Lakers Rumors: Los Angeles Lakers Privately Concerned About LeBron James

Jonathan Sherman
4 Min Read

When the Los Angeles Lakers signed LeBron James as a free agent this past summer, many assumed that it was just a matter of time before he brought another NBA championship to L.A.

Less than a full season into his tenure with the Lakers, however, a recent report from Joe Vardon of The Athletic indicates that the Lakers may be worried about not only James’ health, but his state of mind as well.

“The Lakers are privately a little concerned about LeBron,” Vardon wrote. “Is he fully healed from the groin strain that cost him a career-worst 18 games? Is he going to pick up his intensity and propel this team back into the playoffs, as he did last year in Cleveland? James, 34, is actually averaging a triple double for the Lakers since his return from injury (23.2 points, 10.8 rebounds, 11.0 assists), but he’s just not moving at the same speed nor is he engaging at the point of attack. That fourth-quarter moment in a loss to the Hawks on Wednesday in which Trae Young switched onto LeBron, and instead of taking the much smaller Young off the dribble LeBron casually threw the ball to Brandon Ingram in the corner? There are several examples like this.”

Despite the concern, James made it clear that he is feeling good entering the last leg of the 2018-19 campaign.

“I feel great,” James said Sunday, after posting 19 points and eight rebounds in his NBA-record 15th consecutive All-Star start. “Looking forward to the second half of the season. Looking forward to seeing what we can do to get back in this playoff race. That’s my only mindset. That’s the only thing that’s going to happen in my mental space for these next two months, pretty much on how I can get this team playing the type of level of basketball we were playing before my injury.”

James is currently in his 16th season in the NBA and there is no doubt that his extended prime can’t last forever. Still, for Lakers fans everywhere, the fact that the organization is worried about their lone star is horrible news.

It’s no secret that the Lakers have tried and failed to lure multiple All-Stars to Los Angeles either through free agency or through the trade market.

Most recently, a failed attempt to trade for New Orleans Pelicans star Anthony Davis has created potential fissures in the Lakers locker room between James and players such as Lonzo Ball and Brandon Ingram.

In the end, it seems clear that the 2018-19 season won’t result in much for James and the Lakers.

What they are able to accomplish this summer when it comes to surrounding James with talent will probably have a lot to do with how concerned they have to be about his mindset going forward.

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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.