Los Angeles Lakers star forward LeBron James has been forced to overcome a heavy workload since the absence of Anthony Davis. Despite this, head coach Frank Vogel believes that James will be able to power through.
Per Bill Oram of The Athletic, Vogel doesn’t seem too bothered that James played over 40 minutes again in their overtime loss to the Washington Wizards on Monday.
Frank Vogel on how LeBron James is handling his workload: “He’s a workhorse. He’s doing everything he can for us.”
— Bill Oram (@billoram) February 23, 2021
The game marked the Lakers’ foray into overtime period for the fourth time this year. Note that the Lakers had to endure three straight games that went to an extended period.
Statistics reveal that James is averaging 34.7 minutes per game—the second lowest in his career after his 34.6 minutes per game last season. This is a careful measure that Vogel and the coaching staff have been following. While James doesn’t seem to be slowing down, the unpredictable can still happen. Besides, a fatigued James in the playoffs won’t boost the Lakers’ chances of defending their title.
However, Anthony Davis’ recent injury has forced Frank Vogel to rely on LeBron James for most of the team’s offensive chores. Whenever AD is on the floor, the offensive playbook is simplified: give it to Davis and let him work. But over the past few games, the offense almost always revolves around LeBron. It’s a position that he’s very used to, but Lakers fans are starting to worry about his long-term health–as well as the three-straight losses.