Los Angeles Lakers superstar forward LeBron James said Sunday night he "never will cheat the game" after recording a triple-double in a 111-106 victory over the Sacramento Kings, the team's first game since being eliminated from playoff contention.
"I would never cheat myself," James said during his postgame interview. "I know we're out [of] the playoff race, but if I'm on the court, I'm going to play how I play, and I play to win. So I never will cheat the game.
"There's such a thing called 'game gods.' And they're watching no matter what you're doing, and it's our obligation to go out and be a professional, and that's what I'm about."
The four-time MVP finished with 29 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists for his second triple-double in the past six games.
Although the Lakers didn't live up to expectations after signing LeBron to a four-year, $153.3 million contract in free agency, he's remained a force on an individual level.
The 34-year-old Ohio native has averaged 27.5 points, 8.6 rebounds and 8.1 assists while shooting 50.8 percent from the field across 53 appearances. He ranks sixth among all players in ESPN's real plus-minus with a net positive impact at both ends of the court.
McCollum and the Blazers Snapped Postseason Losing Streak for "Jennifer"
Stars Invest in Plant-Based Food as Vegetarianism Sweeps NBA
The NBA Got Some Wild Techs This Season
Jarrett Allen Is One of the NBA’s Hottest Rim Protectors
Wade's Jersey Swaps Created Epic Moments This Season
Westbrook Makes History While Honoring Nipsey Hussle
Devin Booker Makes History with Scoring Tear
29 Years Ago, Jordan Dropped Career-High 69 Points
Bosh Is Getting His Jersey Raised to the Rafters in Miami
Steph Returns to Houston for 1st Time Since His Moon Landing Troll
Lou Williams Is Coming for a Repeat of Sixth Man of the Year
Pat Beverley Has the Clippers Stealing the LA Shine
LeBron Keeps Shredding NBA Record Books
Young's Hot Streak Is Heating Up the ROY Race with Luka
LeBron and 2 Chainz Form a Superteam to Release a New Album
Wade's #OneLastDance Dominated February
Warriors Fans Go Wild After Unforgettable Moments with Steph
Eight Years Ago, the Nuggets Traded Melo to the Knicks
Two Years Ago, the Kings Shipped Boogie to the Pelicans
ASG Will Be Competitive Again If the NBA Raises the Stakes
James' groin injury suffered during a Christmas Day win over the Golden State Warriors started the Lakers' downfall, as he missed the next five weeks of action. The result is his first season without playoff basketball since 2004-05 with the Cleveland Cavaliers.
He's healthy now, however, and it sounds like he's going to play out the rest of the regular season as if L.A. was still hunting a postseason berth.