Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James insists he feels physically fine and all the talk about him needing more time is unccessary. James, who turned 36 in December, is having another big season as he is averaging 25.8 points, 8.2 rebounds and 8.1 assists.
Lakers star big man Anthony Davis will be out for several weeks and the bigger responsibility is on James to deliver and help the team win games. "I think this whole narrative of 'LeBron needs more rest' or I should take more rest or I should take time here, it's become a lot bigger than what it actually is," James said.
"I've never talked about it, I don't talk about it, I don't believe in it. We all need more rest, s---. This is a fast turnaround from last season, and we all wish we could have more rest. But I'm here to work, I'm here to punch my clock in and be available to my teammates.
"And if I'm hurt or if I'm not feeling well, then we can look at it then. But I have nothing but honest people [advising me], but I'm also honest with myself, as well, and me having a love for the game and me being able to be available to my teammates is more important than anything."
James missed a key free throw
On Monday night in Los Angeles, the Lakers suffered a 127-124 overtime loss to the Washington Wizards. With 9.8 seconds left to play in the game, James tied the game at 115-115 and had a free-throw to give the Lakers a one-point lead but he missed.
"Obviously, I take full responsibility [for] missing that free throw," James said. "I got to make the free throw up there; it's an easy point for us. But we didn't lose the game there. But I take that responsibility, for sure, and I got to be better."
Despite being 36, James is still playing at an extremely high level and he is an MVP candidate. "I have never asked for time off or time throughout the season. And it's growing to a point where it's not even coming from me anymore.
It's just like, 'OK, LeBron should take time off' or 'Why is his workload at this?' I've been hearing it for five, six, seven years now, and I'm still going strong. So I don't need a handout, I'm not looking for a handout; my job is to go out when I'm available, when I'm healthy to go out and play, and that's what it's all about,'' James said.