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LeBron James takes part in Drew League for first time since 2011, basketball community goes nuts

Andrew Buller-Russ

As if there was any question to the exact level of gravity a 37-year-old LeBron James still holds within the basketball community after missing the playoffs with the Los Angeles Lakers, Saturday’s Drew League showing should erase all doubts.

Just a month removed from the end of the 2022 NBA Finals, the thirst for more basketball hasn’t diminished. If anything, it’s grown, thanks to the excitement after the NBA Draft, leading into free agency movement along with young players establishing their skills in Summer League Play. The Drew League is just another outlet during the slow period of the offseason, but LeBron James’ appearance makes it a must-watch.

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What is the Drew League?

If you aren’t familiar with the Drew League, it’s an annual pro-am basketball league held every summer in Los Angeles, California. Since it occurs over the offseason, several current NBA stars typically participate, looking for a good, competitive workout against others.

Over the years, we’ve seen everyone from Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant, James, and several others compete in the Drew League. Despite LBJ not participating in the competition since the 2011 lockout (he’s usually playing pretty deep into the NBA postseason), he decided to show up again unexpectedly in 2022.

Naturally, this had the hoops community buzzing, and for those who showed up, James put on a show in front of a packed house at the King/Drew Magnet High School in L.A.

According to Drew League commissioner Drew Smiley, the arena capacity was 1,300, but roughly 2,500 spectators packed into the gym just to see LeBron take the floor.

Let’s just say he didn’t let anyone down. We’ve got some more clips to share down below.

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How did LeBron James do in the Drew League?

It was hard to even find many other highlights from others taking part in the Drew League while James was stealing the show. Despite DeMar DeRozan also participating and performing well, everything’s just another LeBron James clip. But you won’t find many complaining.

Instead, we’re mostly just in awe of LeBron’s abilities, even if it’s not against the best of the best. It’s just cool to see one of basketball’s greatest legends dominating on the court, especially after what had to be one of the most frustrating years of James’ historic career thus far.

Clearly James was having a blast on Saturday, showing all the other amateurs they stand no chance of stopping King James with a full head of steam.

Perhaps the luckiest competitor of the day goes to No. 2 on LeBron’s team, who ended up throwing an alley-oop off the backboard to James, who came through out of nowhere with the putback slam to shake the hoop.

Even if it may have actually been a missed layup for No. 2, I don’t think he’ll ever forget that one.

In all, James finished with 42 points, 16 rebounds and four steals, being awarded the Player of the Game, as his team came away with the win.

As he frequently does, James made it look all too easy on Saturday. The Drew League may not be the NBA, but it’s still fun to see for several fans of the game. There’s no word if James plans to play any more events during the Drew League. It was reported that Kyrie Irving would play in the event, but evidently, he didn’t show up at 11 AM, as many were expecting. For Brooklyn Nets fans, this came as no surprise.

Other Drew League games are currently ongoing at the time of this posting. For those interested, here’s the link from NBA.com. It is free to tune in. After James is done playing, other games should be available to watch as well, though they won’t feature one of the all-time greats.

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