LeBron James took to Twitter to react to ESPN’s offseason poll of 10 NBA scouts and executives that left him without a single vote for the NBA’s best player title.
James sarcastically responded to a tweet saying he was finished as a gamer, then sent a separate one to his 50 million Twitter followers announcing that he would be using it as fuel for the upcoming season.
THANK YOU! As if I didn’t need more to⛽️ ME! #Washed👑
– LeBron James (@KingJames) August 19, 2021
In the poll, Milwaukee Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo and Brooklyn Nets star Kevin Durant split the vote evenly among those 10 scouts and executives for the league’s best player title. Antetokounmpo was credited with leading the Bucks to the NBA title and Durant for his heroic performance in Brooklyn’s second-round loss to the Bucks, while his co-stars James Harden and Kyrie Irving suffered injuries as well as his role with Team USA by leading them to a gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics earlier this month.
The only other player considered for a vote was James, and several of those polled openly debated selecting him before finally opting for a different option. The differentiating factor, ultimately, was his combination of age (he will turn 37 in December) and injury, having missed much of two of the past three seasons with the first significant injuries of his first Hall of Fame career. .
This is not uncharted territory. After the Lakers missed the Playoffs in their first season in Los Angeles in 2019, this same poll included 20 people and, again, James did not receive a single vote, with Kawhi Leonard getting 12, Antetokounmpo getting six and Harden getting the other. two.
James responded to that by leading the Lakers to the 2020 NBA title inside the bubble at the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. He was firmly in the discussion for this season’s Most Valuable Player award when he sprained an ankle that paused his season in March. The Lakers lost to eventual Western Conference champion Phoenix Suns in six games in the first round of the Playoffs after James’ Los Angeles co-star, power forward Anthony Davis, suffered a groin strain during Game 4. .
This offseason, the Lakers have tried to prepare for a title run, with the arrival of superstar guard Russell Westbrook and surrounding their new ‘Big Three’ with several high-profile veterans, including Carmelo Anthony and Dwight Howard.