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Sun, Feb 7, 2016

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LeBron says Durant will feel title pressure 'when I retire'

By Royce Young | NBA writer

James may not play in Wednesday's game against the Pacers. (USATSI)
LeBron James thinks he's going to have the pressure on him to win for a while. (USATSI)

LeBron James has had a lot to say lately. Starting with his Mount Rushmore comments to now saying that Kevin Durant won't experience the same kind of pressure and scrutiny as him until he decides to retire.

Via Bleacher Report:

When does he think the pressure will truly shift to Durant to take the Larry O'Brien trophy?

“When I retire,” James replied. “When I retire. They're still talking about, am I going to win a third? You know…”

It's not completely outlandish, because as we all know, the media goes where LeBron goes. There's as much talk about where his place will be in the history of the league as there is about what's happening currently within this season. Because of LeBron's career, and the spotlight that's always been on him, there probably isn't a player who's experienced more scrutiny and pressure the past decade as him.

But let's not overlook this: LeBron sure does think he's the center of the basketball universe. I don't know if it's the real threat that Kevin Durant has presented recently that has kind of gotten to LeBron or what, but to suggest that Durant won't experience the pressure to win a championship until LeBron retires is just incredibly arrogant.

It doesn't seem all that coincidental that LeBron has piped up and shown off more in the recent weeks, with the dunk exhibition at practice, the Rushmore comments, the stuff talking about feeling healthy and now this. Either LeBron is concerned about the focus of the league shifting away from him and wants to regain the attention of the world, or all this talk could be an effort to install a bit of pressure on himself and his team and kick them into gear after kind of coasting for a lot of the season.

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