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How LeBron James can help Lakers land Giannis Antetokounmpo

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Milwaukee Bucks superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo sent the NBA rumor mill buzzing when he hinted at the possibility of playing with his brothers in “Milwaukee, L.A., whatever.”

Los Angeles, of course, is home to both Western Conference powerhouses Lakers and Clippers. But fans and pundits alike are quick to link him to the former. But in order for that to happen, Lakers superstar LeBron James might have to play a major role.

Antetokounmpo, the reigning NBA MVP, is currently on the final year of a 4-year, $100,000,000 contract he signed with the Bucks in the summer of 2017-18 season. The Greek Freak will indeed be the most coveted unrestricted free agent this summer.

Any team who will be pursuing his services will have to break bank and be willing to exceed the salary cap.
lesbron james & colleage
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Enter the Purple and Gold, a franchise with seemingly unlimited resources and continues to be one of the most enticing markets in the league. The Lakers currently have two max players on their roster in James and Anthony Davis.

James is in the second year of four-year, $154 million deal he signed with LA last year. Davis is also a UFA next year, but is wildly expected to re-sign with the Lakers.
Lesbron James all star
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In order to sign Giannis, the Lakers and James likely will have to come up with an agreement of a pay cut of some sort. The same scenario existed for the late Kobe Bryant years ago, but the Black Mamba did not budge during the Lakers’ rebuilding seasons.

James might be willing to bite the bullet, especially if it means landing a third superstar in Antetokounmpo.

The Lakers must also re-sign Kostas and find a way to negotiate a deal for Thanasis to make this a reality.

LeBron James showed off his incredible memory by reciting every detail of the All-Star Game’s ending
Lesbron James and Anthony Davis
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LeBron James has one of sports’ most impressive brains, and his photographic memory continues to amaze no matter how many times we hear about it. Sometimes, we’re even blessed to see him recall an entire series of basketball events, and that was the case at the Lakers’ first practice after the NBA All-Star Weekend.

The All-Star Game was fun as hell for the first time in a long time thanks to a new format that forced both teams to lock to down defensively, and actually draw up plays to win. James recalled the final play that sealed his team’s victory over Team Giannis.

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Here’s what he said:

Coach drew a play in timeout to get a pin-down for Kawhi [Leonard.] He was doing the Toronto vs. Philly game-clincher play where he hit the shot over [Joel] Embiid. They switched out on AD, and two guys went on AD, so Kawhi went to James [Harden.] James drove the baseline and threw it to CP [Chris Paul] in the corner. And then CP drove middle, kicked it back to me. And they were scrambled defensively. For a second I was about to go one-on-one which you saw in the picture that I posted of me and Giannis. Then when I saw Kyle Lowry on Anthony — man I sound crazy calling you Anthony. I’ve been hanging with your family too long they call you Anthony — When I saw Kyle on AD, we made eye-contact and I already knew he was gonna duck in it was just a bang-bang play right there.

Lesbron James all star

And yep, that was spot-on what happened on a play four days prior in a game that meant absolutely nothing.

James did this in the playoffs two years ago
In 2018, during the Eastern Conference Finals, James recited an entire two-minute stretch of the fourth-quarter to media. He had some slight errors, but for the most part, he was spot-on recalling the Celtics’ 7-0 run that featured a Marcus Morris dunk, a Jayson Tatum coast-to-coast layup and several of James’ teammates missing shots.

David Griffin, former general manager of the Cavs, spoke about James’ memory, too
On The Bill Simmons Podcast, Griffin remembered a time when James didn’t just use his memory for Cavs’ success. He told then-Raptors forward Patrick Patterson where to be on a play.

“I was also in the gym when I watched him on the floor against Toronto tell Patrick Patterson where he was supposed to go on the play they had called out of a timeout late in the fourth quarter,” Griffin said. “He was like ‘no Pat, you’re supposed to stand over there and you’re gonna pin-down for DeMar [DeRozan] over here.’”

James’ high school friends hated playing against him in video games

In ESPN’s Brian Windhorst’s piece on James’ mind, he talked to Brandon Weems, one of the superstar’s long-time friends who hated playing against him in video games.

“When we were growing up we used to play this fighting game on the Sega Genesis called Shaq Fu,” said Weems. “LeBron was the only one who had memorized all the moves and so he’d win every time. We all thought he definitely was cheating.”

lebron-james-
That continues to this day.

“When you play Madden with him now you have to be careful which teams you take, because he will know what your game plans were in the past when you’ve played with him and he’ll pick the opposing team knowing what plays you want to run,” Weems said. “You better save your favorite play, too, because he’ll remember what you ran before in situations and be ready for it. Your only hope is to save it until the end and try to surprise him with it.”

Lesbron James

James never ceases to amaze us
James could have been a great NBA player based on his size, athleticism, strength, and skill alone. What has made him arguably the best player in the history of the sport is combining all those traits with a remarkable brain.

James’ memory has been a topic of interest since Windhorst wrote on the subject in 2014. It’s nice to get periodic reminders about just how impressive it is.

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