LeBron James missed a lot of games for the Los Angeles Lakers this season due to injury. The four-time NBA champ sat out late in the season in what turned out to be one of the most important stretches of the campaign for the Lakers. LeBron eventually returned, but it was too little too late.
For his part, Lakers shooting guard Talen Horton-Tucker recently opened up on the impact of LeBron's injuries on his own play. According to THT, the silver lining of LeBron being forced to miss time is that he is able to take his game to the next level:
“I feel like every situation that I’ve been in is almost like a learning experience,” said the Lakers stud, via Jacob Rude of Silver Screen & Roll. “Being on the ball, off the ball, it’s experience that you need. Obviously I felt better with the ball in my hands and I felt I had success with that, but just learning to play with stars was the most important thing they wanted me to do.”
“During those stretches I got to play a lot more. Bron was out to start, and then to finish the season we had some other guys out. Just the opportunity to have the ball in my hands and play and be at my best… It felt good to actually do that.”
Great players make their teammates better. LeBron has done this throughout his entire career, but quite honestly, this just wasn't the case this past season. For Horton-Tucker, it is clear that the Lakers youngster relishes the opportunity he is given whenever LeBron is in street clothes.