LeBron James Is Playing “NBA 2K18” To Prepare For The Return Of Isaiah Thomas

Bryan Brandom
(Photo: Getty Images)

In the real world, LeBron James hasn’t yet had the opportunity to develop an on-court chemistry with point guard Isaiah Thomas, who joined the Cleveland Cavaliers from the Boston Celtics via the trade of Kyrie Irving. So instead, the four-time MVP’s been using virtual reality to simulate the experience.

When asked at practice on Wednesday how he’s preparing for the return of the injured Thomas, LeBron said he’s been playing video game “NBA 2K18.”

“Seriously, I’ve said this before. I play a lot of ‘NBA 2K’ and it’s the most realistic basketball game out there that you could ever play,” LeBron told reporters. “I mix and match a lot of lineup changes and things of that nature to see how we can be really good.”

A reporter then asked how true to form the “NBA 2K18” version of himself is. 

“They do a good job,” he said. “They do a good job.”

Of course, that’s easy to say when your player rating has risen to a 98 overall in the most recent update of the hoops game.

Players who feel disrespected by the game’s ratings often aren’t quite as kind.

Even though Dwyane Wade’s recent strong play has factored into their 12-game winning streak, he wants to continue to come off the bench and see Thomas start when the point guard returns from his hip injury.

“I’m good where I’m at,” Wade said, according to cleveland.com. “The problem would only be worse when Isaiah comes back, because he’s going to need his shots. Where I am now, it’s working for me and for this team.”

Thomas is reportedly on pace to debut for the Cavaliers before his initial late-December target.