Throughout his illustrious career, LeBron James has experienced a tremendous amount of individual and team success along the way. James has also had some notable disappointments in his career, falling short of the ultimate goal of winning NBA title in many of his trips to the NBA Finals. Although he has established himself as one of the greatest players to play the game, there are times where he was tested mentally that challenged his passion for basketball. With that in mind, James recently revealed an instance where that devotion to the game broke.
LeBron James’ NBA journey
Since entering the league, James has put together an impressive NBA career that features many different records and individual awards that stack him up against the greatest players to play the game.
He has continued that march towards further ingraining himself in the record books in the latter years of his career that have seen him put forth some remarkable feats. James has been a game-changing talent that the league hasn’t seen before and has fulfilled and surpassed the massive hype that was around him before getting into the NBA.
But, it hasn’t all been gratifying for James as he experienced some tough lows that tested his commitment to the game.
How LeBron James lost his passion for the game
Following his eight-year stint with the Cleveland Cavaliers, James had elected to join forces with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh with the Miami Heat to compete for NBA titles.
The newly formed Big 3 found a great deal of success together that saw them make a trip to the NBA Finals in all four years together, including earning a pair of NBA titles. However, James recently revealed that falling short in the 2011 NBA Finals against the Dallas Mavericks that was headlined by his struggles on the court, put him through a tough period of his career.
Miami was the heavy favorite heading into that series, but they fell in disappointing fashion, dropping four straight games after winning the first two games. Much of the criticism came in James’ direction as he struggled tremendously in the fourth quarter and his overall lack of strong production posting no more 24 points in any game while notching just eight points in Game 4 of the series. The bulk of that was centered on his lackluster play in the fourth quarter as he tallied only 18 total points in all six fourth quarters in the series.
All of this mounted into some major backlash thrown at James that had a significant impact on him mentally. At the same time, it allowed him to refocus and regather himself to better prepare himself for the scrutiny around him on and off the court. In many ways, it has helped shaped his career from that point on.
LeBron James still atop his game
In his 17th year in the league, James has shown no slowing down or notable decline in his game in his second campaign with the Los Angeles Lakers. Instead, he has been one of their driving forces alongside star forward Anthony Davis behind their hot start out of the gate, holding the best record in the Western Conference through the first quarter of the season.
The 34-year-old has been putting together a resurgent year after last season was impacted greatly by a groin injury. James is currently leading the league with 10.8 assists per contest, while his overall play has him pegged as one of the early favorites to win the MVP award.
There is still plenty of the regular season to be played, but James looks rejuvenized while the Lakers could be in a promising position to compete for an NBA title. Beyond all of that, his stellar play would suggest that he still has much left in the tank to perform at an elite level and contend for championships at this stage of his career.