LeBron James on Pressure Surrounding Bronny and NBA Draft: 'Can Y'all Please Just Let the Kid Be a Kid'

James was responding to ESPN removing Bronny from their 2024 mock draft.

Two individuals at a basketball game, one in a hoodie and beanie speaking, the other in a USC basketball uniform listening
(Photo by Ezra Shaw / Getty Images)
Two individuals at a basketball game, one in a hoodie and beanie speaking, the other in a USC basketball uniform listening

LeBron James has something to say about ESPN's draft insiders predictions.

On Monday, Feb. 26, James responded to a tweet that mentioned ESPN removing his son Bronny James from its 2024 mock draft. They projected he would be selected in 2025.

"Can yall please just let the kid be a kid and enjoy college basketball," he wrote. "The work and results will ultimately do the talking no matter what he decides to do. If y’all don’t know he doesn’t care what a mock draft says, he just WORKS! Earned Not Given!"

Tweet from LeBron James defending a kid’s choice to enjoy college basketball and ignore mock draft commentary

James continued, "And to all the other kids out there striving to be great just keep your head down, blinders on and keep grinding. These Mock Drafts doesn’t matter one bit! I promise you! Only the WORK MATTERS!! Let’s talk REAL BASKETBALL PEOPLE!"

Tweet from LeBron James encouraging kids to focus on their work and ignore mock drafts, ending with a call to discuss real basketball

Many believed Bronny would've been a one-and-done, but it might be better for the 19-year-old to continue building his stock up in college basketball playing for the USC Trojans.

Take a look at ESPN's 2024 mock draft here.

The latest mock draft edition comes almost two months after James reportedly said Bronny could play on the Lakers "right now, easy, EASY." The remark was made after Los Angeles lost its four straight game and suffered a tenth defeat in its last 13 games.

LeBron has made no secret of his desire to play with Bronny in the NBA and it appeared as though his feelings have not changed. The 20-time NBA All-Star said in an interview with ESPN earlier this year that he needs to "be on the floor with my boy, I got to be on the floor with Bronny."

However, just days later, James amended his stance just a little bit. The Lakers star explained that if his own goals align with Bronny's, then he will need to "put in the work," a sentiment revisited earlier today.

Of course, when it comes to pro athletes, Father Time is undefeated. Even though LeBron shows no signs of slowing down—averaging 25 points, 7.9 assists and 7.2 rebounds per game—it's worth pointing out that he will be turning 40 in December. He is currently the oldest player in the league.

Bronny, who is averaging 5.5 points, 2.8 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game in 19 contests at USC, was cleared to resume basketball activities nearly three months ago after collapsing on the court during a team practice due to a congenital heart defect.

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