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Lakers’ LeBron James claims winning an assist title has never been a goal of his

Lakers, LeBron James

Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James has always been known as an assist machine, and this season, his 17th, is no different. In fact, The King is currently leading the NBA in the passing department, but winning that title has never been his goal.

James is off to a great start to this season. In his 11 games played thus far, the former No. 1 overall pick has racked up averages of 23.9 points on 47.6 percent shooting from the field (30.4 percent from beyond the arc), a league-leading and career-high 11.1 assists, 8.0 rebounds and 1.1 steals in 34.5 minutes per outing.

But, again, he’s not really focused on being the assist king:

“I don’t know,” James said recently, via Dave McMenamin of ESPN. “That’s never been a goal of mine. … The assist has always been my favorite because it gives my teammates an opportunity to score. And that’s what’s always mattered to me.”

James is constantly looking to get other players involved. In the early stages of his career, he led the struggling Cavaliers to prominence. Along the way, he elevated the play of some of his lesser-known teammates. It’s an admirable trait — one that Lakers great Magic Johnson had as well.

Though he’s a small forward, James often plays like a point guard. With the Lakers, this aspect of his game has been on full display, and he’s once again finding his teammates for open looks:

“He’s going to make the right play every time and he delivers the ball on time, on target everywhere or just about everywhere he throws it — to the 3-point line or lobs at the rim or back cuts or whatever,” Lakers coach Frank Vogel said, via ESPN. “He’s just one of the best passers I’ve been around.”

James and the Lakers will look to build on their two-game winning streak in Friday’s matchup against the Sacramento Kings. Tip-off inside Staples Center is set for 10:30 p.m. ET.