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LeBron James Modifies MAGA Hat To Make Political Statement Before Surprise Playoff Loss

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Shut up and dribble,” he was told.

To be clear, Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James has every right to talk about whatever China will allow him to speak on.

But perhaps the 35-year-old NBA savant should actually pay some heed to the words of Laura Ingraham after the way his Lakers were embarrassed on national television Tuesday night.

After all, it’s embarrassing enough for the team with the best record in the Western Conference to lose to a team that barely made the playoffs at all. It’s even worse when that kind of loss comes after the type of political grandstanding that might make Joe Biden blush.

Going into Tuesday night’s 100-93 loss to the Portland Trail Blazers, James saw fit to wear a “Make America Great Again” cap.

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No, James’ opinion on President Donald Trump hadn’t suddenly changed.

Instead, the “Great Again” on the hat had been crossed out and replaced with a new phrase so that the cap read: “Make America Arrest The Cops Who Killed Breonna Taylor.”

James and some of his Lakers teammates wore the hats to the arena, and people obviously noticed:

Calls for the police officers involved in serving a no-knock warrant on Taylor’s apartment have become a popular rallying cry for the Black Lives Matter movement. The incident eventually resulted in Taylor being shot and killed by police.

While Taylor’s story is undoubted heart-wrenching, it’s more than fair to ask what her tragedy has to do with the NBA playoffs.

The answer, obviously, is nothing.

Perhaps if James wasn’t so focused on social justice issues, he and his Lakers wouldn’t have looked so lethargic against a Trail Blazers team missing one of their best perimeter defenders in Trevor Ariza.

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James did stuff the box score against Portland, notching 23 points, 17 rebounds and 16 assists.

But a look under the hood shows that those gaudy statistics aren’t as impressive as they first seem.

Even ignoring the fact that the Lakers shot a putrid 35.1 percent from the field as a team, James himself had some mental gaffes that showed his head wasn’t in the game that he’s paid $37 million a year to play.

James accounted for nearly half of his team’s nine turnovers with four himself.

And again, with Portland’s best perimeter defender opting out of the NBA restart, James’ turnovers were of the sloppy variety.

James also missed three of his seven free throw attempts, which is actually not terrible, but two of those misses came deep in the fourth quarter, with a chance to tie the game.

That’s to say nothing of his 1-for-5 performance from beyond the 3-point arc.

And if there’s any doubt that James’ mind was in places other than his job, look no further than his shameless plug for “Space Jam 2,” which also came before the playoff loss.

So yes, LeBron James doesn’t have to shut up and dribble. He can do whatever he wants.

But if he doesn’t want to suffer just the fourth No. 1 seed versus No. 8 seed upset since the seven-game first format was introduced, he may want to at least stay focused and dribble.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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