LeBron James is living some sweet moments with the Los Angeles Lakers after defeating the Houston Rockets in five games in the West semis series. The purple and gold did a terrific job against James Harden and company, blowing out the Texans on more than one occasion during the series. Their elite defense played a huge role in those results and now the Californians are in the Western Conference Finals.
They have been great on the offense but their defense has also been great. LeBron reflected on the Lakers’ defense this postseason, pointing out that they have some of the best defensive players in the league, which makes things easier for them. Bron compared the Lakers’ D to his former squads, the Heat and Cavs, explaining the difference and similarities between the three teams.
“I’ve been a part of a lot of great defensive teams,” James said, per Anthony Slater of The Athletic. “Mike Brown was a defensive coach, and we played some exceptional basketball on the defensive end my early days in Cleveland. In Miami, we flew around. We weren’t the biggest team, but we had great length, great speed and (Erik Spoelstra) challenged us to use our speed to cover the interior and get out to the exterior as well. So we flew around.
“But this (Lakers team) is a really good defensive team, too. We have multiple first-team all-defensive players. We have Defensive Players of the Year in A.D. and Dwight (Howard). Before the shutdown, Avery (Bradley) has been a part of so many first-team, second-team defenses. Danny was on a team last year. I’m not quite sure if I’ve been on any, but I know what I can do on the defensive end. We fly around. We protect each other.”
To put things into perspective, the Portland Trail Blazers were the best offense in the league entering the bubble. The Lakers beat them in five games. The Houston Rockets were one of the best defensive squads heading to the postseason and the result was the same.
This team is well assembled, they have the pieces to stop anybody and they showed that against Damian Lillard, CJ McCollum, Russell Westbrook and James Harden. Now the challenge will be either the Clippers or the Nuggets, but LeBron is confident that his team has the tools to stop anybody.