LeBron and the Lakers were eliminated from playoff contention on March 22.
James tallied a triple-double in Los Angeles' 111-106 win over the Kings on Sunday night by pouring in 29 points with 11 rebounds and 11 assists. He addressed his reasoning for playing despite the lack of playoff stakes postgame.
"I would never cheat myself. At the end of the day, I know we're out the playoff race, but if I'm on the court, I'm gonna play the way I play, and I play to win," James told Spectrum SportsNet's Mike Trudell. "I never would cheat the game. There's such a thing as game gods, they're watching no matter what you're doing. It's our obligation to go out and be a professional and that's what I'm about."
Los Angeles enters Monday night 11th in the West at 32–41. James is averaging 27.5 points, 8.6 rebounds and 8.1 assists per game. 2019 will mark his first year out of the playoffs since 2005.