NBA season preview: Warriors bid for back-to-back titles and LeBron eyes scoring record
LeBron James was the MVP of the 2015-16 NBA season, and he’ll be back in the playoffs this spring, which means there’s more attention on his scoring record.
But his teammates will be too busy in the opening rounds of 2016 to give him a free pass.
The Cavaliers and 76ers will do everything they can to thwart him and his Cleveland teammates. To do that, they’ll need to contain him physically and put extra emphasis on the defensive end. If they don’t, everyone from LeBron’s teammates on the Sixers to his coach to his former high school coach to the Warriors, will all have a chance to beat him.
It’s worth noting that some of the best high school shooting guards in history, such as Jordan Hill and Tony Parker, were the product of excellent defensive coverages.
“If you’re playing in the NBA, the defense is going to be what’s on the court,” Irving said Wednesday. “That’s all they’re going to look at. … If you can get in the paint, you can score, you can get the steals, you can do all the things.
“If you can’t do that, there’s a chance that you’re going to get stopped. And if you get stopped, there’s a chance you can get beat. It’s always going to be that way.”
Irving’s statement wasn’t necessarily meant to be an indictment of any individual player, but it’s fair to see the impact of a great defensive team. And if the Sixers can figure it out, it could have an impact on a couple other franchises in the Eastern Conference, too.
With a team full of talent and depth, it is entirely possible for a defense to stop LeBron from trying to score in the final seconds of the fourth quarter.
If the defending champion Warriors don’