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LeBron James: Marion can't stop me by himself

Posted on: June 4, 2011 4:09 pm
Edited on: June 4, 2011 4:11 pm
LeBron James says he needs to be more aggressive and that no one, including Shawn Marion, can stop him one-on-one.  lebron-shawnPosted by Ben Golliver.

DALLAS -- Miami Heat forward LeBron James is always going to get his numbers. No matter who guards him, how often he faces double teams or what position he's asked to play, James produces, and produces big.

Over his last seven NBA seasons, James has averaged at least 26.7 points, 6.7 rebounds and 6.0 assists. Not a single other NBA player has hit those numbers once. 

Through two games in the NBA Finals, James's scoring and passing numbers have taken a hit. Despite playing 42.5 minutes per game, James is averaging 24 points, 8.5 rebounds and 4.5 assists and the Heat are averaging just 92.5 points as a team, down nearly 10 points from their regular season average of 102.1.

These aren't eye-popping declines given that defenses tighten up in the postseason, but any time James isn't performing to his usual standard, questions start getting asked. For starters: Is Mavericks forward Shawn Marion throwing him off of his game?

At his media availability on Saturday, James complimented Marion's performances during Game 1 and Game 2, but seemed to scoff at the notion that Marion individually had succeeded in slowing him down.

"I think Shawn Marion has done a great job," James said. "Especially offensively. He's picked up his game offensively. Hanging around the rim, getting some lay-ups, getting some tip-backs, playing around the rim. His activity throughout the first two games has been pretty good."

But what about the defensive end?

"I don't feel like it's one guy in this league that can stop me one-on-one," James said. "There's always a defense that's looking at me when I have the ball. He's the guy that's guarding me, but there's no one guy that can guard me."

When Marion has matched up against James, he's done about as well as can be expected. He's played both assertively and intelligently, competing regardless of whether he gets beaten for a highlight dunk. Late in Game 2, James was bottled up about as tightly as you'll see and he responded by forcing up late three-pointers against the shot clock that didn't fall, a critical factor in Dallas' massive comeback.

If James wasn't going to give him credit, Marion was happy to give it to himself.

"I've been doing it my whole career," Marion said of his defense on Saturday. "If you go back and look at my whole career, I've done it -- point guards all the way to big men. It's just another day at work."

Marion wanted to make it clear that his defensive abilities aren't simply a product of a new role he's taken on as he's gotten older or with this particular Mavericks team.

"I've always been a defensive stopper," Marion said. "I've always played defense. I had to go from playing the three to playing power forward. Name me players in this league who can do that. 6-foot=7, 225 pounds. Nobody can do that probably in the next generation coming. I've always prided myself on playing both ends of the floor. I'm a competitor."

So if it wasn't Marion stopping him, what's gone wrong offensively in James' opinion?

James attributed his decreased scoring to a lack of aggressiveness and pointed to the fact that he has attempted just six free throws in the first two Finals games combined.

"I do have to be more aggressive in the paint," James said. "Six free throws in two games -- I do that in my sleep in one game. So that's not me. I'm going to make a concerted effort to be more aggressive to try to get to the rim, create some more opportunities for myself and my teammates."

Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said he pinpointed three late-game possessions that were "very poor" and later Wade explained that those three possessions were the forced, errant threes from himself and James. "

James seemed to agree, singling out one aspect of Dallas' defense that he believed deserved praise: the Mavericks' unexpected decision to aggressively defend him on the perimeter during pick-and-rolls late in the game.

"They did some things defensively that they hadn't done throughout the first two games all the way. They started to blitz me [and Heat guard Dwyane Wade's] pick-and-rolls, a lot our sets kept us on the perimeter. We didn't get into our sets early enough to give us more time. So we had to take contested long-range threes." 

Forcing James to take contested, long-range threes is the definition of succeeding defensively against him. Marion deserves the praise for his Game 2 performance, even if James wasn't willing to give it to him.

Since: Jan 2, 2011
Posted on: June 5, 2011 11:21 am

LeBron James: Marion can't stop me by himself

First, way to  butcher the english language.  This is why I hate NBA hoops.  The only thing these guys know is "ME" . "MY GAME", nobody can stop you, LeBron you stop yourself. You cant close, you cant finish. No one can stop you cause the refs call fouls on anyone who gets close to ur punk ass. Go lock these thugs out...NBA>>>GO AWAY and NEVER come back

Since: Jun 5, 2011
Posted on: June 5, 2011 11:21 am

LeBron James: Marion can't stop me by himself

If it is a close game in the final two minutes he will miss or pass of to a teamate because he knows he can't shoot under pressure.  There is 10 min before that where he is fine but to close out a game he can't do it.

Since: Sep 10, 2006
Posted on: June 5, 2011 11:19 am

LeBron James: Marion can't stop me by himself

there's a reason he "gets his numbers" no matter who guards him or double teams him.  It's called David Stern and the referees.  If the guy is so dominant then why do they insist on babying him every time he has the ball?  Watch him tonight and any time he misses with someone in his face or if he throws the ball aways his arms automatically go up in the air, whining to the official about not blowing his whistle.  It's just a tad ridiculous how someone who has never won anything has been annointed king of the NBA.

Since: Jul 17, 2008
Posted on: June 5, 2011 11:11 am

LeBron James: Marion can't stop me by himself

Again this guy opens his mouth and something stupid comes out!  Would somebody, maybe the Heat assign this guys a life coach!  We can not blame this on his youth, this guy is not a kid anymore and has not been one in a very long time.  Hey LeBron, just play the game and keep your mouth shut and maybe in time people will like you.   

Since: Jun 5, 2011
Posted on: June 5, 2011 11:08 am

LeBron James: Marion can't stop me by himself

Well, LeBron could be right when he said that Marion can't stop him alone, but what happened in Game 2???? I am sure fans that bet on , knows it takes 5 players to play the game..and Dallas was really persistent and focused to win the game..and Mavericks betting fans that will surely support and root for the Mavericks come Game 3!

Since: Jan 17, 2009
Posted on: June 5, 2011 11:06 am

LeBron James: Marion can't stop me by himself

Lebron's offense relies on dunking and getting to the free throw line. His outside shot is average and he rarely hits a clutch shot. He constantly walks, carries, and double dribbles and it rarely gets called. When he goes to the rim half of the time he is commiting an offensive foul by throwing his elbows into a defenders chest, yet the foul is called on the defender and he goes to the line (just like he did against Chandler in the 4th qt. of game 2). The guy is a great player but he has yet to win a ring and I find it comical that anyone would even compare him to Jordan at this point. Win a few rings, hit some bigs shots, win some games single handedly like Reggie Miller used to, oh wait, that's right. You can't, thats why you lured Bosh to Miami to play on another superstars team instead of staying with your own and making the players around you better.

Since: Nov 15, 2008
Posted on: June 5, 2011 10:43 am

LeBron James: Marion can't stop me by himself

Well here we go again with Lebron James.  In the recent weeks all you have been hearing about is Lebron is a great guy this and that.  It may be true that he is in fact a great guy but his mouth takes away from it all.  We got to see another flash of this selfish approach late in game 2 against the mavs.  Wade had the hot hand and should of kept getting the ball but Lebron threw a monkey wrench into it.  Hey I'm not a Heat fan but I am a fan of the game and that was selfish play and comments about a smaller guard at 6-7 makes him feel good I guess.  All of a sudden he expects people to kiss his pinky ring - I say let your play talk Lebron and put a sock in it.  Millions saw you take the rock out of Flash's hands when he could have carried the team to victory only so you could get your touches.

Since: Apr 10, 2011
Posted on: June 5, 2011 10:31 am

LeBron James: Marion can't stop me by himself

even though he is not far from the truth, this guy has no humilty what so ever.....Lebron most have the biggest mouth in sports .....i bet he can deepthroat my gay

Since: Feb 27, 2007
Posted on: June 5, 2011 10:25 am

LeBron James: Marion can't stop me by himself

Lebron James ....just another overpaid, overhyped blow-hard!  Better rewind the 4th quarter tapes, so everyone can get a better view of how he WAS stopped in the the closing minutes....when it counted!  If his only excuse is not being agressive going the rim and getting more fouls, what does that tell us?  He depends on the charity points?  
With all the no-call traveling, carrying, and double dribbles,...any NBA player can be unstoppable if they time it right and/or make the shot.  Blake Griffin could school Mr James in being "unstoppable".  I've never seen anyone else play by the rules and still dunk on two or three defenders in front of the goal....consistently
THIS is one of the better posts I have EVER seen on this website.

Either Boy James wants people to realize he is speaking between the lines, or he is really just that arrogant and doesnt even realize he is speaking between the lines.

Doesnt matter. This pointless banter by the Heat is going to cost them the championship. Instead of just keeping his ego in check, and his name out of the low-lights, he is opening his does it go?

Its better to keep your mouth shut and have people think your an idiot, than to open your mouth and remove all doubt that you are indeed an idiot. 

Since: Sep 15, 2006
Posted on: June 5, 2011 10:17 am

LeBron James: Marion can't stop me by himself

Sally you really didnt say people like James is the reason the world hates AMERICA did you? We are in 3 wars, all of our politicans are crocked, we cant take care of our own people, have grown people rapeing and killing kids. You have the right to your opinion and I respect that but i dont think anyone is saying I HATE AMERICA becuase of LeBron or guys like him. His jersey is the #1 seller in the world so if eceryone hate him quit buying his stuff.

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