NBA- VERY HEADFUL, VERY UNCOMFORTABLE: “I was so angry. Before facing LeBron, I spent a week….”

“I was so angry. Before facing LeBron, I spent a week….”

La superstar NBA LeBron James, ici sous les couleurs des Cleveland Cavaliers

A scarecrow of the league for a good part of his career, LeBron James has often pushed his opponents to adopt special preparation in order to resist him. A former defensive expert revealed his… which ultimately did not bear fruit at all.

Like any NBA legend, he caused serious headaches for the teams and coaches he faced. LeBron James is indeed one of those players on whom an entire defensive strategy can be based. It only took one or two good defensive performances from one of his opponents against him for the latter to inherit the nickname “LeBron-stopper”.

Tobias Harris, Jae Crowder, Andre Iguodala: all received this label sooner or later. And yet, the King can boast of having signed enormous cards in front of each of them. It must be said that his incredible versatility in attack makes him difficult to muzzle throughout an entire match. This is also the bitter experience experienced by another player who is renowned for his defensive skills.

LeBron James has earned the right to decide his future, says LA Lakers general manager | CNN

Tony Allen’s frustrating experience against LeBron

When James was still playing with the Cavaliers, Memphis was one of the strongest teams in the league defensively. The franchise’s famous “Grit and Grind” mentality was particularly embodied by one player, namely Tony Allen. However, one evening in November 2015, the rough back of the Grizzlies was seriously disillusioned when it came time to face LeBron. He tells ESPN:

He didn’t even try to bump into me. I was angry. I thought he was going to at least try to push me back to the basket on an action. Before facing him, I spent a week grinding away at the gym. I was ready for the challenge.

Certainly frustrated at the moment, the former Memphis pit bull quickly understood that his opponent had made the right choice:

But you know what I saw? I saw his basketball IQ, his intelligence, his maturity. He was like, “Yo, I don’t have anything to prove in this battle between me and T.A. All that matters is that I find openings and ways to score points so that their defense collapses.”

NBA: LeBron James and Anthony Davis lead Los Angeles Lakers fightback against Phoenix Suns - BBC Sport

A refusal of the duel that some often attribute to the supposedly non-existent killer instinct of the Chosen One, but which smiled on him in this encounter.

Indeed, even if he only took 15 shots and only scored 20 points that evening, LBJ emerged as the big winner with the Cavs (111-89). Letting Kyrie Irving (24 points) and Kevin Love (22 points) take the spotlight, he was also able to save himself by playing only 31 minutes of play. This, while Allen finished the game with a differential… of -26, the worst of the two teams.

Prepared for the war he thought he would have to wage against LeBron James, Tony Allen found himself stupid when the latter, as it were, refused it. Instead, the King played it cerebral and collective, which resulted in a blowout inflicted on Memphis.


What's going on with Memphis Grizzlies legend Tony Allen?

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