LeBron James has won two NBA championships with the Miami Heat. But what he no longer has is 20 shots per game and he is jealous that Kevin Durant does.
In an interview with Tom Haberstroh of ESPN.com, James explains why he wishes his game was more like Durant’s:
“I get jealous sometimes when I look over at KD and he’s like 16-for-32 (from the field) and then 14-for-34…I’m not much of a forced-shot guy…But there are games where I have it going, and then at the end of the game, I’m like, damn, I shot just 12-for-16? Why don’t I get up at least six or seven more? I definitely notice it…First of all, you have to have an unbelievable mindset to get up 30 shots…I always think about it, though. If I get up high-20s, 30 shots a game, what could I do today, with the way I’m playing?”
LeBron’s shooting has taken a hit since he took his talents to South Beach. In seven seasons with the Cleveland Cavaliers, James averaged 20.8 shots per game, while Durant is averaging 19.4 shots per game this season. With the Heat, James’ shots have slowly declined, from 18.8 shots per game in his first season, to just 16.1 shots per game this year.
As a result, James is averaging 26.0 points per game, his lowest mark since his rookie season (20.9 points per game) despite shooting a career-high 59.1% from the field.
Of course, the problem with his statement is that if Durant were given the choice, he would probably give up his shots in a heartbeat for a pair of championships. However, this does show that James is not completely happy with his reduced offensive role.
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