James Relying on Role Players too Much?
(Dwyane) Wade deserves the bulk of the blame, and trust me, he’s getting it. But come on, it’s LeBron (James). The undisputed MVP of the league. The world’s best player. In a game where he went 10-of-22 from the floor for just 22 points, which included only 2-of-8 in the second half, his team wilted like flower in the Sahara. His team needed him to rise, to lift them up, to take them higher, and instead, that responsibility fell to Mario Chalmers and James Jones. What?
My question: Where’s May 31, 2007 LeBron James? Where’s the guy that dropped 48 on Detroit’s face in Game 5, scoring 25 of the Cavs’ final 29? Where’s the guy that had The Look and gave us all the hope that he was going to be one of the great playoff forces to be reckoned with? With the Heat throwing up all over themselves, where was LeBron to just try and say, “I got this?”
Sometimes it’s just out of a player’s hands. For example, Game 2 for Kobe Bryant, he couldn’t do anything to stop the onslaught from Oklahoma City. It wasn’t his fault. It was all on the Lakers, as a whole.
But LeBron didn’t appear to have any interest in trying to take over. After the Pacers went ahead by 14 late in the third and Erik Spoelstra called a third timeout of the quarter, here’s how it went for the Heat: two free throws for Joel Anthony, Mike Miller 3, Chalmers missed 3, LeBron missed free throw, LeBron missed 3, LeBron missed jumper, Shane Battier missed 3, LeBron missed 3. In the fourth quarter, LeBron attempted four shots. Eight total for the second half when it slipped away. For a player of his ability, there’s really no good reason for that.