Lakers monitor LeBron James’ minutes to forestall ‘Cleveland over again’ | NBA


Lakers president of basketball operations Magic Johnson reiterated Los Angeles needs to proceed limiting LeBron James’ minutes, however he defined the rationale behind that’s as a result of the group would not wish to make among the identical errors Cleveland made with the utilization of the 33-year-old. 

“We try to be sure that we watch his minutes but in addition that we do not run all the things by him as a result of now it’s Cleveland over again and we do not need that,” Johnson mentioned in an interview on SiriusXM NBA Radio (by way of Yahoo Sports activities). “We wish to stand up and down.”

Coming into Thursday, James was averaging 34.eight minutes, which is a career-low in his 16 seasons. As compared, James averaged 36.9 minutes final season whereas enjoying in all 82 video games for the primary time in his profession. However the Lakers wish to be sure James stays contemporary this season.

“Principally minutes, making an attempt to verify we do not overplay him after which additionally utilization of the ball in his arms,” Johnson mentioned. “We acquired plenty of ball handlers so we really feel we cannot overuse him by way of his ballhandling and in addition each play has to run by him. I feel we acquired confirmed scorers — Kyle Kuzma, Brandon Ingram … after which when you have got two level guards like Ball and Rondo, we do not have to have LeBron having the ball in his arms on a regular basis.”

Despite the fact that James’ minutes have gone down, he is nonetheless averaging 28.1 factors per recreation, which is probably the most he is averaged because the 2009-10 season.

James acknowledged in October the Lakers wish to scale back his minutes, however the four-time MVP mentioned he nonetheless feels robust sufficient to play most minutes.

“I am at all times contemporary,” James mentioned initially of the season, per ESPN. “All my coaches wish to work out a method of learn how to reduce my minutes. I preserve telling them I am robust sufficient to play most minutes, however they will not hearken to me, so, it is OK. I prefer it.”

The Lakers (12-9) tackle the Mavericks (10-9) on Friday with tipoff set for 10:30 p.m. ET.

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