With the 2019-20 NBA season suspended due to the global coronavirus pandemic, Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James says an unfinished season would be tough to swallow.
"I don't think I'll be able to have any closure if we do not have an opportunity to finish this season," James said on a conference call with reporters.
When the season was suspended, the Lakers were gearing up for a deep championship run, holding the Western Conference's best record at 49-14, 5.5 games ahead of the second-seed Los Angeles Clippers (44-20).
James was playing some of his best basketball of the season prior to the suspension, holding season averages of 25.7 points, 7.9 rebounds and a league-leading 10.6 assists per game, quickly forming one of the league's most devastating duos alongside big man Anthony Davis.
"I can have some satisfaction on what our team has been able to do this year [with] a first-year coach, first-year system, a whole new coaching staff, bringing on so many new pieces to our team this year," James added.
"I honestly didn't think that we would be able to come together as fast as we did, just having so many new pieces [and] bringing in Anthony [Davis]. He spent seven years in New Orleans, so he was coming into a new system, playing along with myself, and how we would be able to come together? I thought it would take us a lot longer than it did, but I was wrong. I was very wrong about that."
It is currently unclear if and when the NBA season will return, due to ongoing health and safety concerns, however the NBA is continuing to look for solutions to conclude the season, with NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, exploring "many different scenarios," including games at practice facilities with no fans or an isolated single-site like Las Vegas.
However, no decision on the season is likely to come until May, per Silver.
"If it's in one single, isolated destination, if it's Las Vegas or somewhere else that can hold us and keep us in the best possible chance to be safe, not only on the floor but also off the floor as well, then those conversations will be had," James said.
"Once this thing gets a good handle on it and the people in the higher ranks understand it, if they know we are safe, then we can make the next step. But the safety is always the most important, and then we go from there."
Despite being away from his teammates and the team's practice facility, James told reporters he's been keeping himself in shape at home, working out four to five times per day and practicing on his outdoor basketball court.
When he's not binging Netflix' Tiger King, James is scanning the news for information the coronavirus pandemic and enjoying spending time with his young family.
"They wake up every day in a positive mind frame," James said.
"Maybe one reason is they're not actually in school, so I know they get to sleep in a lot more now. But also they're just so appreciative of life. ... Just being able to see my kids wake up with that positive attitude helps. For me, I wake up, I'm able to get a nice breakfast, and then I train. And when I'm training, I'm always in a very positive state of mind."
The views on this page do not necessarily represent the views of the NBA or its clubs.