“Right now, it don’t mean shit unless I get it done,” James told ESPN’s Dave McMenamin following L.A.’s 117-107 Game 5 victory over the Denver Nuggets. “I got to get it done.”
The superstar is 3-6 all time in the championship round, coming out on top in 2012 and 2013 with the Miami Heat, and 2016 with the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Despite that record, James’ mark on history is secure. His 10th Finals appearance is more than all but three NBA franchises, and he’s the only player in league history to average more than 25 points per game in the postseason on three separate Finals teams, according to NBA Stats.
After James missed the playoffs last season for just the third time in his career, the Lakers now become just the fourth team since 1984 to reach the Finals a year after missing the postseason.
James said Saturday he was fully cognizant of suggestions he merely joined the Lakers for non-basketball reasons in 2018.
“This is what I came here for,” James said. “I heard all the conversations and everything that was said about why did I decide to come to L.A. The reason I came to L.A., how it was not about basketball, and all those conversations … naysayers and things of that nature.
“Understood that, and with the season last year, with my (groin) injury it just gave them more … sticks and more wood to throw in the fire to continue to say the things they were going to say about me. But it never stopped my journey, it never stopped my mindset, it never stopped my goal.”