Blog Entry

LeBron is working with Olajuwon in the post

Posted on: August 10, 2011 11:46 am
Edited on: August 10, 2011 12:02 pm
Posted by Royce Young

LeBron in the post. That phrase has almost taken on mythical status, as if it's the lost treasure to LeBron James' game. It's the MacGuffin for him. Add in a solid post game and you've got a Death Star that's fully operational.

That's the idea. And that's why so many people have be chattering about it.

Sounds like LeBron is finally listening. He's getting serious about improving his post game. So serious, that he's bringing in the master to help him out -- Hakeem Olajuwon.

There is a misconception that LeBron has no post game and never has. That's not entirely true, but it's real that he could be better. At 6-8 and 250 pounds with a lightning fast first step, great feet and a strong upper body, there's no reason he shouldn't be dominant there. But for example, against the Mavericks in The Finals, he'd isolate in the post and look like he has no real idea what he wanted to accomplish.

Now LeBron's following behind what other greats have done. Michael Jordan established himself as a post master. Kobe Bryant did after, you guessed it, working with Olajuwon. (The Heat Index has some pretty interesting numbers on Kobe pre and post-Hakeem. Kobe went from 4.1 posts-ups per game to 8.1 after working with Olajuwon and scored 272 more points out of the post the next season. That's an impact.)

Obviously a couple workouts with Olajuwon isn't going to magically turn LeBron into a post wizard. It's a process to build up and improve in that area. It's not even so much about having the moves down, it's about understanding how to apply them in the right situation. What happens when you're doubled at the elbow? What happens when you've got someone isolated on the dribble backing down on the left baseline? What happens when you have the ball faced up on the right block? Realizing and putting together those sequences is almost as much a part of it as anything else. And that comes with lots and lots of application and practice.

But if anything, it's a message from LeBron that he's serious about improving in the area. LeBron's a hard worker, but not necessarily in the sense of fine tuning his game. He's the league's most talented player and that didn't happen by accident. Problem though,  it's easy to just remain there. But the greats move on. They evolve. They progress.

Just think if LeBron had a little reliable post game in The Finals against Dallas. That Game 2 collapse where the Heat couldn't do anything for the last six minutes? The ball could've gone to LeBron on the block. He could've gotten a high percentage look or with his passing ability, dished out of a double team and created for someone else. It's diversity within a player and within an offense. Creating options is always a good thing.

Dwight Howard worked with Olajuwon last summer and is again this year. It hasn't been a magical quick fix for him, but he's improved. Like I said, for both players, it's going to take more than a handful of hour-long workouts to really get it. Repitition is what gets it done. But LeBron's done the hardest part -- he got started.

Since: May 7, 2011
Posted on: August 11, 2011 6:56 am

LeBron is working with Olajuwon in the post

This was a very smart move for LBJ to be mentored by one of the best post players of all-time in "The Dream". This is one of my "knocks" on LBJ is that he doesn't do enough damage "on the blocks" and that he falls in love with the jump shot too much! If he were to concentrate on working down low in the post more,I promise you that his scoring average will increase as well as his FG percentage. This will give the Heat another post threat to go along with Bosh(yeah, I know) when he's not taking jump shots either. You see what happen to D.Howard's game when he worked with "The Dream" so why won't it help LBJ's game. Well,I guess we'll find out this NBA season........maybe.

Since: Dec 27, 2010
Posted on: August 11, 2011 6:22 am

LeBron is working with Olajuwon in the post

If LeBron could develop a low post game he would be unstoppable and I could see Miami winning the title
this season or next season if the lockout shuts down the whole season?

Since: May 26, 2011
Posted on: August 10, 2011 6:23 pm

LeBron is working with Olajuwon in the post

Hey Rockets, why don't you have Hakeem working with some of your post players?  I remember him offering to work with Yao, but  that never happened.  He lives in Houston.  What's the reluctance?  Has Morey statistically determined this wouldn't work?

Since: Aug 31, 2010
Posted on: August 10, 2011 3:27 pm

LeBron is working with Olajuwon in the post

how can sport pyschology help lebron? it cant he's doing the right thing by working on his post game that would have got'n him that ring, jordan added a post game and when he did the bulls couldn't be stop. if you fix your game you will fix the mind.

Since: Jul 2, 2011
Posted on: August 10, 2011 12:25 pm

LeBron is working with Olajuwon in the post

This won't help at all.  What LeBron needs is a heart transplant because he has no heart!  Quitter and choke artist are synomous with him presently.  A post game won't fix his habit of disappearing when his team needs him.   I applaud his effort but some sports pyschology would help him more.

Since: Jun 12, 2009
Posted on: August 10, 2011 12:19 pm

LeBron is working with Olajuwon in the post

Damn...only got 90.

Since: Jun 12, 2009
Posted on: August 10, 2011 12:19 pm

LeBron is working with Olajuwon in the post

Not a big LBJ fan, but this is quite possibly the smartest thing he has done in a long time.  If Olajuwon can get James to get a low post presence he will be much harder to defend.  Wow, I just stated the obvious.  That is OK, CBS will give me a 100+ score for this weak post.

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