My understanding of the reason for certain things LeBron James does and says has reached an all-time low after he admitted to being jealous of the amount of shots Kevin Durant gets to take for the Oklahoma City Thunder.
“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… Man,” James told ESPN.com’s Tom Haberstroh.
One could easily overlook James’ comments and misinterpret them as praise towards the NBA‘s leading scorer. I challenged the common belief of the bias James fans that flood social media whenever their “King” takes a breath. What I realized was that this was no form of praise, but more a stone cold and cowardly diss from one superstar to another.
I cannot even begin to fathom why James felt the need to touch the subject, but then I started to dwell a bit deeper. Jame’s scoring is down (26.0), while Durant has led the NBA in scoring (29.8) since opening night, in which he dropped an amazing 42 points in a win on the road against the Utah Jazz. I read between the lines and found a player who felt like he needed to justify the fact that Durant has led the league in scoring in four of the last five seasons, finishing second place last year.
What makes this whole story even more incomprehensible is the fact that James does not have anything to prove. He is a two-time NBA Champion and four-time MVP. Why does he feel the need to throw his friend under the bus in a weak attempt to save face with his own following? I have news for you, James — your followers are madly in love with you. You could miss an entire year and they’d still say you were the MVP and feel like they have a strong case to back their opinion. It is odd, but you are an odd one yourself, James. Your statements downplaying KD’s shot attempts may be accepted as praise to most, but people like me can see through the thick cloud of smoke you are blowing.
If James feels like the only reason he is scoring less than Durant is due to shot attempts, then maybe he should do something about it. I would think that such a highly respected player would have that option to do so without question from anyone within the Miami Heat‘s organization — or am I missing something? Has James been a puppet this entire time? His comments make it seem plausible. Maybe he does not have as much control as we have come to believe he has as the leader of the Heat. I mean, It would be odd that he’d have to bow down to Pat Riley, but his ego just seems too large to put restraints on his game, brand and image as a role model for teenagers worldwide.
James needs to man up and accept the fact that no matter how hard he tried, he could never be a better pure scorer than Durant. I do not want to sound like I doubt his abilities; I want it to be clear that I have much more faith in KD’s offensive dominance at this point of their careers. The numbers even show that the difference in shot attempts is not much different. According to NBA.com, Durant comes through with 35.8 percent of the Thunder’s points as a team. James produces 32.4 percent. Durant takes 30.1 percent of his team’s field goal attempts, while James takes a close 28.3 percent. Numbers never lie and they show that James is not jealous, but he is insecure and trying to do and say anything possible to continue to be hailed as the NBA’s most dominant offensive weapon.
The truth is clearer than ever and James knows it. With a recent scoring outburst and his overall growth as a NBA player, Durant is inching closer to the King’s crown and he will not need a ring to snatch it away from James’ ever-fading hairline.