It’s already clear that the relationship between Luke Walton and new Los Angeles Lakers free agent signing LeBron James is going to be the most heavily scrutinized elements of the team this season, especially given that we’ve already seen one false report about the two not talking disproved and that there is a horde of TV body language analysts and pundits ready to declare that James isn’t going to listen to the third-year head coach.
So far though, it seems like there is nothing to worry about between the two. Walton has already laughed about the drama and said he’s texted with James, and when James made his first appearance at a Lakers game on Sunday, he did something else: He had his first meeting with Walton since choosing to play for him in Los Angeles.
James hasn’t spoke with reporters yet, but Walton told Ramona Shelburne of ESPN that their first face-to-face went well, as has their long-distance communication:
Walton told ESPN he has been encouraged by their early communication.
”He’s about the team. He’s about doing things the right way, and he’s about winning,” Walton said. “I can work with those qualities.”
Walton and James are obviously still getting to know each other, but the fact that they’re already talking so much and that Walton seems to be approaching this more as a partnership than a dictatorship would seem to bode well for the pair’s chances of forming a bond, especially with the two being similar in age.
It obviously remains to be seen how strong of a partnership Walton and James will ultimately prove to be, but all early indications seem to point towards the two being on pretty good terms, despite the fact that there will be sharks sniffing for the faintest hint of blood in the water all season.
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