LeBron James declares he’s going to ‘make sure’ he plays every remaining Lakers game this season

Jonathan Sherman
5 Min Read

Following the All-Star break, LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers will have 23 more games in the 2022-23 regular season to try to secure a spot in the postseason.

For James, he has made it clear that he considers the upcoming regular season games to be 23 of the most important of his career. Beyond that, he has stated that he plans to play in every single one of them.

“These are 23 of the most important games of my career for a regular season,” James said Sunday, a few hours before the All-Star Game.

James added that his plan is to play in all of them.

“I’m going to figure out ways to make sure I’m available and on the floor for every single one of these 23 games,” he declared.

The primary reason why his goal to play in all 23 games is newsworthy is because he has reportedly been dealing with a foot injury that has been causing him some pretty substantial pain. According to the report, James could be dealing with the pain for the remainder of the season.

Whether his and the Lakers season ends at the end of the regular season or extends into the postseason still remains to be seen.

“I want to make a push to make the playoffs,” he said. “I see myself not being kept out of the postseason two years straight. That’s not part of my DNA. We’re sitting here talking about the record, things of that nature, but I’m more passionate about trying to make the postseason and give ourselves a chance to compete for another Larry O’Brien Trophy. That’s just who I am. That’s what I’m cut from.’ That’s what I am cut from.”

At the moment, the Lakers certainly are down but not out when it comes to the playoff chase. L.A. currently finds itself sitting at the No. 13 seed in the Western Conference and is 3.5 games back from the No. 6 seed, the final seed to advance straight into the playoff bracket.

With that in mind, the Lakers are just two games back from the Oklahoma City Thunder in the No. 10 seed. As NBA fans know, the No. 10 through No. 7 seeds now battle in a play-in tournament. Two out of those four teams end up advancing into the playoff bracket.

James’ star teammate Anthony Davis has already made it clear that the Lakers have the goal to earn at least the No. 6 spot and would love to avoid the play-in tournament.

However, given what stage the season is in, that might be too much to ask for.

James, Davis and the rest of the Lakers roster are going to have to return from the All-Star break with a playoff mentality. Every single one of the next 23 games will pose a great opportunity for the team, and James seems to be fully aware of that fact.

“I’ve always been confident in any club that I’ve been on, once we got into the playoffs, that we can compete with anyone, and I feel no different now,” James said. “With the roster the way we’re shaped up right now, if we can finish off this regular season on the right foot, then we can compete versus anyone in the Western Conference, if not the whole league.”

If the Lakers do end up managing to advance to the playoffs, they’ll be a really dangerous team to face off against. However, a lot of work has to be done before the Lakers can start thinking about what they’ll do once they get to the playoffs.

For now, the only goal is simply punching their ticket.

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Jonathan is a freelance writer, filmmaker, and passionate fan of the NBA. In the past Jonathan has covered politics, entertainment, travel, and more. He is a proud contributor of Lakers Daily.