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Do star players want to play with LeBron?

IndianaBasketball
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Do star players want to play with LeBron?

https://www.businessinsider.com/kevin-durant-nba-stars-playing-lebron-ja...

I'm just now reading Kevin Durant's comments about why stars may not want to play with LeBron James due to his style of play and the toxic media attention. Of course, Durant is being called a hater by some, but he has a great point. I actually agree with him 100% and I've been saying this for several years. Despite LeBron having great vision and being a great passer, his style of play isn't unselfish. That's due to the fact his entire game is built on dominating the ball/playing hero ball and he won't commit to an actual offensive system where there is player/ball movement and everyone can get into rhythm. He dribbles too much and plays too much ISO. He forces everyone into a role player's role, which is fine if you're a role player (Floor spacer/catch and shoot, P&P/P&R big, etc), but not if you're an elite level player who needs the ball. You're forced to sacrifice half of your game if you're an elite level player. Several of his previous teammates have made comments/complained.

It's hard for guys to play that way, even if you're an actual role player. Eventually those catch and shoot jump shots at the end of the shot clock stop falling. Eventually when you play against great teams, especially defensively, those role players' other limitations get exposed. Then it's "LeBron needs better teammates". However, then when he's surrounded with elite level talent, those players are forced into the same roles as role players. Then when they don't play well eventually (Due to sacrificing or playing into a forced role), they are criticized harshly by the media/fans. Not saying LeBron doesn't get criticism, but he got his 25/30, 8 and 8 due to playing hero ball, so the main narrative is mostly "He needs more help." Well, how much more help does he need?

It's so obvious too. LeBron is great, so it's obviously a huge blow losing him, but a big reason CLE falls apart when he leaves is because there's never a system or any real talent in place. It's 100% LeBron and players who are meant for his skill set. Hence the reason why Magic Johnson just made comments about LeBron not doing too much, when reports came out that he was ignoring Luke Walton's play calls. He literally said that they didn't want another CLE situation.

This is an interesting subject. Some are quick to dismiss it considering LeBron's career numbers, success, etc, but I think this is a great subject. What are your thoughts? How do you feel about what KD had to say?


BeastMode716
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I thought KD's comments were cynical & kind of cowardly

KD's comments were clearly directed at Lebron but instead of saying that Durant couched it by claiming he was attacking the Media

Saying no one wants to play w/ Lebron b/c You guys (the Media) kiss up to him & the other guys get all the blame when it goes sideways.

Now as far as your comments on Lebron's "Hero ball doesn't work" & a "Offensive System is the better way to go" and so on - I would just remind people that all this talk of a "System" being better than the Super Star is ONE team - the Golden State Warriors - maybe the Greatest team of All Time & the Dubs needed to go out & get KD in free agency b/c Lebron had just beaten them in the 2016 NBA Finals & if Kyrie Irving & Kevin Love are not out w/ injuries Cleveland most likely wins the 2015 Finals too

Bosh & Wade clearly wanted to play w/ Lebron & the Phila Sixers 2 young stars Joel Embiid & Ben Simmons were Begging Lebron to join the Sixers & Kevin Love has always said he luvs playing w/ Lebron

So are there Some Star players who can't handle the spot light & the pressure of playing w/ Lebron - sure there are but that is more an idicator of their fears rather than an indictment of Lebron.

But if you really read between the lines of this article it feels like Durant has a resentment & KD believes that HE is the best player in the World & he does Not feel like the Media gives Him enough credit but KD simply has not accomplished what Lebron has accomplished & most would argue that KD is not even the best player on his Own team - that in fact Steph Curry is - so I don't know why KD is so angry w/ the Media.

If Lebron would have joined Paul Pirce & KG's Celtics after they knocked him out of the playoffs in 2008 Lebron would have gotten lit on Fire by the Media & rightly so. Top players were never going to play in Cleveland so he & Bosh joined up w/ Wade in Miami where Miami was not even a playoff team the previous year. There was no guarentee anything in Miami would work

But in terms of Lebron & the current NBA - there is Only one team winning Titles over Lebron & that is the Warriors & no one Ever talks about this but it really reminds me a Lot of the Celtics vs Wilt's Sixers rivalry of the 1960's where Boston had one of the Great teams of ALL Time & Wilt's Sixers beat them Once winning the Title in 1967. just like Lebron today, Wilt's talent was Overwhelming & it took a team Stocked w/ Hall of Famers to overcome Wilt's Greatness & many trued to diminish Wilt just like they try to diminish Lebron today - they would say Wilt Only won 2 Titles & he can't win! But just like the Warriors it took a Special once in a generation team to beat these Freak of Nature Super Stars

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That’s a very good take. A

That’s a very good take. A conundrum for sure. I’d still rather have LBJ than not, and I’m thrilled he’s on our Lakers.

JDB12
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I agree with you that KD

I agree with you that KD might definitely be jealous and believe he deserves more recognition. But LeBron's hero ball is the same as anyone else's hero ball. It works some times but you can't be a consistent team with it. I know he's made the Finals 8 years in a row but the East has been terrible since that streak started. And LeBron has had much more talented teams than any other team in the East during that span besides maybe last season. Not trying to belittle, just adding proper context.

And I don't think the Warriors "needed" to go out and get KD to beat LeBron. I think they would have beat the Cavs the last two seasons without KD in 6 games or less. I know KD was important the last two Finals, but we were looking at arguably the greatest team of all-time before he got there -- they would have been fine without KD and possibly better today without him had they never signed him. And if we're saying the Warriors would have lost 2015 had Kyrie and Love been fine, the Warriors would have finished off the Cavs in 2016 had Draymond not got wrongly ejected game 5. But we could have "what if's" all day. They are irrelevant so I'll stop it there.

Bosh and Wade wanted to join LeBron because there wasn't as much attention and drama back then. They didn't know what not being the alpha was like then and they wanted championships so they only thought that statistics were the only sacrifices made. But when you're a superstar or borderline superstar, living in a teammates shadow would pobably be tough. That's what I think KD's getting at. And Simmons and Embiid are very young and probably don't understand how having LeBron effects them on and off the court (other than likely winning more on the court), they just have tunnel vision for championships which is good, but can lead to decisions they could potentially regret.

But you mentioned you mentioned that Bron joining the Heat who had not made the playoffs the previous year wasn't a guarentee anything could work. Let's not be naive to try to make him look better by making it a better move than going to the Celtics. Going to a team with arguably the league's best SG and PF is pretty much the same as going to a Celtics team with a good, but declining Pierce, KG, and Ray.

I'm not trying to hate, but I feel like a lot of people aren't naive and inaccurate when it comes to LeBron both when critizing and praising him.

JDB12
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*are naive and inaccurate

*are naive and inaccurate

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This is why I really

This is why I really appreciate having Kawhi Leonard on the Raptors (and used to appreciate Demar Derozan). Both guys just come in and work. Kawhi Leonard plays at the highest level in the NBA, he doesnt complain, seek media attention, create narratives or storylines the guy just plays basketball at an MVP level. Who wouldnt wanna play with Kawhi. Really respect what he does in todays age of social media and hope he resigns lonterm because it really is something else.

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I've been saying this for

I've been saying this for awhile and gotten negged like crazy but I stand by it. LeBron more-or-less makes his teammates worse by his style of play (Same with Westbrook). Yes, they both average a lot of assists so you would assume they make their teammates better. But they are both so ball dominant that other players don't get to use their strengths and essentially become spot-up shooters, screeners, and rebounders. Other primary ball handlers or isolation scoerers or P&R players don't get to get into a rhythym because they rarely get to do it. Again, if LeBron is on your team he should definitely have the ball in his hands more than anyone and I have no problem with him taking more shots than anyone on the team. But both he and Westbrook are basically useless off the ball on offense, they don't really screen to get others open or really move at all, and they don't spot-up well (LeBron has improved, but still not great). And because of this they always have the ball in their hands.

In regards to "superteams", I know having multiple star players on a team will obviously require sacrifices, usually to statisics. But when Love goes from averaging 26 and 14, to 16 and 9 and Bosh went from 24 and 8 to 18 and 6 with both having shooting percentages drop... I know both went to be the third option, but if LeBron made his teammates better, shouldn't their percentages go up? I know it's not just LeBron's fault, other teammates and coaching effects in. But honestly, a lot of is is the way he plays and needs the ball in his hands to be effective. Post scorers suffer with LeBron, especially when you can shoot because they automatically move you to the perimeter to spot up. That's why Love and Bosh saw a drop in percentages, points and boards. Guys like Hood and Clarkson joined the Cavs last season who were solid 14+ ppg scorers and were inneffective because neither got to use their primary offensive strengths. It shows LeBron's style of play makes a lot of his teammates worse. Again, LeBron should definitely have the ball in his hands more than anyone, but he needs to adapt his game to make his teammates better. Because there's no way his Cavs team last year should have been taken to 7 games by the Pacers. They were a far more talented team then Indiana last year.

I'm not trying to hate on Bron to hate. But the best player in the league has his flaws. And the thing that makes me upset about it is people take it out on his teammates. Saying he has no talent around him, and he has to carry dead weight or washed up stars. No, he's had more than enough talent to win a championship besides his first stint in Cleveland. Would like to see him work on his off-the-ball skills. And I understand where Durant is coming from about the negative attention. It's not LeBron's fault for how good he is and everyone wanting to be in his business, but as a teammate, do you wanna be around that?

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Nice post you make a good

Nice post you make a good point Bosh and Love were put in positions to make Lebron better not the other way around although we dont hear much about that. Both were added to their teams as the 3rd piece. Bosh went from a face up/mid range/post up player to a spot up 3 point shooter. Much more difficult shots playing off the ball knowing how to find the spot on the floor that will be open and create passing lanes while setting picks and being expected to defend/rebound.

Another thing though, Bosh knew what he was getting into. I remember him in an interview talking about how he expanded his range in order to lengthen his career. How he didnt feel like banging down low was his lane. He signed with the Heat thoroughly aware of his role and he was awarded with two championships piggybacking James and Wades success. So when I hear him complain I kinda get upset.

Love however was traded to his situation with Lebron and told what type of player he had to become. Irving's path was also altered when James decided to waltz back in town and takeover the team so I kinda understand why those guys would feel the way they did. Especially Irving. Management probably sold him the sun and the moon, told him they think he can be the best player in the world, they believe him, then James comes back and I gaurantee that behavior shifted.

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Great points BeastMode716 but

tbh Lebron situation now isn't same as it was in 2010. Bosh and Wade were also his friends.
Also Bosh wasn't really that elite of a player (he was great and fairly underrated, but he isn't KD or Kawhi)

I think what KD said is fair, LALA now is Lebron's team, and if you joining him in FA you just decided to sign for Lebron's team, no matter how good you are, you are going to be judged as Lebron's teammate

In the next FA, Lebron will be 34 going 35, he will sooner or later get worse, I think many elite players will pass on joining him just like Paul George did.

Irving was quite vocal on leaving him, Love was quite vocal on how difficult it is to play beside him, those were younger players, same generation of the next free agents super stars.

Remember, Lebron was the oldest All star in 2018 All star game, only 2 players were less than 3 years younger
But I think many all stars would like to play with him, but not KD, Kawhi level of players

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Damn yaw some haters

Damn yaw some haters

Andv1 Waiting
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It all depends on the type of player you are...

Personally if I am looking at all lebron teams there is the following:

A former allstar that is relegated to a 3rd option tier type player that essentially becomes a catch and shoot type player-See Love and Bosh...

A former franchise player that plays robin/part time closer when lebron is off or not getting calls-See Wade/Irving..

So with saying that I see the following happen in the near future if Lebron is eventually allowed to run things...

Kuzma is their 3rd guy in the K-love/Bosh type role

They will trade Ingram and Ball for their closer type player-See Beal,Dame or A.D as who they may go after..

However to answer your question: Why don't players want to team up with Lebron? See GSW to why...K.D's Legacy is essentially now shot baring something stupid like either going back to OKC to win a Ring then choosing where to finish up if not their(ala Lebron return to Cavs) or Taking an absolute scrub team to the Finals and winning it all. Players don't want to have their legacy tied to being Lebrons spectators or not being able to play to their strengthes and being remembered as nothing special..Then there is also the you are Lebrons scapegoat which probably doesn't also appeal to many players-See Lebron needs more shooter articles to what I mean...

Is it fair call about him not necessarily as he tries to stand up for his team mates...But if you are a competitor you probably want to beat the perceived top 5 players in the league which is also a major factor which doesn't get mentioned at all...

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Quotes I've seen recently and

Quotes I've seen recently and over the years:

We don’t want his usage to be high, like he has to have the ball all the time.” - Magic

"Doing everything isn't a recipe for winning championships." - Kobe

"LeBron is the best player in our league, but some have a hard time playing with him." - Paul George

"It can be tough sometimes just because he's such a dominant player. He's the best player in the NBA, so it boils down to the coach. Is the coach going to get everybody involved, or is he gonna let Bron' decide when he wants to get everybody involved? That's one of the things we were going back-and-forth with in Miami." Mario Chalmers

"It's going to be very difficult for him. Even if I was in his corner and I was able to tell him what to expect and what to do, it still doesn't make any difference. You still have to go through things, you still have to figure out things on your own. It's extremely difficult and extremely frustrating. He's going to have to deal with that." - Bosh on Love playing with LeBron

"There's a lot of one on one. Our offense has to be way better. We have to learn to execute. Get the ball moving from side to side." Isaiah Thomas while with the Cavs

“I got back to having fun playing basketball with a great group of guys. We were playing off one another. Coach gives a lot of freedom to these guys — some structure and a lot of freedom, and I love it. I love playing with them. I love playing within a system. It’ll be fun.” - Jay Crowder after first game with Jazz after being traded from the Cavs

"I actually like playing on the second unit better. I'm more of a playmaker and distributor and I handle the ball a little bit more instead of just running to the corner." - JR Smith

"It seems like he has some good talent to me. He’s got Korver who’s a great shooter, J.R. Smith who has always been a solid player — we focus on his one mistake and that tends to overshadow all the things he’s done to help them win a championship before — you’ve got Kevin Love, who was an All-Star and an Olympian; Rodney Hood, who was a 17-point scorer in the Western Conference; you’ve got Tristan who is back to playing like he played a few years ago. He’s got some workable pieces there. I don’t understand how, in order to talk about how great LeBron is we need to [expletive] on everybody else. That’s not O.K. Those guys have talent. I don’t buy this whole thing that he’s playing with a bunch of garbage." - Kobe

There are also a lot of articles, going back as far to his early Cavs days, reporting that LeBron's teammates were complaining that he was doing everything and playing for assists . . . Players not feeling involved. There are also recent reports that both Kawhi Leonard and Jimmy Butler aren't interested in the Lakers since LeBron signed.

You might disagree, but is KD really saying anything different? Can you really just say he's hating, bitter, etc? Or is he saying out loud what the thinking may be in the league? I never bought into the Kevin Love top five player hype while he was with the Wolves, but he went from looking like an offensive star to just a floor spacing big. Kyrie demanded a trade out of CLE. Paul George didn't even give the Lakers a meeting, which is basically his home town team. Chris Bosh didn't look anything like the offensive player he did in TOR and that man was one of the more talented offensive bigs in the league.

This is a legit issue IMO. I'm interested to see if the Lakers can sign a superstar this upcoming summer.

Insane13
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Notice we’re talking about

Notice we’re talking about superstars but the only active superstar you quoted was Paul George. Jr isn’t know as a team player , Jae crowder hasn’t helped the jazz too much as they have joe ingles already , Isaiah Thomas hasn’t even played this year and chalmers is out of the league. I’ll listen to Kobe because he’s a legend but he said Korver , Smith , love and hood like they would even get close to making a finals with another star not named lebron. They wouldn’t.

IndianaBasketball
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I posted quotes made by role

I posted quotes made by role players to show that not even role players are okay with just standing in a corner all of the time and need rhythm, etc.

You may not like it, but you can't change the fact that this is something that is being said about LeBron around the league.

We'll see how legit it is this upcoming summer.

Insane13
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So somebody who gets his team

So somebody who gets his team better no matter where he goes makes his team worse ? I mean look at the cavs now their the worst team in the league because of lebron leaving. This narrative is overrated tbh. Only superstar who ever left lebron was Kyrie and other than that nobody has left who was on his team. You guys are bringing up quotes from people who weren’t on his team or are retired. Ask the lakers right now if he’s making them better or worse.

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Still better than Kobe

Its not like when nobody would sign with the Lakers after Shaq left, there was almost a decade where nobody wanted to play eith kobe. (Ron Artest dorsnt count, that dude crazy)

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LeBron

I also remember that time when Dion Waiters was begging for the ball and LeBron completely ignored him. It was basically LeBron all day long making plays. I feel for the other players who are limited to a certain position when they were with LeBron. I do feel they needed a bit of freedom because when you play with LeBron, you're so limited at what you do, it basically kills your rhythm. He's a great teammate in terms personality but during a basketball game, it's kinda basically "Give LeBron the ball and get out of the effin way!"

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Dion Waiters was a ball

Dion Waiters was a ball stopper with those cavs. Even before Lebron came back he was having problems with Kyrie. He isn’t the best example in this argument.

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Considering LBJ was part of

Considering LBJ was part of one of the first modern era Big 3's and won a title with K-Love he has played with top players. But would say Kobe and LBJ have ever co-existed on a team?

KD has played with top running mates and went onto another superstar's team when he joined Steph Curry at GSW.

Would LBJ have ever gone into someone else's house like that and taken on a supporting or co-headline role?

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You are sort of correct...

Answer to the first question-Kobe Lebron yes it could have worked but would have been a lot of your turn my turn like K.D and Russ but could work as both have quite high B-ball IQ and had played together on the olympics, I think and the other question is this prime Kobe or Achilles tear Kobe?

K.D played with Westbrook and a skeleton crew every year barring the Harden,Ibaka and Russell years.. So this is sort of correct as it is more Running Mate not Mates lol..Adams is now turning into what they needed unfortunately a little to late.. Because imagine a core of: Adams,K.D,Oladipo and Russell.. That would have definitely been a contending core..If we had also been able to still get schroder damn we could have even been legit title contenders lol... Don't get me wrong K.D's team choice was both weird and weak/sucked but he still earned that choice which is far game unfortunately..

See Heatles to would lebron take a Co-headline role yes he would. That was Wades team they shared the spot light and Wade showed him how to win it all, with Wade being willing to allow Lebron to take over when he wanted to..

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All the players who've said

All the players who've said it's hard to play with LeBron won more when they played with LeBron. So honestly it sounds to me like they're just &$#%#[email protected]!ing about their stats.

Now if they said: We could have won even *more* if LeBron played within a system, maybe they have a point. But not every team has the coaching to implement a system, or the players to execute a system, that would be superior to just letting LeBron do his thing. Cleveland clearly didn't. Love and Irving never won shit on their own, and Blatt and Lue were rookie coaches. In Miami, Bosh had never won shit, and Wade and Spoelstra had never gotten past the first round since the 2006 championship team.

People talk about 8 straight finals, which is amazing, but how about 13 straight conference semifinals? How many teams realistically see even *one* conference semifinals in their near future?

Fact is, over the last decade and a half, the surest and simplest way to become a contender is to get LeBron on your team.

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