The International Blogtable: Has Anyone Seen LeBron?


Every week, the International Blogtable brings together some of the best basketball minds from around the world, posing a burning question to writers and editors from the NBA's fleet of international web destinations. It's a BIG world, after all.
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How do you think LeBron is playing so far in these Finals?
Pawel Weszka
Editor, NBA Africa

LeBron's struggles offensively. We know that he can take off at any time -- that's what we have been used to -- but 16.7 points on 39 percent shooting per game in the Finals is his lowest in a series this postseason and is not going to cut it. Credit to Leonard and the Spurs, but James will have to be much more aggressive and influential if we are to keep mentioning his name next to Michael Jordanís in one sentence as one of the greatest ever.
Adriano Albuquerque
Blogger, NBA Brasil

We're definitely due one of LeBron's banner performances in this series, and you know that's coming. It usually comes just when people start questioning his performance, so that sounds like Game 4 will be such an occasion for James to step up. He has been OK, better than most, but surely we've come to expect much more out of the best player in the world. He needs to be more aggressive, get to the block more often and, hell, just for the sake of it, hit a couple of 3-pointers. That would frustrate the Spurs a lot.
Hanson Guan
Editor, NBA China

What's wrong with Lebron James? He lost himself at such a key time. On the defense side, Kawhi Leonard became a nightmare for James, whose 16.7 pts and 38.9% shooting on average were lacking. Still more worrying was the indication that he lost confidence in himself as well as the ability to dominate the game.
Philipp Dornhegge

LeBronís playing way below his own standards. Many people said that the Spurs are making him pass the ball, but to start consecutive games shooting 2-12 and 2-13 is no fluke. I have a feeling that Kawhi Leonard is in LeBronís head, and the MVP simply doesnít know what to do. The young Spur has even been outplaying him on the boards in Games 2 and 3. Iím wondering if all those minutes LeBronís played this year are catching up to him. Didnít see this coming at all.
Stefanos Triantafyllos
Editor, NBA Greece

LeBron is not playing like LeBron right now. He just had his worst game in the 2013 Playoffs and it's not only about the points. He made bad choices, he wasn't aggressive with the ball, settling too much with pull-up jumpers especially against mis-match situations. No wonder he didn't go to the free throw line, not even once. We have to give credit to the defense, but I think that it falls more on LeBron's. He is the best player in the world right now and he has to find a way to turn things around. And maybe go to the post a little bit more, leaving the rest of the work to the spot-up shooters.
Karan Madhok
Blogger, NBA India

LeBronís performance so far in the Finals brings back eerie and discomforting memories of the 2011 Finals (vs. Dallas) and the 2010 Conference Semifinals (vs. Boston). Hereís a guy who is capable of doing nearly anything he wants on the court, and he is doing a lot of good things too Ė creating, rebounding, defending Ė but there is something sorely missing. Credit the defensive effort of Kawhi Leonard and the Spurs, but LeBron has shrunk into a passive shell offensively. His outside shot has gone cold and he is not attacking the basket like he should (only six FT attempts all series!). Sure, the all-round statistics donít look bad and heís been decent in the Finals so far, but Ďdecentí alone wonít cut it against the Spurs: he has to switch into ĎVideo Game Jamesí mode Ė the James that has been the worldís best player for the past several years Ė to win a championship. Itís only the biggest stage in the basketball world!
Davide Chinellato
Editor, NBA Italia

So far, heís playing way below his level. 16.3 points per game is not what you expect from the best player of the planet. Add that heís shooting 38,9 percent from the floor and 9-39 from more than five feet from the basket and you have his worst performance ever. The triple-double in Game 1 seems really far away. He needs to step up to give Miami a chance.
Aldo Avinante

Lebron is not being aggressive enough -- he needs to attack the basket and make things happen. Six free throw attempts in three games is unacceptable for a player of his magnitude. It seems like deja vu all over again and the 2011 James is showing up instead of the all-conquering version he had in the 2012 Finals. He needs to change if the Heat will have any chance to get back in this series.