One thing that the Los Angeles Lakers seemingly lacked last season was lots of fire on the defensive end.
Offseason acquisition Patrick Beverley was brought in to bring that fire on defense and be a leader for the Lakers alongside LeBron James and Anthony Davis.
Early signs reveal that Beverley is going to be a perfect fit for the team in the upcoming season. He seems to be really enjoying his time with the team so far.
He recently spoke about being impressed by James’ basketball IQ throughout the first days of training camp.
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— Ben Hustle (@BenHustle4) September 29, 2022
“It’s just high-IQ basketball, knowing angles, knowing screening angles,” Beverley said. “One thing I have learned about him, you see him throughout the game, elite passer, probably one of the best to ever do it from his height, his size.
“So, just knowing where the screen angles, knowing when to roll. You look out, the ball gon’ be right there on your chest. I mean, that’s just the nature of the business when you play with LeBron James.”
It’s a long-standing belief that James has one of the highest basketball IQs of all time. He often sees things on the court that nobody else is able to see.
That’s part of the reason why he’s considered to be one of the best players ever. Throughout his career, he’s averaged 27.1 points, 7.5 rebounds and 7.4 assists per game while knocking down 50.5 percent of his shots from the field and 34.6 percent of his attempts from beyond the arc.
He’s a fantastic all-around player that seems to show off something new with each passing game.
Finally becoming teammates again
James and Beverley were teammates for a brief period of time on the Miami Heat in 2010 after James decided to sign with them in free agency. However, their time together was short-lived, as Beverley wound up being cut by the team.
He eventually found his way back to the NBA after having to go overseas for a bit and faced off against James for years. The former No. 1 overall pick recently named Beverley as one of the players he hated playing against but ended up loving after becoming teammates with them.
“There’s three guys — now three — that I hated playing against, and then I became their teammate, and I love them,” James said. “Kendrick Perkins, hated him in Boston. I still hate Boston. Don’t get that twisted. We all hate Boston here. No. 2 was Lance Stephenson, who became my teammate here. And now, Patrick Beverley.”
It will be interesting to see how Beverley does with the Lakers this season. It seems like he had been trying to join the organization for some time.
Over the offseason, he said that the Lakers will make the Western Conference Finals with his leadership.
“No discredit to LeBron James, but he’s doing so much,” Beverley said. “… Who’s their leader? Who’s telling LeBron, ‘Hey LeBron, you gotta be low man, bro. That ain’t your help out. You gotta X-out.’ No one’s telling him that. Not on a consistent basis. I’m gonna tell everyone that because I want to win.”
Now, he has a golden opportunity to prove himself right.