According to Charles Barkley, we have a new rivalry in the NBA, and it's the one between the Clippers and Lakers but predominantly between their two best players, Kawhi and LeBron. In a recent interview for the Washington Post, Barkley talked about some of his predictions for the upcoming season and how he believes things will turn out for some of these teams.
After the first matchup between LeBron and Kawhi, which went in Kawhi's and Clipper's favor, Barkley concluded LeBron is no longer a better player. During the game, it was evident, Kawhi took his game to a whole other level after winning a championship with the Raptors. According to Barkley, Kawhi is now a much better player than LeBron in every single aspect of the game.
"At this stage, Kawhi is a better player than LeBron. He does everything better. He's a better defender, a better scorer. He's better at imposing his will on the game. You just saw him will a good Toronto team to the championship. They played Philadelphia and then Milwaukee [in the playoffs], and it's fair to say they were underdogs in both of those series. But Kawhi would not let them loose."
Barkley also talked about the realization star players have when they recognize they are no longer the best, and young players are slowly but surely taking over. That is slowly but surely happening to LeBron James, who turned 34, and despite taking great care of his body, age is an essential factor, and obviously, the game would be much easier for him if he was 5-10 years younger.
"When it hits, it's a shocker. You start to realize how hard the game is. When you're 25 or 26, the game is easy.