LeBron James Shuts Down Demands Of Today’s Kids With JJ Redick: “Not Jordan vs Bird Nintendo”

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It’s Tuesday! That means it’s time for another episode of the Mind the Game podcast with LeBron James and JJ Redick. The second episode of the basketball-centric podcast featured a conversation between two basketball enthusiasts who delved into the challenging offensive maneuvers to defend in the league and the most successful approaches to counter them. One such segment saw James express his frustration with the one-on-one mindset some younger NBA players tend to have.
The conversation started with JJ Redick asserting that basketball is about drawing multiple defenders to open up scoring opportunities for teammates. LeBron James echoed Redick’s sentiment, pinpointing a trend among younger players who view basketball as a series of isolated one-on-one matchups, likening it to the iconic video game Jordan vs. Bird: One on One on Nintendo.
“Everyone now has a narrative of this thing called, ‘I have a bag,” or ‘He doesn’t have a bag.’ It bothers the f–k out of me. Everyone thinks just because you get a favorable matchup that it means it’s one-on-one time. ‘Let’s play ones.’ That’s all you hear the kids talk about now. What the f–k is this? This is not Jordan vs. Bird Nintendo. It’s five-on-five,” said the 39-year-old.
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James further highlighted that while it’s okay to capitalize on favorable matchups when the opportunity presents itself, great teams often send extra defenders to stop you. And when that happens, the key is to make intelligent reads and involve teammates. Unfortunately, some players only care about scoring by themselves and don’t focus on learning to play as part of a team. “Most great teams are going to send help, and can you make the right reads? Can you instill confidence in your teammates when you’ve scored twice in that favorable matchup? Do you know that the double is coming? … Some guys don’t wanna learn and won’t learn because they just wanna play ones,” lamented James.
What made LeBron James start his own podcast?
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For James, Mind the Game is all about getting back to the basics of basketball that he feels modern sports media has lost touch with in its league coverage. “I feel like we were losing the essence of the game of basketball and the true meaning behind the game, teaching our youth, and teaching people what the game of basketball truly means,” James told Jovan Buha of The Athletic after the Lakers’ 150-145 victory over the Indiana Pacers on Sunday.
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Fed up with content focused on debates designed to generate headlines and views rather than educate viewers about the sport, James decided to take matters into his own hands, leading to the creation of Mind the Game. What are your thoughts on the second episode of Mind the Game? Let us know in the comments!
Read More: Anxiety Drains LeBron James’ Mental State, Courtesy Of Son Bronny & NCAA’s Ground Reality

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