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As LeBron James got older in his career, he started to pick his spots in terms of when to use his energy. Since his second stint with the Cavaliers, James has always been known to take plays off defensively during the regular season. There are numerous videos on the internet that has compilations of LeBron not playing defense over the years.

NBA insider Tom Haberstroh observed this interesting nugget in regards to the Lakers defensive rating. Leading the team with the worse defensive rating while on the court is not something a star player should be doing, regardless of age.

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Obviously, anyone can point to the small sample size of 10 games, but LeBron did already log about 370 minutes on the court this season. As James gets older, he knows he cannot waste too much energy this early in the season, but with this team he may have to, especially defensively.

Watching over his different teams through the years, whenever the team itself is not doing much on defense, James will slack off and not try as hard on that end. The last two seasons with Frank Vogel as coach, defense was an identity of the team, and everyone including James bought in then. Remember in his last year with Cleveland, James took them to the NBA Finals? The Cavaliers were second to last in defensive rating that regular season (111.1).

With the team struggling as they are now, James might be pressed to exert more of his energy during the regular season. It sure looks like the Lakers will be fighting for a spot in the playoffs, rather than resting up for the postseason.