Former NBA All-Star Joakim Noah recently appeared on the Knuckleheads podcast and spoke about what it was like to compete against LeBron James.
“Every time we played the Miami Heat, we played Cleveland, every team that LeBron was on, it was always a war,” Noah said. “Those are the games that you penciled on the schedule. You put that circle.”
Noah spent the majority of his career in the Eastern Conference. James spent more than a decade in the Eastern Conference during his time with the Heat and Cleveland Cavaliers, so the two players faced each other fairly often.
It’s a challenge for any player to go head to head with James, and it sounds like Noah embraced that challenge during his playing days.
Noah certainly played with a level of intensity that is necessary to compete with a player like James. However, the two-time All-Star was never able to win an NBA title in his career, and James likely had something to do with that.
Noah retired with career averages of 8.8 points, 9.0 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game. He was an elite defender, which was part of the reason he was named to two All-Star teams.
James, meanwhile, is still active today. His Los Angeles Lakers are looking to win another title in the 2021-22 season. Given the way the team’s roster is assembled, a championship run seems like a realistic possibility.