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Column: Lakers make necessary but dangerous decision to end LeBron James’ minutes restriction


He is supposed to be getting old.

LeBron James raced down the court for a thundering layup to give the Lakers their first fourth-quarter lead.

He is supposed to be getting tired.

LeBron James grabbed a rebound, stole a pass and scored on two more rumbling layups to give the Lakers the fourth-quarter lead they never lost.


Two nights into what could be the final hurrah of LeBron James’ career, the 38-year-old wonder played every second of the fourth quarter, totaled 35 minutes instead of the planned 30 or fewer, and, whew, good thing, because the Lakers needed his every breath in a 100-95 victory over the seriously short-handed Phoenix Suns on Thursday in their Crypto.com Arena home opener.

“It’s a great show to watch,” wide-eyed new guard Gabe Vincent said.

It’s a fun show to watch. It’s an inspirational show to watch. But by the time this journey has traveled 82 games into the spring, it could be a painful show to watch.


The Lakers may have to run James into the ground because they feel they don’t have a choice. The Lakers may have to risk his health because they realize there’s no other way.

The Lakers and James entered this season with plans to put James on that minutes restriction in hopes of keeping him sound for the playoffs. But if Thursday is any indication, any long-term plans are completely fluid, putting James’ seasonally tortured body and the Lakers’ championship hopes at risk.


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1 comentario


Amankwa Konadu
Amankwa Konadu
02 nov 2023

It's true they cant over use him.

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