Frank Vogel says LeBron James' game time is "always a concern" after the four-time MVP played a team-high 40 minutes in the Los Angeles Lakers' 114-103 loss to the Toronto Raptors.

James starred for the Lakers in the previous day's defeat to the Phoenix Suns but was listed as questionable for Monday's clash with the Raptors due to soreness in his right knee.

The Lakers were 6-12 without James heading into the contest at Arena and Vogel took a gamble of sorts by not only using James but keeping him on the court for longer than any other player.

He delivered another impressive display with 30 points and nine rebounds, yet it was not enough to halt the Lakers' poor run as they fell to an eighth defeat in 10 games to go 29-39 for the season.

Despite James' fitness concerns, Lakers head coach Vogel is comfortable with his decision to keep the 37-year-old on the court against the Raptors, who won for a fourth straight game.

"It's always a concern," Vogel, who was in constant dialogue with James, said when asked about the forward's minutes. "But you feel the game out. There was enough stoppages. It's not always the total minutes on here. 

"It's what kind of flow the game has and there was enough stoppages that we never left like he was being too taxed."


James has played 1,845 minutes this season, which is second behind only Russell Westbrook (2,299) among Lakers players.

He has 1,487 points for the campaign and has averaged 29.7 across his 50 games, a tally that is bettered only by Joel Embiid (29.9).

Despite James' efforts, the Lakers left themselves with too much to do against the Raptors after finding themselves 24 points down in the first.

The hosts hit back to make it 109-97 with just over two minutes to go, but the comeback fell short.

Reflecting on another disappointing night for his side, a frustrated Carmelo Anthony said: "If you take away the first quarter, we won the game. We can't be digging ourselves holes or whatever. 

"We've been digging ourselves holes to start games off with. We did it against Phoenix, we did it again today. We find ourselves in those positions often this season."

Frank Vogel led the praise for LeBron James after the four-time MVP scored 50 points in the Los Angeles Lakers' 122-109 win over the Washington Wizards.

James reached the half-century mark for the 15th time in his illustrious career, and a second time in the space of three games, to inspire the Lakers' comeback victory.

The 37-year-old was 18 of 25 from the field and made six 3-points in the space of 36 minutes as Vogel's side rallied to snap a two-game losing streak and improve to 29-37.

He is the first Lakers player with 50-or-more points in back-to-back home games since Kobe Bryant in 2007 after hitting 56 against the Golden State Warriors last week.

Adding to his growing list of records, James is also the first player in NBA history to have a 50-point game followed by a triple-double followed by another 50-point game.

Nineteen years on from starting his career at the Cleveland Cavaliers, Vogel is amazed by James' longevity at the top of the sport.

"He's really good at basketball, that LeBron James," Vogel told reporters after the game. 

"I think what stands out to me is the league has never seen a player at his stage of his career do what he's doing. Just an incredible, unbelievable, epic performance."


With six rebounds against the Wizards, James moved past Dikembe Mutombo into 12th place on the NBA's career defensive rebounds list with 8,553.

He is just two assists away from becoming the first player ever to reach 30,000 points, 10,000 rebounds and 10,000 assists in NBA history.

Reflecting on another standout display, James said: "We just needed to pick our energy up and get more detailed about how we wanted to attack the Wizards. 

"We did that, especially in the third quarter. I was able to hit a hot streak at one point. I just tried to stay in that zone as long as possible and hit a couple.

"For us to be able to come in in the third quarter, that's been one of our down quarters this year, held them to 23 points in that third and run off 37. It was big for us."

Malik Monk scored 21 points and Talen Horton-Tucker added 15 for the Lakers, helping to inflict a third defeat in four games on the 29-36 Wizards.

Kristap Porzingis's season-high 14 rebounds and 14 points looked as though it would be enough for the visitors until James took over.

"Bron was exceptional tonight, it's hard to stop him," Porzingis said. "Even at his age, he's still capable of doing incredible things like that.

"Once he got going, it was really hard to stop anything he was doing."

The Lakers return to action on Sunday when they face the NBA-leading Phoenix Suns, who have already booked a playoff spot, while the Wizards face the Portland Trail Blazers.

Gregg Popovich did not answer a single question on his record-tying 1,335th NBA win in his post-game news conference – and Jakob Poeltl revealed there was no discussion of the achievement in the San Antonio Spurs locker room either.

Popovich, in his 26th season with the Spurs, oversaw a 117-110 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers to move level with Don Nelson's all-time benchmark.

But the five-time champion and three-time Coach of the Year reserved no time for reflection on that feat in a short chat with the media.

Popovich preferred instead to discuss the Spurs' poor free-throw shooting, their "sloppy" first half and a strong defensive showing.

And Poeltl suggested it was a similar story in private, with the center – who had 18 points – expecting the 73-year-old to remain humble when he moves past Nelson with his next win.

"You guys know Pop," Poeltl said. "I don't think he really cares about stuff like that.

"It didn't even really get mentioned. I doubt it will get mentioned when we get the next win. It's just how he is."

It was left to Lakers coach Frank Vogel to salute his opposite number's accomplishment then.

"[I have] incredible respect for who he is as a coach," Vogel said. "We all, younger coaches, look up to him and admire him and respect what he's done and what he means to our game.

"I'm certainly happy for him. I wish it wasn't against us, but Pop's the best."

LeBron James has been ruled out of the Los Angeles Lakers' game with the San Antonio Spurs on Monday due to "significant" knee soreness.

Lakers head coach Frank Vogel revealed the news prior to tip-off with James battling soreness in his knee following Saturday's 56-point display in the 124-116 win over the Golden State Warriors.

Vogel said the issue was ongoing and part of the 37-year-old's game-to-game management.

"He had some soreness in the knee the day after the game that [normally] subsides by the next game," Vogel told reporters pre-game.

"When we got here [San Antonio] the soreness today was still significant enough for us to rule him out."

The Lakers are struggling with a 28-35 record seeing them sit ninth in the Western Conference but James has been exceptional this season.

The 2003 number one Draft pick is averaging 29.4 points per game this season, behind only Joel Embiid with 29.5.

James, who is also averaging 8.1 rebounds and 6.2 assists this season, has the fourth highest league-wide minutes per game this season with 36.8.

"With the heavy load that he's carrying for us this year, we know that's [games out] always a possibility," Vogel said.

"That's why we continue to list him as questionable to see how it responds in the 48 hours between games. This is just one of those days where it was significant enough to hold him out."

Vogel said he was "hopeful" the four-time NBA MVP would be fit to play the Houston Rockets on Wednesday.

"There's no words" for LeBron James' brilliance after his 56-point haul in the Los Angeles Lakers' 124-116 win over the Golden State Warriors, according to head coach Frank Vogel.

James almost single-handedly hauled the Lakers over the line, rallying from a half-time deficit with a 35-22 fourth quarter to end their four-game losing run.

The four-time NBA MVP's 56 points was his most as a Laker and tied for the third most in a single game in his storied 19-year career.

James labelled it a "desperation" win after the game, shooting 19-of-31 from the field along with six-of-11 from beyond the arc, with 10 rebounds and three assists.

“There’s no words for it," Vogel told reporters after the game. "An incredible performance by the best to ever do it in my opinion."

James' 56-point haul meant he became the fourth player aged 37 or older to score 50 or more points in a single game, alongside Michael Jordan (2001), Kobe Bryant (2016) and Jamal Crawford (2019).

"It's just remarkable, his will," Vogel added. "What he's done to transition his game to this stage of his career, in terms of his shooting, it's an example to every player to put the work into his craft.

"it's just remarkable to be doing it at this stage in his career."

Warriors head coach Steve Kerr added: “He was brilliant tonight. LeBron was amazing."

The win improves the Lakers' record to 28-35, sitting ninth in the Western Conference ahead of the final stretch of games before the playoffs.

"It feels like earlier in the season when we first lost Anthony [Davis], we lost five in a row, we were in an adjustment phase and trying to figure it out," Vogel said. "Hopefully this is the win that changes that momentum."

LeBron James is adamant the Los Angeles Lakers are still capable of ending their season on a high, despite falling to a sixth defeat in seven games on Tuesday.

The Lakers lost 109-104 to the Dallas Mavericks at Arena to slide to a season-worst seven games below .500, leaving them ninth in the Western Conference.

James led the scoring with 26 points, one more than Mavs star Luka Doncic, but it was not enough for the 27-34 hosts as their poor run continued.

But despite the Lakers' ongoing struggles, James is not ready to write off the remainder of the 2021-22 campaign with 21 games of the regular season still to go.

"We still have games to play," he told reporters. "Until you stomp me out, cut my head off, bury me 12 feet under, then I got a chance. So that's my confidence.

"Obviously, at the end of the day, we got to come in here and win ball games and we got to play better but as long as we've got more games to play, we should have a chance.

"I feel like poop right now. But tomorrow is a new day and I'm going to be prepared and ready for the Clippers on Thursday. That's just my mindset. That's just who I am."

James has missed 17 games this season through injury, but the 37-year-old shot down suggestions he will use the final stages of this season as an opportunity to rest up.

"The only way it'll be back to full strength is with rest," he said. "But I don't have the luxury of having rest. It can wait until the off-season."


The Lakers made up a 21-point deficit to lead 100-94 with seven minutes to play, but 11 consecutive points ensured the Mavericks claimed an eighth win in 10 outings.

Luka Doncic stepped up by scoring seven of his 25 points in the final quarter and is now averaging 27.5 per game for the season – a tally bettered by only six others.

"We stayed together and just executed the game plan, played the game," Doncic said. "My mentality is to close the game with the best shot possible."

Los Angeles managed only four points in the final seven-plus minutes and head coach Frank Vogel accepted there is a lot to improve on.

"Our guys really competed," he said. "Our helpers really competed, but he had that stretch in crunch time where he scored a few buckets in a row. 

"It wasn't good enough. It hurts. All these guys are hurting in there. We're putting in the work."

Los Angeles Lakers head coach Frank Vogel insists there is alignment and good energy within his roster despite letting the trade deadline pass without making any moves.

The Lakers were one of the big players with player movement during the off-season but have struggled to 26-30 record this season.

Russell Westbrook's acquisition has not brought the hoped impact and he was linked with a trade but that did not materialise, nor any other potential moves.

The Lakers' inaction has reportedly led to some friction between vice president of basketball operations and general manager Rob Pelinka and star pair LeBron James and Anthony Davis but Vogel downplayed that, insisting there was good energy within the roster.

"I think there's just a natural reset energy to our group, knowing that the trade deadline has passed," Vogel told reporters.

"This is the group that we put together to start the year. This is a group we believe in."

Vogel had said "if there's a way to improve our team, we'll improve our team" ahead of Thursday's trade deadline, while he also acknowledged the team's energy "isn’t good right now" after Tuesday's 131-116 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks.

But the Lakers head coach was buoyed by Friday's practice and film session ahead of Saturday's game with the Golden State Warriors and a potential run down the stretch to push for the playoffs.

"I think with that deadline passing and having a refreshed mindset today, our group had really good energy about going out and trying to win a game [Saturday] and understanding and believing in what we can do this year," Vogel said.

Los Angeles Lakers coach Frank Vogel has not ruled out a trade involving Russell Westbrook ahead of Thursday's deadline.

Nine-time NBA All-Star Westbrook missed his first game of the season on Wednesday as the Lakers fell to a 107-105 defeat against the Portland Trail Blazers.

The 33-year-old's absence was put down to a back injury sustained the previous evening against the Milwaukee Bucks.

Westbrook spent the final quarter of that game watching from the sidelines, having earlier been jeered by his own fans, and later questioned Vogel's rotation policy.

That has done little to help the relationship between Westbrook and Vogel, with strong suggestions the 2017 MVP could be on his way out.

And rather than put an end to those rumours on the back of the defeat to Portland, Vogel instead offered a rather cryptic response.

Asked if there is a chance Westbrook will not be a part of the team once the trade deadline passes, Vogel said: "If there's a way to improve our team, we'll improve our team. 

"I've got nothing else to say about the trade deadline."


Westbrook, traded to the Lakers from the Washington Wizards last August, has 1,006 points for the season, a tally bettered only by LeBron James (1,133) among Lakers players.

But Westbrook's 18.3 average through 55 games is his lowest since 2009-10, and down from the 31.6 managed with Oklahoma City Thunder in 2016-17 when crowned MVP.

He was on court for just 26 minutes against the Bucks prior to hinting at his displeasure with Vogel, who in response insisted no player is bigger than the team.

"The needs of the team always come first," he said on Wednesday. "We have to be willing to do whatever it takes to get the Lakers a win. 

"Sometimes he's going to be in there for that, sometimes he's not."

The Lakers have now lost six of their last eight games and are 26-30 for the season, with a winning percentage of .464 placing them ninth in the Western Conference.

James, who top-scored for the Lakers against the Trail Blazers with 30 points, admitted the trade rumours are having a negative impact on his side.

"Obviously it's something that's weighing on this group that we're trying to all get through," he said.

"It almost feels like fog in the air and we're all trying to see what's on the other side of it."

Russell Westbrook does not feel he has anything to prove as he made light of being booed by his own Los Angeles Lakers fans during Tuesday's loss to the Milwaukee Bucks.

The nine-time NBA All-Star was benched in the fourth quarter for the second game running as the Lakers fell to a fifth defeat in seven outings, going down 131-116.

With nine minutes remaining at the Arena and his side down by 24 points, Westbrook was jeered after making two turnovers in the space of 12 seconds.

But Westbrook, who was traded to the Lakers from the Washington Wizards last August, is not letting the negative reaction get to him.

"It's a sign of respect," he said while smiling. "My mindset and how I think about this game and what I've been able to do for this game is not predicated on boos.

"I've a platform that I'm able to use to be able to do other things that God has blessed me to be able to do and I will continue to do those things.

"That's regardless of whether people boo for me, cheer for me, cuss me out, call me names, it doesn't really matter.

"The most important part is that I continue to use my gift to be able to play basketball and use that platform to be able to help other people around the world. That's all I can do."


Westbrook had 10 points off 3-of-11 shooting, 10 assists and four turnovers on another disappointing day for the Lakers' former MVP.

He has 1,006 points for the season, a tally bettered only by LeBron James (1,103) among Lakers players.

But Westbrook's 18.3 average through 55 games is his lowest since 2009-10, and down from the 31.6 managed with Oklahoma City Thunder in 2016-17 when crowned MVP.

However, responding to criticism regarding his loss of form, Westbrook said: "I shouldn't have to prove anything to anyone, to be honest. 

"I've put so much work into my game and I've earned so much respect in the league. I don't have to prove anything to anyone. 

"I've earned the right to be in the closing line-up standing.

"The numbers confirm it. I don't have to go into it any further. But I don't have to decide, that's the decision of the coach. Unfortunately, I just have to see how I deal with it."

Westbrook was on the court for just 26 minutes against the Bucks and suggested after the game he is not happy with Frank Vogel's constantly changing line-ups.

"You never know when you're coming in, you never know when you're coming out," he said. "You never know when you're playing, you never know... a bunch of things. 

"I'm speaking personally, so it's a difficult process to be able to figure out and create some rhythm and some consistency where we can see what we're able to do as a team.

"But those decisions are made by him and his coaching staff, and you've got to live with it and move on."

Giannis Antetokounmpo produced another eye-catching display to help the Milwaukee Bucks to victory over the Los Angeles Lakers and was hailed by team-mate Khris Middleton for "making it look easy".

The two-time NBA MVP scored 44 points on 17-for-20 shooting, while registering eight assists and 14 rebounds as the Bucks earned a 131-116 victory in Tuesday's contest at the Arena.

In doing so, Antetokounmpo joined legendary figures Wilt Chamberlain and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar as only the third person with 40+ points, 10+ rebounds and five-or-more assists on 85-per-cent-plus shooting in a game.

Indeed, the 27-year-old has now had three games with 40+ points, 10+ rebounds, five-plus assists and no turnovers. Over the past 30 years, only David Robinson and Dirk Nowitzki have achieved that feat, doing so once each.

Middleton, who scored all 21 of his points in the first half, was blown away by the ease in which Antetokounmpo took apart the lacklustre Lakers, who had LeBron James and Anthony Davis in their line-up.

"He made it look easy, honestly," Middleton said. "That just shows the level of how he's playing. 

"He was knocking down his jump shot. He's got guys going for his pump fake. Just the way he let the game come to him and stay patient, it was pretty fun to watch."


The 44 points registered by Antetokounmpo was his second-highest tally of the season, behind only the 47 he managed against the same opponents on November 17.

He is third in terms of points scorers in NBA this season with 1,343, behind DeMar DeRozan (1,360) and Trae Young (1,364), while only Joel Embiid (29.4) averages more points per game than his 29.2.

Reflecting on another good day both personally and for the Bucks, who have now won four in a row to move to 35-21 for the campaign, Antetokounmpo said: "Obviously when you make shots, the game is a lot easier, looks a lot better.

"I know I'm going to try to get my team-mates involved and look for the best way to help the team, but sometimes when you start making shots, you feel better about yourself, you defend better. Today was one of those games."

The victory was perhaps not as straightforward in the end as it might have been for the Bucks, who led by 30 points midway through the third quarter, only to let the Lakers back into the game.

But the hosts could only claw back to within 10 points of their opponents and have now lost five of their last seven games, seeing them fall back to three games below .500.

"We played a terrible defensive half," Lakers coach Frank Vogel said. "Disposition, competition, the level of competitive spirit we showed for a big game was very disappointing. 

"Two straight games we started with a terrible defensive half. We've got to get that right."

The Lakers will get that opportunity to put it right when they take on the Portland Trail Blazers on Wednesday, while the Bucks are next in action on Thursday with a showdown against the NBA-leading Phoenix Suns.

Frank Vogel hailed the "mental toughness" of Anthony Davis and his Los Angeles Lakers side after snapping a three-game losing run with a 99-94 win over the Portland Trail Blazers.

Davis stepped up in the absence of LeBron James – missing a fourth straight game with knee soreness – with a double-double of 30 points and 15 rebounds in Wednesday's contest.

The eight-time NBA All-Star has now had at least 30 points and 15 rebounds in three games this season and has averaged 29.3 points over his last three outings.

Davis's latest haul helped the Lakers improve to 25-27 in the Western Conference, and head coach Vogel was particularly pleased with the spirit he saw from the 28-year-old.

"He had some great sequences of grabbing rebounds in traffic," Vogel said.

"Tonight was about mental toughness and making enough plays and shots. It was a hell of a game by Anthony."

Nineteen of Davis's 30 points arrived in the final 12 minutes, with seven of his 15 rebounds coming in the fourth quarter

"I just tried to come out with the mindset of ending the streak," Davis said. "We have to play with some urgency. We just fought hard tonight. It was a great game for us."

Carmelo Anthony added 24 for the Lakers, who had lost to the Philadelphia 76ers, the Charlotte Hornets and the Atlanta Hawks in their previous three games.

Despite the best efforts of 30-point Norman Powell, Portland have now lost three in a row and five of their last six in a run that has seen them slip to 10th in the Western Conference.

"We had a couple breakdowns today," Powell said. "We had some good stops but gave them second and third-chance opportunities."

The Lakers are back in action against the Los Angeles Clippers on Thursday, while Portland face the Oklahoma City Thunder on Friday.

Los Angeles Lakers head coach Frank Vogel says LeBron James' absence is preventative with the number one goal being that he is "healthy for the long haul".

James is listed as doubtful for the Lakers' clash with the Portland Trail Blazers on Wednesday due to knee swelling, having missed their past three games.

The four-time MVP had returned to Los Angeles prior to Sunday's 129-121 loss to the Atlanta Hawks after undergoing an MRI on his left knee.

"We're still working on trying to get the swelling down," Vogel told reporters on Tuesday.

"He's listed as doubtful for tomorrow. He's not here today. He got treatment outside of our facility today."

The 37-year-old had been in excellent offensive form prior to the knee problem, having scored 25 points or more in 18 straight games.

Despite that, the Lakers are battling with a 24-27 record but Vogel said they would not rush James back.

“The number one goal is that he’s healthy for the long haul," Vogel said. "Everything is else less important than that. We have to win games when he’s out.”

Vogel also confirmed that the Lakers had left James out for the past three games for preventative reasons, with the swelling offering concern for a potential injury.

LeBron James has returned to Los Angeles for treatment on his left knee after missing a third straight game as the Lakers went down 129-121 to the Atlanta Hawks on Sunday.

Lakers head coach Frank Vogel confirmed that James had returned to LA on Saturday, having undergone an MRI that revealed "general swelling".

The 37-year-old, who has scored 25 points or more in 18 straight games, had initially missed Thursday's 105-87 loss to the Philadelphia 76ers after waking up with soreness.

"As long as the swelling is there, he's going to be out and we'll get him back as soon as we can," Vogel told reporters. "Just going to keep an eye on it day to day."

Four-time MVP James is averaging 29.1 points, tied for second in the league, with 7.7 rebounds and 6.3 assists. The veteran is averaging 36.6 minutes per game, which ranks fourth in the NBA.

"I think about it every day," Vogel said when asked about James' workload. "We're always mindful of the load that he's carrying, in constant communication with him and the medical team.

"In terms of what we do going forward with the knee and where he's at, it's really a heavy lean on the medical staff and [trainer] Mike Mancias and what they feel is best. It's really not a head-coach thing as much as it is relying on the medical team."

The Lakers are 24-27 in the Western Conference after finishing their six-game road trip with a 2-4 record.

Los Angeles Lakers coach Frank Vogel had no issues with Russell Westbrook going for gold late on in Friday's defeat to the Charlotte Hornets.

Without the injured LeBron James and Anthony Davis, the Lakers went down 117-114 to Charlotte, as they slipped to 24-26 for the season.

It was a second successive defeat for the Lakers, who have won just three games out of their last 10, a slump that has put Vogel under pressure.

In the absence of his fellow star players, Westbrook did his utmost to push Los Angeles over the line, scoring 35 points and adding four rebounds and five assists.

Yet it was Westbrook who missed a crucial three-pointer with 0.7 seconds remaining, the point guard having gone for glory with the Lakers trailing by two points, instead of trying to take the game to overtime.

Westbrook's effort hit the rim, leaving P.J. Watson to go up the other end and add a further point for the Hornets with a free throw.

Vogel defended his decision to take Westbrook off in the final stages of a defeat to the Indiana Pacers earlier this month, but after Friday's game, the Lakers coach was keen to stress his appreciation of the 33-year-old's performance.

"The hottest guy in the gym has the ball in his hands ready to make a play," Vogel told reporters when asked for his thoughts on Westbrook's decision to go for the three points.

"He was three for six from the three in the second half and went for the win. He knocks that down, we're talking about one hell of a win. 

"It just didn’t go down for us. Russell was spectacular in that second half. He just really willed our team into an opportunity to steal one on the road.

"I really appreciated Russell's performance tonight. I really want to credit [him]. He was very determined tonight."

"I had just made two [three-pointers] just before that, so I will live and die with that one," said Westbrook, who has 945 points to his name this season at an average of 18.9 per game.

Miles Bridges was tasked with marking Westbrook in the fourth, a tussle the Hornets' small forward – who had 26 points – enjoyed.

"I know he didn’t want to go to overtime," Bridges explained. "I tried to get a good contest on him."

Westbrook added: "I think [Miles] was trying to say I was too small or something, but that ain't the case and he knows better than that.

"It was definitely on my mind and I was like, ok, that's going to be a good trigger for me. I was able to turn it up a little notch, especially during that time of the game."

The Lakers are back in action on Sunday, against the Atlanta Hawks.

The teams met earlier in January, before the Lakers' dismal run, with Los Angeles claiming a 134-118 home win.

Los Angeles' points tally in that win was the most they had scored in a game against Atlanta since 1993 (135).

LeBron James has been hailed by Los Angeles Lakers head coach Frank Vogel as "the most unique player in the history of the game" after his second-half performance at center on Friday.

James finished with 29 points, seven rebounds and five assists after playing exclusively at center in the second half of Friday's 116-105 win over the Orlando Magic.

The four-time MVP was moved into Dwight Howard's role after half-time with the Lakers immediately going on a decisive 20-2 to overcome their 62-54 deficit.

"He's the most unique player in the history of the game," Vogel told reporters about James.

"We won a championship with him playing point guard two years ago, he's been a ball-handling wing throughout his career and he's been playing center for us.

"It's pretty remarkable, and for him to be doing it at this stage of his career, it's even more remarkable."

Vogel also praised Russell Westbrook who was benched in the fourth quarter of Wednesday's 111-104 loss to the Indiana Pacers.

Westbrook, who joined the Lakers from the Washington Wizards in the off-season, has been the subject of much criticism this season.

The 33-year-old Lakers point guard had 18 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists against the Magic.

“He’s all-in on doing whatever is necessary to get the Lakers in position to win a championship, for sure," Vogel said.

Westbrook added: “I was upset about [being benched on Wednesday] and I was more upset that we didn’t win the game.

"I’ve been here doing my job since day one and doing everything asked of me. I want to continue to do that for the betterment of the team."

Vogel also added that there was no firm timeframe on All-Star forward Anthony Davis' return from a knee injury.

James has scored 25 or more points in 16 consecutive games, which have all coincided with Davis' stint on the sidelines.

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