Coming into his 19th season in the NBA, it seems that LeBron James always finds a way to defy the odds and maintain a high-level of production year after year with the Lakers. In spite of his previous successes and Hall-Of-Fame career, it leaves one to ask the question: how would a LeBron James farewell tour compare to the legendary Kobe Bryant’s?
Well it would definitely hit different, but it would without question be one of the most memorable farewell tours ever for the first-ballot Hall-Of-Famer. The only other issue with this hypothetical is not knowing when to expect a farewell tour for LeBron, mainly due to the fact that it’s hard to tell when he plans on retiring. Having said all this, let’s take a detailed look at how a LeBron James farewell tour would compare to Kobe Bryant’s 2016 farewell tour.
LeBron James reflections:
The stakes would be higher than ever
With LeBron James’ championship window closing and him entering the latter years of his playing career, every season from here on out is championship or bust. This means that in his last year playing in the NBA, the stakes for him to win another title and go out on top would be higher than ever. The King would aim to retire as a champion and end his playing career on an all-time high while looking to elevate his place in Lakers lore.
With his farewell tour, every single game during both the regular season and playoffs would be a can’t miss match-up that’s bound to be unforgettable for LeBron James. During his farewell tour, the pressure would be on, but he would also be admired and appreciated along the way for all of his epic performances and off-the-court endeavors throughout his illustrious career. Which would be very similar to how Kobe Bryant went out in his final season.
King James would have to do a ton of load management
Back in 2016, as LeBron James knows, Lakers head coach Byron Scott did a perfect job of managing Kobe’s minutes and making sure he was healthy enough to make it through the entirety of his final season as injury-free as humanly possible. This preservation would pay off big time, especially during the regular season finale, when Kobe Bryant dropped 60 points against a gritty Utah Jazz defense.
When it comes to LeBron James, they would definitely be taking precautionary measures to ensure he would be able to stay healthy all season long, but also because LeBron would want to be refreshed and ready to go once the playoffs started. Frank Vogel would definitely utilize load management to the fullest during LeBron’s final year and try to get the most out of him while limiting his minutes during the regular season.
So that way he’d be able to ensure that LeBron James would be ready to roll for his final playoff run and quest to win one more NBA title to finish out his long-tenured and legendary NBA career. If there’s one thing James has done to perfection throughout his career, it’s taking care of his body and doing the right amount of rest and rehab to give himself plenty of preparation for the upcoming season. So adding to this remedy for one last title run wouldn’t be much of a challenge at all for the 4-time league MVP.