LeBron James’ return to the court was short-lived.
After a six-week injury absence, James’ comeback wasn’t able to magically solve the Lakers’ problems as Sunday marked their third loss in a row — their second with James back — and have lost seven of their last 10 contests.
Apparently, James aggravated that high ankle strain again, so he’ll be taken out of the lineup once more. Now that it’s clear the 36-year-old isn’t completely healthy, the Lakers’ chances of winning back-to-back NBA championship titles are looking bleak. Even more so, the team sits at 7th in the West and might not even make it into the playoffs, which has James unhappy.
The NBA play-in tournament that was established last season may be the only way the Lakers can defend their hardware, but James wants no parts.
“At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter if I’m 100% or close to it. It doesn’t matter where we land. If we happen to end up at sixth or fifth or that playoff… thing. Whatever that thing is. Whoever came up with that sh-t needs to be fired,” he pointedly said following Sunday’s 121-114 loss to the Toronto Raptors after being asked about the Lakers path to the playoffs.
James isn’t the first to critique the play in– Luka Doncic and Mark Cuban publicly spoke against it with the latter, saying, “In a regular season of 82 games where we aren’t playing 30-plus games in six weeks, then it might have been OK,” Cuban said. “But the compression of so many games into so few days makes this an enormous mistake.”
The last day of the NBA regular season is May 16, with the play-in running from May 18-21 and the first round of the playoffs tipping off May 22.
Bron Bron’s tune has changed now that his team might have to participate in the play-in because he seemed all for it last season before the NBA bubble began.
That, matched with James tweeted about the best gaming chairs, Twitter had some spice for the future Hall-of-Famer.