Lakers' LeBron James calls it his 'personal motivation' to prove he's not washed up

LOS ANGELES — The powerful superstar moves like a smooth freight train when he attacks the basket. He competes on defense with both his effort and words.

LeBron James is still the complete package as he led the Lakers to a 95-80 victory over the Miami Heat on Friday night. 

James, a month from his 35th birthday, remains well ahead of Father Time. So much that he has offered self deprecation by recently dubbing himself “The Washed King.” James joked that those that doubt his acumen should “meet me at the cleaners.”

“It’s just my personal motivation,” James said. “I’m extra motivated to put myself in a position where I know I belong. It’s my personal motivation every single night to be on the floor and be great.”

James could not always do that last season during his first year with the Lakers. He missed a combined 27 games after straining his left groin in a Christmas Day matchup against the Golden State Warriors. He mirrored his career averages in points (27.4) and shooting percentage (51.0) and topping his career numbers in rebounds (6.5) and assists (7.4) before and after his injury. Yet, James has admitted he did not ever feel the same following his ailment.

LeBron James and the Lakers have won seven straight since losing the season opener.

That only added concern that this might mark the beginning of many injuries James would face in his mid to late 30s. That usually marks the time when NBA players do not produce as they once did.

Therefore, James spent this summer intent on proving he could both train properly while also filming Space Jam 2. That required James to train beginning between 3:30-4 a.m. before arriving on set at 6:30 am for a shoot that lasted between 12 to 14 hours per day for three months.

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