NBA fans were in for a treat on Thursday when LeBron James and Kevin Durant faced off for the first time in five years. It has been 1,767 days since the Los Angeles Lakers star and the Phoenix Suns scorer last faced off in a Christmas Day showdown in 2018. Sure enough, their confrontation did not disappoint. KD led the Phoenix team to lose, and LeBron stepped up at the critical moment to help the Purple and Gold win 100-95.
After the game, James talked more about his rivalry with Durant and admitted they don’t have many games left. After all, both are in the latter stages of their careers. That being said, he won’t take Durant for granted.
“us Not many games left. Don’t know how many guys we have left, so when you go out there with such a great player, you never want to take it for granted, one of the best players to ever play this game. It’s always a treat. It’s fun,” James said via Hoops Hype.
Sure enough, LeBron James looked as motivated as ever against Kevin Durant and the Suns. The Lakers forward finished with 21 points, eight rebounds and nine assists while also driving Los Angeles on back-to-back layups with a minute left.
Durant certainly feels the same way as LeBron, as he’s been firing on all cylinders without Devin Booker and Bradley Beal. KD poured in 39 points, 11 rebounds and 2 points to try to lead Phoenix to victory.
Regardless, the Suns leader had high praise for LeBron before and after the game.
“You’re just comparing yourself to one guy,” Durant said of James. “If you can accomplish and achieve some of the things he did, you’ve done pretty good for yourself. It’s just your baseline as a player to see how great you can be.”
Fortunately for fans, LeBron and Durant still have three chances to face each other in the 2023-24 season, with the Lakers and Suns facing off in November and January and February 2024. If both players stay in the West, well, there could be more games between them if they don’t get injured.
However, as LeBron said, fans better enjoy these meetings while they come because there won’t be many moving on.