LeBron James drops truth bomb on why he brings the best out of his teammates

Brad Sullivan
4 Min Read

Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James compared his ability to get the most out of his teammates to his role as the father of three children.

James spoke in the wake of the Lakers’ Game 1 playoff victory over the Memphis Grizzlies and explained how individual differences can alter his motivational techniques.

“You have to pay attention,” James said. “That’s all. You have to pay attention on a day-to-day basis and know every individual is different. So you have to try to figure out how you can get the most out of every individual, and it’s different ways. I think it comes from being a father, too. Having three kids, I understand that I gotta parent my kids differently to get the best out of them. Some of them I can yell at, some of them I gotta comfort, be more comforting. Some I need to pull away to the side. Some I can yell in front of the group and they’d be fine with that. So, I think that helps.”

The Lakers’ 128-112 victory marked an impressive start to the team’s postseason, something that wasn’t even guaranteed in the closing weeks of the regular season.

Five different Lakers scored in double figures against the Grizzlies, with four of them finishing with 20 points or more. James ended his busy afternoon with a double-double of 21 points and 11 rebounds, and also added five assists, three blocks and two steals.

Being able to adapt his abilities as a father to his teammates is admirable, considering that James largely grew up under difficult circumstances with his own father’s presence virtually nonexistent.

From a basketball perspective, James’ leadership skills have been evident in the NBA over the past two decades. His efforts have resulted in him being a part of four league championship teams.

The most recent of those came with the Lakers in 2020 and took place under unprecedented circumstances due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Due to an extended shutdown, the remainder of that regular season and the playoffs all took place in Orlando, Fla.

To capture that 2020 title, James had to keep his Lakers teammates focused under difficult circumstances for roughly three months.

James’ current challenge remains daunting, despite the positive start to the postseason. The Lakers still need to win three more games to advance to the second round of the playoffs.

If the Lakers move on to the next round, stiff challenges still remain and will likely become more imposing. That will require James to continue using his abilities to get the most from his teammates.

Given the fact that the Lakers’ postseason hopes were in question for a good portion of this season due to injuries, the team’s current situation offers hope that James and his teammates can have a real impact in the weeks ahead

For now, however, James is zeroing in on Game 2 of the Grizzlies series, which is set for Wednesday night.

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Brad is a freelance writer for LakersDaily.com, who can clearly recall watching Lakers games in 1972 as they captured the first of their 11 Los Angeles-based titles. The franchise's evolution into a beloved and iconic franchise among its fan base since that memorable year allows for a wider perspective to be a part of his writing about the team's current fortunes.