Although theand are on different ends of the playoff race ahead of their matchup Saturday, isn’t relishing in former teammate ‘ turbulent first season in L.A. prior to tipoff.
“I feel for him. I really do. I feel for him,” Irving told. “I’m very empathetic towards it because how much he wanted to play during that time when he messed up his groin.”
James missed 17 games after suffering the injury on Christmas Day against the Golden State Warriors. The Lakers were 20-14 at the time and have since taken a nosedive in the standings.
James is on the verge of missing the postseason for the first time in 14 years and Irving understands the difficult reality his former teammate faces, considering the standards he holds himself to.
“I’m pretty sure of it. I’m pretty sure success in his eyes is ultimately competing for a championship,” Irving said of LeBron. “And whenever you don’t get a chance to do that, and you’ve been doing it for the last, what, 10 years, getting to the playoffs? I feel for him.”
Irving is averaging 23.4 points, seven assists, and 1.5 steals per contest across 54 appearances. The Celtics (40-26) sit fifth in the Eastern Conference and a game back of the Philadelphia 76ers for home-court advantage.
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