Infotainment Factory: Playing with Lebron is 'toxic': Durant

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Wednesday, 5 December 2018

Playing with Lebron is 'toxic': Durant


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NBA superstar Kevin Durant has revealed why he believes star players are reluctant to join Lebron James at the LA Lakers, claiming external factors make playing with Lebron “toxic”.

James has the Lakers in fifth position in the western conference standings and the club has structured its salary cap to make sure it would have space next summer for another star on maximum salary—whether it be via free agency or trade.

Durant along with a host of other stars will hit free agency at the end of this season, and speculation surrounding his future has followed the Warriors star all year.

Durant has been linked to the Lakers, Clippers and the Knicks but he gave the strongest indication yet that he will not join forces with James at the Lakers.

“So much hype comes from being around LeBron from other people,” Durant told The Bleacher report.

“He has so many fanboys in the media. Even the beat writers just fawn over him. I’m like, we’re playing basketball here, and it’s not even about basketball at certain points. So I get why anyone wouldn’t want to be in that environment because it’s toxic.

“Especially when the attention is bulls–t attention, fluff. It’s not LeBron’s fault at all; it’s just the fact you have so many groupies in the media that love to hang on every word. Just get out of the way and let us play basketball.”

Durant said it wasn’t just the distracting influences on the periphery that makes playing with Lebron difficult, fitting into James’ style is also an integral part of being on his team.

“Kevin Love had to totally change his game to fit, to be a shooter,” he said.

“Which, I think, he deserves way more credit for switching his game. [Chris] Bosh, same way. LeBron is a player that needs to play with guys that already know how they play the game — and shooters.

“Like, young players that are still developing, it’s always going to be hard because he demands the ball so much, he demands control of the offense and he creates for everybody.”

The two-time finals MVP said success has come to Lebron because he’s been situated with the right players that fit his style and personality.

“It depends on what kind of player you are,” Durant, 30, said when asked about what it would be like to play alongside James.

“If you’re Kyle Korver, then it makes sense. Because Kyle Korver in Atlanta was the bulk of the offence, and he’s not a No. 1 option at all, not even close. So his talents benefit more from a guy who can pass and penetrate and get him open.

“If you’re a younger player like a Kawhi [Leonard], trying to pair him with LeBron James doesn’t really make sense. Kawhi enjoys having the ball in his hands, controlling the offence, dictating the tempo with his post-ups; it’s how he plays the game. A lot of young players are developing that skill. They don’t need another guy.”

NBA superstar Kevin Durant has revealed why he believes star players are reluctant to join Lebron James at the LA Lakers, claiming external factors make playing with Lebron “toxic”.

James has the Lakers in fifth position in the western conference standings and the club has structured its salary cap to make sure it would have space next summer for another star on maximum salary—whether it be via free agency or trade.

Durant along with a host of other stars will hit free agency at the end of this season, and speculation surrounding his future has followed the Warriors star all year.

Durant has been linked to the Lakers, Clippers and the Knicks but he gave the strongest indication yet that he will not join forces with James at the Lakers.

“So much hype comes from being around LeBron from other people,” Durant told The Bleacher report.

“He has so many fanboys in the media. Even the beat writers just fawn over him. I’m like, we’re playing basketball here, and it’s not even about basketball at certain points. So I get why anyone wouldn’t want to be in that environment because it’s toxic.

“Especially when the attention is bulls–t attention, fluff. It’s not LeBron’s fault at all; it’s just the fact you have so many groupies in the media that love to hang on every word. Just get out of the way and let us play basketball.”

Durant said it wasn’t just the distracting influences on the periphery that makes playing with Lebron difficult, fitting into James’ style is also an integral part of being on his team.

“Kevin Love had to totally change his game to fit, to be a shooter,” he said.

“Which, I think, he deserves way more credit for switching his game. [Chris] Bosh, same way. LeBron is a player that needs to play with guys that already know how they play the game — and shooters.

“Like, young players that are still developing, it’s always going to be hard because he demands the ball so much, he demands control of the offense and he creates for everybody.”

The two-time finals MVP said success has come to Lebron because he’s been situated with the right players that fit his style and personality.

“It depends on what kind of player you are,” Durant, 30, said when asked about what it would be like to play alongside James.

“If you’re Kyle Korver, then it makes sense. Because Kyle Korver in Atlanta was the bulk of the offence, and he’s not a No. 1 option at all, not even close. So his talents benefit more from a guy who can pass and penetrate and get him open.

“If you’re a younger player like a Kawhi [Leonard], trying to pair him with LeBron James doesn’t really make sense. Kawhi enjoys having the ball in his hands, controlling the offence, dictating the tempo with his post-ups; it’s how he plays the game. A lot of young players are developing that skill. They don’t need another guy.”

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