Don’t look now, but LeBron James, soon to be 37 years old, has been playing MVP-caliber basketball for the Los Angeles Lakers as of late.

LeBron has dropped 30 points or more in six of his past eight games. He has averaged 29.8 points (52% shooting), 7.3 rebounds and 8.0 assists during that span. The Lakers (15-13) have won five of seven contests.

LeBron’s latest masterpiece came in the Lakers’ easy 106-94 win over the Orlando Magic on Sunday. James didn’t just put up 30 points, 11 rebounds, 10 assists, and three (magnificent) blocks — his 35th career 30-point triple-double — he dazzled on centerstage as few others can.

In doing so, he surpassed Kobe Bryant, one of the few NBA stars with comparable stage presence, to become the oldest player in NBA history to record a 30-point triple-double.

LeBron was dialed in from the jump — like an A-list movie star after the director says action. He dominated every facet of the game — whipping passes, orchestrating action, chase-down blocking, generally flying around — while making sure to command the arena.

He flexed and showboated, fired up the crowd before timeouts, and weirdly put on Wendell Carter Jr.’s goggles. He was everywhere, doing everything.

These are those LeBron/Kobe/Magic/MJ/Steph nights — when the performative nature of the sport is not just about having fun (though that’s part of it), nor hammering home one’s unmatched excellence (though that’s part of it); it’s about loudly sapping the other team of any hope (“Oh, damn. LeBron is showing out tonight”) while instilling reciprocal confidence in his teammates (“Oh, damn. LeBron is showing out tonight.”)

Arguably, the Magic win was LeBron’s most energized wire-to-wire performance of the 2021-22 season, and it culminated in the Lakers’ second straight refreshingly breezy outing (both without Anthony Davis, who is dealing with knee soreness.)

“He was spectacular, again,” Frank Vogel lauded. “He’s exemplifying ‘finding joy through hustle.’ And how it’s really fun to pour it all out there on the floor and inspire your whole group.”

LeBron was especially dominant in the Lakers’ 36-10 third quarter, which continues to be a weakness-turned-strength for the Lakers. The Lakers went on a 23-0 run in the period — their most prolonged scoring run of the season. LeBron had 13 points in the quarter. According to the Lakers’ PR department, Orlando’s 2-for-23 third quarter was the lowest field goal percentage (8.7%) in any quarter vs. the Lakers since 1999.

Since he took over the building in Indiana — going Big Balls, Silencer, and even determining which fans could sit courtside — James has repeatedly cited his recuperating health as the biggest factor in his improved play. However, after Sunday’s stellar lead performance, LeBron revealed three other key secrets to the spring(hill) in his step.

Why LeBron James is looking like an MVP again

1) Sleep

In LeBron’s commercial for the Calm app, James utters the tagline: “Greatness lies on the other side of sleep.”

Conveniently, for his portfolio and the Lakers, there’s no better advertisement for Calm than the basketball LeBron has recently been playing. After trouncing Orlando, LeBron credited the ZZZs as a genesis for his two-way bounciness.

“Getting the optimal rest, getting into the REM sleep,” he said in his walk-off interview.

“Got some pretty good sleep in OKC the night we got in and the day of the game,” he added in his postgame remarks. “Got some more sleep today and was able to come in with some energy and put it on the floor.”

When specifically asked what a good night sleep for LeBron James looks like, the four-time MVP gave an enviable answer.

“I slept last night from 12 to 8. I got up, ate breakfast and went back to sleep from 8:30 to 12:30. Pretty good, right?”

(Although, as three-time champion and Hall of Famer James Worthy let us know, there are other routes to greatness on the hardwood.)

2) Dad-ing

On Saturday, LeBron traveled to see Bronny and Sierra Canyon defeat California rival Chatsworth. Despite logging the extra miles, the Old Man said witnessing his son play ball was igniting.

“Sleep and inspiration from my son and his team,” James said when asked what energized his play. “Getting the opportunity to fly down to Phoenix last night to see my son play ball — he inspires me. I feel really good waking up today after watching him and his team last night. … I got some energy from that.”

3) Experience

Sleep and family directly affected Orlando’s hopes of escaping Los Angeles with a W. Of course, LeBron has been at this thing for a long, long time.

“How do I continue how I’m playing? Been doing it for 19 years,” LeBron stated. “Just do what I’ve been doing. I feel like I’m getting better and better each and every day.”

21-year-old Talen Horton-Tucker, who tied LeBron with a game-high +14 and provided six steals and 19 points, explained how the veteran’s effort rubs off on his teammates.

“It gives me energy because you see him doing it at 36,” THT said. “It gives me no excuse to kind of do the same thing back.”

The Lakers know their title hopes rely on a dedicated and healthy LeBron (you’ll notice tape around his abdomen postgame). His head coach, for one, doesn’t believe LeBron’s ongoing stretch of brilliance is temporary.

“Nothing feels like it’s limited resources with him,” Vogel said. “Just the way he plays, that’s the way we have to be. That’s Lakers basketball.”