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Lakers News: LeBron James Wants Anthony Davis to Take Control of the Team

LeBron is pushing his co-star to be the team's leader and No. 1 option.
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As LeBron James enters his age-37 season (he turns 38 in December), he knows he can't lead this Laker team forever.

He's done just about everything for the team since he came to L.A. in 2018. He's averaged over 30 points per game one year. He's led the league in assists another year. He's averaged a total of 35.2 minutes per game across his four years. And, of course, he took home the Finals MVP when he helped lead the team to the Promised Land in 2020. 

But as LeBron is (probably) nearing the end of his career, he knows he can't carry the load much longer.

And on this team, which may not have the star power that previous teams have had, the Lakers will lean on Anthony Davis more than ever to be the superstar big man the team traded the farm for back in 2019 — and Davis is up for the challenge.

"I'm looking forward to a healthy year and doing what I know we can do," Davis said in an interview with Yahoo! Sports. "I'm so excited that I've got goosebumps just thinking about this year."

Davis has struggled to stay healthy in his three seasons in Purple and Gold.

He was fully healthy in 2019-20, when the Lakers had the best duo in basketball, the best team in basketball and were rewarded with the franchise's 17th championship.

However, Davis has played in just 72 games across the last two years, and the team has suffered because of it.

The Lakers were a No. 7 seed in the 2020-21 postseason after Davis played in just half of the 72 regular season games. They looked poised to upset the Suns in the first round, but Davis went down with an injury, and the tide turned for the worst.

Last season, Davis played in just half of the team's games, and it showed.

The team failed to make the play-in tournament, as Davis watched from the sidelines for most of the season.

There was a ton of talk in the offseason about Davis not rehabbing the right way and not working on his jumper, but Davis has the chance to silence all the doubters. 

"I went into this summer focusing on strengthening my body," Davis said to Yahoo! Sports. "I have to be on the court and at my best to put us in position to be our best...I'm excited for this challenge and what's ahead."

Chris Haynes reported that James has reportedly been "in [Davis'] ear about taking over the reins of the team."

At just 29-years-old, AD has a chance to remind people why the Lakers traded their entire young core to pair him with LeBron. If AD can stay healthy and play a majority of the team's games, this team could very quickly prove that last year was just a fluke.