One-eyed LeBron James has now entered NBA lore as one of the greatest superstar alter egos in league history. The Los Angeles Lakers star joins Hoodie Carmelo Anthony, Untucked Kyrie Irving, and Jersey-Biting Kobe Bryant as some of the more iconic figures.
As much as fans sensationalized James’ handicap, hitting the dagger over Stephen Curry to beat the Warriors with one eye and playing with a gimpy leg, Laker Nation would rather have a fully healthy LeBron. The King in his healthiest form is probably already the best version of himself, after all. Alter egos be damned.
James himself spoke to the media about his health, with the Lakers star remaining adamant that there was nothing to be concerned about, per Lakers beat reporter Harrison Faigen.
“I’m good. I told you guys I was good. I’m good. That’s the most minutes I’ve played in a long time and I didn’t feel anything on that play. Draymond’s finger or thumb or whatever went directly into my eye, and that’s why I was down,” James said. “Just making sure I was okay, making sure I wasn’t bleeding and making sure I could see a little bit at least so I could finish the game.”
But of course, James could very well just be trying to downplay his injury. ESPN’s Marc Spears reported that there was indeed cause for concern, and that the Lakers star was not playing at full strength in the first place.
"We need to be concerned about LeBron James. He was supposed to be the PG. I'm hearing he's playing on one leg" 👀
—@MarcJSpears #NBA #NBATwitter #TheJump #LakeShow https://t.co/Axm7CuLPvS
— 𝐓𝐚𝐥𝐤𝐢𝐧' 𝐍𝐁𝐀 (@_Talkin_NBA) May 20, 2021
It’s going to be a safe bet that LeBron James will suit up for the Lakers as they take on the Phoenix Suns. However, it still remains to be seen if he’ll be playing at full strength. Game 1 is on Sunday.