By Kendall Lanier, Staff Reporter
LeBron James has spent the majority of his summer in the NBA Bubble in Orlando, Florida, fighting for an NBA Championship title with the Los Angeles Lakers since July 2020.
This time has brought a multitude of career-defining moments and record-breaking statistics that have added to his team’s success in the bubble. James has recognized this to be one of the toughest championships for him simply because of the circumstances that the world is facing, from the pandemic to the prominent racial injustice in our nation.
Along with other NBA players, James has made sure to use his time wisely in the bubble by using his platform to address America’s racial issues. From advocating for Breonna Taylor, refusing to play in one of the games after Jacob Blake’s shooting, to wearing a variety of clothing with powerful messages on them.
James also is bringing awareness to voting—stressing the importance of creating change and making your vote in the upcoming election.
“Change doesn’t happen with just talk!! It happens with action and needs to happen NOW! … It’s on US to make a difference. Together,” he tweets.
James’ strong performance in the game throughout the finals has led him to receive the title for most playoff wins of all time after winning his 162nd playoff game against the Houston Rockets. With that win, James surpassed Derek Fisher, who held this title before James. From making NBA Finals appearances over the past 8 years, James has collected a considerable amount of wins in overtime.
Along with this achievement, James was selected for the All-NBA Team for the 16th time, leading him to set the NBA record. The record includes 13 First Team selections, two Second Team selections, and one to the Third Team. James passes Kobe Bryant, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and Tim Duncan on this list with 15 selections. The basketball star’s great accomplishments in the bubble have also come with an unexpected outcome.
In the vote for Most Valuable Player (MVP) award, James received only 16 out of 101 first-place votes leading him to take second place. Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks landed on top with 85 first-place votes.
James was very clear on how he felt about this outcome in a press conference and on social media.
He says, “I finished second a lot in my career, either from a championship, now four times as an MVP. I never came into this league saying let me be an MVP or be a champion, I just want to get better and better every single day and those things take care of itself. But some things are just out of my hands, some things you can’t control, but it pissed me off.”
The Lakers are currently up against the Miami Heat for the Championship title. Regardless of everything that has occurred in the Bubble thus far, James remains focused on his goal of winning the Championship and performing at his best.
James is going for his fourth Championship ring and his first with the Lakers.
If there is one thing basketball viewers know about James, it is his strong ability to rise to the occasion. With the NBA finals beginning to come to a close, only time will tell the outcome of James and his team’s performance this season.