LeBron James: ‘I came here to win a championship and I want to win more’

LeBron James talks about Russell Westbrook and Frank Vogel, looking back on the 2021-22 Los Angeles Lakers season as the team misses out on playoffs.


With his eyes turned to next season, LeBron James met with reporters Monday to talk about the Lakers’ 49-loss season, his plans for the future and the confusion with coach Frank Vogel’s situation.

ESPN reported that Vogel would be fired and informed of the decision as soon as Monday. But after Vogel said he had no communication with the front office about his future on Sunday after a win in Denver, James said Monday that he hadn’t been told whether or not the Lakers coach had been fired.

“I have not been told. I’ve seen the reports just like everybody else,” James said. “So we’ll see what happens.”


In a nearly 30-minute interview, James said he hadn’t yet discussed an extension with the Lakers’ front office. He also said a recent MRI on his injured left ankle revealed damage that won’t require surgery but will call for him to be off his foot for four to six weeks.

James said he made the ankle injury worse by trying to return for the game against New Orleans less than a week after suffering the sprain.

The All-Star forward said he had one aim moving forward: “I came here to win a championship and I want to win more.”

Once upon a time the Lakers’ Russell Westbrook bet was a sign of hope. Then the reality of an aging roster, and injuries to LeBron James and Anthony Davis, set in.

April 8, 2022

He admitted that the core with Anthony Davis and Russell Westbrook didn’t have enough on-court time together to make any firm judgments about their play.

“I mean, at the end of the day, the reason why we were not very good together is we weren’t on the damn floor together,” James said. “That is the No. 1 thing. I mean, how many games did we play together? We played, what, a quarter of the season together? Less than a quarter of a season. I played more games with my high school teammates in a season, and we only played 27 games. So there it is.”

James also marveled at the fact that the Lakers used 41 starting lineups this season.

“That’s literally half the season. Forty-one starting lineups. Wow,” he said. “It’s just, you never get an opportunity to see what the ballclub could have been. Definitely frustrating, for sure. And how long I can play at this level? I mean, it’s up to my health. It’s up to my spirit. It’s up to my motivation. The great thing for me is I get an opportunity now to be around my boys and watch those guys through the AAU tournaments and their summer ball. And that for the last five years has motivated me to come back, just watching them and watching their circuits.


“So I don’t have a cap on how long I want to play. I don’t want to say this or that. My wife doesn’t want to hear that if it’s longer than a certain amount of years. But I still can produce at a high level I showed this year, for sure.”

When asked about whether the Lakers should move forward with the three players, James deferred.

“That’s not my decision. It’s not my decision to sit here and say well, this is what we should bring back and have on the roster,” James said. “That would be the front office’s decision. And obviously they may ask my input but at the end of the day like I said they’ll make the decision they feel that best suits this franchise going forward.

“But listen, if we come back and that’s the team and whoever the team is I told you, I’ll be ready.”

The 19-year veteran averaged 30.3 points, 8.2 rebounds and 6.2 assists a game while shooting 52.4% from the field and 35.9% from three-point range. All the averages, except assists, and shooting percentages are above his career marks.