LeBron James Has Survived 82 Days In The Bubble By Focusing On Winning A Championship

James acknowledged that being in the bubble has been very tough for him.
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It's been 82 days. 

That's 19 days longer than the average gestation period for dogs. That's 22 days longer than actress Lori Loughlin was sentenced to prison for the college admission scandal. That's even seven days longer than most school's summer break. 

For LeBron James, being stuck in the NBA bubble for that length of time has been an exercise in torture. 

Sure, he has creature comforts. He's in a nice hotel suite. He can order whatever food he wants to eat. He's alongside his teammates, some of whom are his close friends. And his wife joined him at Walt Disney World after the first round of the playoffs. 

But still. 

This is the longest he's gone without seeing his three children, Bronny, 15, Bryce, 13, and Zhuri, 5, whom he didn't want to bring inside the NBA bubble to spare them from being as bored as he is. He's trapped inside an arbitrary perimeter in an attempt to insulate players from the COVID-19 pandemic. He's worried about people who are outside of it. And he's exasperated by the multiple shootings of Black men and women this year. 

James, 35, said there's one thing that has gotten him through this period -- his intense desire to lead the Lakers to their first championship since 2010. 

"It's probably been the most challenging thing I've ever done as far as a professional, as far as committing to something and actually making it through," James said in a videoconference Tuesday. "But I knew when I was coming what we were coming here for. I would be lying if I sat up here and knew that everything inside the bubble, the toll that it would take on your mind and your body and everything else, because it's been extremely tough. But I'm here for one reason and one reason only, and that's to compete for a championship."

Since arriving in Florida on July 9, James has done a few things to maintain his sanity. 

He regularly FaceTimes his children and his mother, Gloria. And he meditates.

Other than that, he's poured himself into winning his fourth NBA championship. The Lakers, who open their NBA Finals series against the Miami Heat on Wednesday, are now four wins away from that goal. 

"That was my mindset once I entered the bubble, once I entered the quarantine process the first two days," James said. "Then right from my first practice, my mindset was to -- if I'm going to be here, make the most of it and see what you can do and lock in on what the main thing is. The main thing was for us to finish the season and compete for a championship. So that's just been my mindset throughout these -- I don't even know how many days it is. However many days it is, it feels like five years."

This much is for sure. 

James doesn't want this to all be for naught. 

And that's very good news for the Lakers. 

"I've been as locked in as I've ever been in my career," he said.