LeBron James sent NBA fans into a frenzy with his cryptic response to a photoshopped Team USA Olympics roster, including him and several other superstars.
“Don’t play with my emotions King James”: LeBron James’ cheeky reaction to Team USA Dream team at Paris Olympics 2024 has fans buzzing.
The post went viral in the wake of USA Team’s 2023 FIBA World Cup exit at the hands of Germany.
USA deployed a young roster with no prior international experience. As expected, the team faltered against a worthy opponent in a knockout game.
Several critics have called for the USA to recruit top-tier superstars starting with the 2024 Paris Olympics, including James, Steph Curry, and Kevin Durant.
The last time so many alphas were on the same team was in 2012 during the London Olympics when LeBron James played alongside the late Kobe Bryant, Chris Paul, Kevin Durant, and Carmelo Anthony.
The Americans went undefeated in the tournament and won the gold.
It’s an enticing prospect to see LeBron team up with Steph Curry and Kevin Durant to play meaningful basketball again. It would be a rendition of the 1992 Dream Team or 2008 Redeem Team.
These legends have only a few years left at the top level, so this could be their shot to produce a one-of-one moment.
Team USA selecting young players didn’t seem like it was taking a casual approach.
That instead seemed like a trend it wanted to follow with this group and nurture these players to immerse more continuity and cohesiveness for future tournaments.
It’s easier to do that with a group of young players as they can stick around longer than veteran stars, who have avoided being part of international tournaments in the offseason.
LeBron James has passed the opportunity to play in four international tournaments in a row, so the USA could continue with its current selection process and make marginal upgrades instead.
Former USA basketball Managing Director Jerry Colangelo also reflected on James’ decision to pass on being part of Team USA over the past few years in 2021, saying that his time is likely over in the international scene.
“Father Time takes its toll,” Colangelo told ESPN Radio.
“If you’re a human being, your body is built to go so long depending on what your sport is, and then it’s a downhill situation.”
“LeBron made choices these last couple of Olympics not to participate because he’s got a lot of things going on in his life. So, he put in his time, he made a contribution that is appreciated, but I think his time is over.”
LeBron James may be flirting with the idea of playing for Team USA one last time.
It seems like a far-fetched prospect, considering he will be playing his 21st NBA season next year and will likely take the offseason to recover, especially if he intends to return for a 22nd season.