LeBron James expressed his frustration with the Cleveland Cavaliers’ two-game losing streak on Tuesday night, saying his teammates should be playing with more motivation from their Finals loss to the Golden State Warriors last season.
“We haven’t done anything,” James said, according to ESPN. “We didn’t win anything. We lost. We lost in the Finals. So that’s enough motivation for myself. I think we need to understand that. Like, we lost in the Finals. We didn’t win. And the team that beat us looks more hungry than we are. So it shouldn’t be that way.”
The Warriors beat the Cavaliers in six games to become NBA champions, and are now off to a scorching start to the 2015–16 season. They beat the Toronto Raptors on Tuesday night to boost their record to 12–0, and are four wins away from breaking the NBA record for best season start.
The Cavaliers have also had a successful start to their season, holding first place in the East with an 8–3 record, but both James and coach David Blatt want more from their team after losing 104–99 to the Detroit Pistons on Tuesday.
“We need to toughen up,” Blatt said. “I didn’t think we displayed the kind of toughness that made us a team last year. I didn’t see that the last two games, and we need to toughen up—every aspect.”
James said some of his teammates already display the mental toughness he wants to see, but some do not, though he did not divulge specific names.
“We’re too relaxed and too nice,” James said. “We’re just too nice.”
The Cavaliers next play the Milwaukee Bucks on Thursday, and do not face the Warriors until Christmas Day.
- Erin Flynn