives you about 60 percent. He’s about 80 percent LeBron and it’s looking effortless, so pretty scary.”
Of course, LeBron-doubters are going to look at comments like Frye’s and use them to disparage the superstar forward. This just isn’t the case and it isn’t the message that Cleveland’s roster is trying to pass along. What they are saying is simple: LeBron is so much better than anyone else that he can play at 60% effort and still outplay the best competition on the planet.
These comments were sparked after a sloppy win over Memphis which saw James close out the game by scoring 13 straight points. James is averaging 29 points, 9 assists and 8 rebounds per game while posting career-high marks in 3PT shooting and field goal percentage. James’ dominant play, even if at just 60% of his maximum effort has helped Cleveland to win their last eleven games. Cleveland knows that there is a long path ahead and that they’ll need a healthy, focused, and energized LeBron James in order to get there. LeBron can cement his legacy with another victory in the NBA Finals this season.