LeBron James is widely viewed as the best player of our basketball era, and there's no doubt that he has been on top of the league for the majority of his career. He is without a doubt a superstar who can be the offensive engine that gets a team to the Finals.
Despite his ability, there is no doubt that playing with LeBron James has its challenges. Due to his brand and the fan attention he commands, his team is consistently in the spotlight from the media.
Kevin Love has recently opened up on playing on a LeBron James-led team that is heavily scrutinized. Love was notably teammates with James on the Cavaliers, and his analysis is particularly relevant due to the state of the Los Angeles Lakers, who have been criticized as an underperforming team.
Bron has a gravitational pull. Everybody, the media, people that love him, people that hate him, people that love the Lakers, people that hate the Lakers. Everybody focuses on that, so any step in the wrong direction and people will just take that and keep grinding away on it. It's tough."
"Everybody expects the Lakers to do great things especially with having a Big 3. Even with AD being out, they expect big things from him. I've played with Bron and we were under a lot of scrutiny as well in Cleveland and we had great expectations. People were saying Finals or championship or bust. Every little misstep or lose three in a row or hovering around .500, it's just a dozen different storylines, it's a soap opera. People always got to have stuff to talk about 24/7, 365 media presence. If not, you're not going to get your ratings. It's just a fact."
"Like JJ said, he's the greatest player of our generation. And in the GOAT talks, people are going to follow his every move. So his team, if someone is underperforming or someone is messing up the Lakers season, so they say they are going to be the scapegoat.
There is no question that there was a lot of pressure on the Cavaliers to win a title while LeBron James was there, just as there is that pressure on the Los Angeles Lakers this year.
The Lakers are notably not doing well currently, so naturally, there has been a lot of negative attention. Many people have pointed to Russell Westbrook as a source of the team's issues, and some have even suggested that the Lakers need to trade him to get better. While he hasn't been doing spectacularly, the Lakers have other problems besides his play.
We'll see what direction the Los Angeles Lakers elect to take. Whether it is a trade or staying put, hopefully, we see them play some better basketball in the coming weeks. There's still time to improve, but the clock is definitely ticking.