LeBron James Defends KCP, Respects Dwight Howard for Sticking Up for Teammates - Lakers Daily

LeBron James Defends KCP, Respects Dwight Howard for Sticking Up for Teammates

LeBron James and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope Kevin Jairaj / USA TODAY Sports

Last night, LeBron James defended teammate Kentavious Caldwell-Pope from recent criticisms hurled at the Los Angeles Lakers shooting guard.

Caldwell-Pope has struggled with his shooting this season, but came up big against the Sacramento Kings on Friday, scoring 12 points in the fourth quarter. He knocked down a clutch 3-pointer with 3:07 left to play in the game to give the Lakers the lead, 93-90. That gave L.A. the cushion it needed to eventually pull off a 99-97 win at home.

After the game, James came to the aid of the veteran shooting guard and also offered credit to Dwight Howard for doing the same.

“For me personally, I could give a damn about what people say outside the locker room and outside our practice facility, outside our plane and team buses,” James told reporters. “Because it really don’t matter, it’s outside noise and I’ve heard it my whole career. I really don’t pay attention to it. I don’t think anybody should pay attention to it, but I think it’s dope that Dwight stuck up for him.

“But we all just tell him, ‘Listen, we don’t care if you make shots but we want you to take them with confidence. You’re going to get great looks.’ Myself and A.D. (Anthony Davis) is going to attract a lot of double teams. Rajon [Rondo] does a great job of getting guys involved as well, we just want him to shoot it with confidence and that’s what he did in the fourth quarter. But don’t let the game be dictated because if you make or miss shots, there’s other ways you can affect the game. He did it on both ends tonight.”

Caldwell-Pope contributed 16 points overall with nine of those points coming from 3-of-5 shooting from beyond the arc.

This season, the University of Georgia alum is averaging 6.2 points per game on 39.0 percent shooting from the field and 29.6 percent from three-point territory.

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