LeBron James have given glowing praise of his "rival" Dillon Brooks head of their matchup later tonight. "I think every player that is awarded with a contract is awarded for a reason, and they're worthy of the contract that they get. So I think in his case, he was worthy of the contract he got. He's put in the work since he came out of Oregon, and that's what Houston found value in and he's here. So no, I think it has nothing to do with that," LeBron told reporters.
However, LeBron also noted that he didn't view the game as a grudge match. "I think just the competition alone. It's always great to go out and compete, so he's one of those guys who likes to compete along with a lot of other guys in our league. But I don't really dwell in the past too much. ... Over the years, I kind of leave that in the past and find a way to [think about]: 'How can we get our first road win?' That's what my mindset is, for sure."
Dillon Brooks Ready For LeBron
LeBron's comments come after Brooks issued a bold statement of his own earlier in the day. "Ready to lock him up. He's shooting the ball well. He's been playing well. So I'm just there to make him tired, make him get into that fourth quarter early," Brooks told the Houston Chronicle this week. "I feel like he (James) controls the media. I feel like a lot of guys, you know, have these podcasts and love social media, but I don't really like it. And I don't really like media. If I didn't have to talk to you guys I wouldn't talk to you guys. And you know, I just block it out and just play basketball."
Brooks' comments came ahead of the Rockets hosting the Lakers on Wednesday night. It will be the first time the pair will take the fall after Brooks tried, and failed, to ignite a beef between them during the first round of the playoffs. Brooks called LeBron "old" and consistently got in the veteran's face. However, LeBron and the Lakers completely cooked Brooks' then-team, the Grizzlies. Furthermore, the Grizzlies chose to let Brooks walk in free agency, in part due to the defensive specialist focusing more on the beef than playoff basketball.