Whenever LeBron James plays against the Chicago Bulls at the United Center, he usually puts on a show since he’s playing in the house of his idol, Michael Jordan. The LA Lakers superstar has been tormenting the Bulls his entire career, just like Jordan tortured the Cleveland Cavaliers back in the day.
LeBron is universally recognized as the smartest basketball player of all time. For those who don’t believe that to be true, James reminded everyone on Jan. 23 against the Bulls why he deserves that title.
LeBron James loves playing against the Bulls
With the Cavs, Miami Heat, and Lakers, James has career averages of 28.4 points, 7.5 rebounds, and 6.6 assists against the Bulls while shooting 49.9% from the field, 30.8% from beyond the arc, and 73.8% from the free-throw line. The King has never lost to Chicago in the playoffs.
Bulls legend Michael Jordan was LeBron’s favorite player growing up, which is why James wears No. 23. Whenever The Chosen One faces the Bulls, he always seems to have an extra pep in his step. It’s evident that LeBron loves to play against Chicago and dominate them.
During the summer of 2010, James was an unrestricted free agent and almost signed with the Bulls. However, LeBron joined the Heat to create The Big 3 with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh instead. Bulls fans were heartbroken since James took two free-agent meetings with Chicago in 2010.
No one in Chicago will ever pick LeBron James over Michael Jordan in the GOAT debate since MJ went 6-0 in the Finals and won all six Finals MVPs. However, even Bulls fans know that James isn’t too far behind Jordan and is a basketball genius.
LeBron James called out some of the Bulls’ plays ahead of time on Jan. 23
LeBron James and the Lakers defeated the Bulls on Jan. 23 at the United Center by a final score of 101-90. The four-time champion finished with 17 points, 11 rebounds, and six assists, but that wasn’t what everyone talked about after the game ended.
Bulls rookie Patrick Williams told reporters that LeBron was calling out some of the Bulls’ plays ahead of time. The four-time Finals MVP watches more film than anyone in the NBA, so it’s not a surprise to hear this quote from Williams.
It has to be intimidating, though, for opposing players to hear LeBron call out their plays before the sets are run. The future Hall of Famer is a true student of the game and does anything he can to get an advantage over his opponent despite being the NBA’s best player.
Led by LeBron James and Anthony Davis, the Lakers are in first place in the Western Conference standings and look well on their way to repeating as NBA champions.
The King once told a confused Raptors player what play his team was running in the playoffs
In the 2016 Eastern Conference Finals between the Toronto Raptors and Cavs, LeBron James told a Raptors player what play his team was running. Former Toronto star DeMar DeRozan revealed this tidbit on New Orleans Pelicans guard J.J. Reddick’s podcast.
“In ’16 when we went to the Eastern Conference finals, we won Games 3 and 4, and it was like a whole nother mindset clicked for him in those next two games, where it was like ‘it’s closeout.’ I remember — I don’t know if I even told nobody other than my close circle — I remember, it was a play we was trying to run and one of our teammates forgot the play, and ‘Bron told him the play,” DeRozan said, via CBS Sports. “We calling a play and he was like, ‘what?’ And Bron told him what our play was. It just shows you how locked in this dude be when it comes to winning time.”
LeBron James is two rings and two Finals MVPs away from tying Michael Jordan. It’s going to be fascinating to see if the former No. 1 overall pick can catch MJ.
Stats courtesy of Basketball Reference.