LeBron James knows that people are talking about reported tension between Los Angeles Lakers team president Magic Johnson and coach Luke Walton.
But James doesn’t want to hear it. He says he is focused on blocking out the noise and winning as many games as possible in his first season in Los Angeles.
“It doesn’t bother me at all because I don’t pay attention to it, I don’t listen to it,” James said Saturday in comments published by ESPN before the Lakers played the Portland Trail Blazers. “It actually never even gets to me really, so it’s not a big deal for us.
“We need to figure out how we can string together some great games or even good games and bring our win total from where it is now. Because that’s the business we’re in. That’s the only thing we want to do. We want to be as good a team as we can be and win ballgames.”
The Lakers started the season 3-5, and a recent two-game skid reportedly prompted Johnson to chide Walton for the team’s performance. The tense meeting highlighted Walton’s tenuous job security and showed the need for the Lakers to find success soon in order to avoid changes, ESPN reported.
James, 33, has averaged 27.8 points and 8.6 rebounds in his first eight games with the Lakers.
“We’re still in the real early stages,” James said. “But we are much more of a unit today than we were two weeks ago. So I think we’ll be even better two weeks from now, and two weeks from then.
“I think every game, every road trip, every film session, every day that we’re together is going to continue to get us more and more familiar with one another. You just have to learn each other and know what to expect out of one another, how to challenge each other.”
—Field Level Media