LeBron James has been in the league for almost two decades. He has seen the highs and lows of various franchises and he knows what it takes to win championships. LeBron believes a “losing culture” will always hamper teams from being successful. He added that the caliber of the player or coach can only take the team so far.
In the recent episode of ‘The Shop‘, James discussed the importance of having “culture” in an organization. Soccer star Marcus Rashford spoke about the downfall of Manchester United and how once the influential figure of Sir Alex Ferguson left the club, it all went haywire. James agreed with the fact that culture can make or break a team.
LeBron said, “Definitely culture first, and then if you can blend that with the talent and the right pieces, it’s literally the gateway to being successful over a long period of time”. He also spoke about how he felt that he had to take responsibility for changing the culture of his team as a rookie.
LeBron was drafted in 2003 as the number one overall pick by the Cleveland Cavaliers. They hadn’t made the playoffs in five years. James completely turned the franchise around and the Cavs became one of the most recognizable teams in the league. During James’ two stints there, the Cavs would go on to make five Finals appearances and win one championship.
LeBron James then added, “You can have Michael Jordan, Shaquille O’Neal, Allen Iverson, and Jesus Christ could be their coach. They’re gonna lose It’s, like, literally the culture”. He said that you can recognize in a couple of weeks whether a player picked up from a losing culture team is up for it or not.
LeBron James has always tried to instill a winning culture
LeBron has always been expected to be great. Coming out of high school, he became part of a historically poor franchise. James arguably learned the meaning of a winning culture when he joined the Miami Heat in 2010. The Heat went to four straight Finals and won two championships. LeBron James became the leader of a franchise that knew how to win.
After returning to Cleveland in 2014, James demanded that winning mentality from everyone involved. The Cavs also went to four straight Finals and won the franchise’s only championship in 2016. LeBron James then decided to join the historically great Los Angeles Lakers franchise.
The Lakers hadn’t made the playoffs for five years prior to him joining the team. They won the championship in 2020 but questionable front-court decisions have led to the downfall of the Lakers in recent years. Not even two years after they had won the championship, the Lakers failed to make the playoffs last season.
Having the right culture can do wonders for any team. The Golden State Warriors are another prime example of it. What do you make of LeBron James’ opinion? Let us know in the comments.