LeBron James has been to NBA Finals the past eight seasons with both the Miami Heat and Cleveland Cavaliers. This season, he doesn’t even have a shot at that.
With a Friday (March 22) loss to the Brooklyn Nets the Los Angeles Lakers have officially been eliminated from the 2019 NBA playoffs. The loss also drops the purple and yellow to 31-41 on the season.
Things were going decently for the Lakers earlier in the season. After beating the Golden State Warriors on Christmas Day, they were in fourth place in the Western Conference and 20-14 overall. That same game though LeBron suffered a groin injury and was forced to be sidelined for a career-long 17 games. During that stretch, L.A. went 6-11 and weren’t able to bounce back once James rejoined the team.
The whole Anthony Davis trade that never happened fiasco also killed team morale as it basically deemed everyone except LeBron as expendable.
The last time a LeBron James-led team didn’t make the playoffs was the 2004/2005 season, the Akron, Ohio native’s second season. After his latest game, LeBron told reporters he wasn’t excited to have extra time off this offseason.
"It's not what we signed up for. Throughout the year, things happened. Suspensions, injuries, things of that nature. And just not being able to play sustainable basketball for 48 minutes," he said. "But you don't even try to wrap your head around it, you just keep pushing. Just try to get better tonight, move onto tomorrow, and go from there."
LeBron James finished the Nets game with almost a triple-double, tallying 25 points, 14 assists and nine rebounds.
Photo: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images
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