Bronny James addressed the potential of playing with LeBron in the NBA

USC guard Bronny James said Tuesday that it isn’t a priority of his to play with his father, LeBron James, in the NBA with the Los Angeles Lakers next season.

He, instead, just wants to create his own path on the hardwood.

Bronny announced on April 5 that he would test the draft and enter the NCAA transfer portal following the departure of USC head coach Andy Enfield. He is among the 80-plus prospects competing in the combine in front of executives and scouts this week in Chicago, Illinois.

The 19-year-old confirmed that he hasn’t met or worked out with any teams yet in the predraft process. However, he revealed what he wants executives to know about him when speaking with a large gathering of reporters at the Wintrust Arena.

I’m a genuine person. I’ve gotten a lot of lessons from my mom and my dad but also just putting that Bronny James narrative out there more instead of just being LeBron James’ son. I think that is really important for me.

Bronny was cleared to participate in the draft combine on Monday by a panel of three physicians. He was unanimously approved after he was diagnosed with an “anatomically and functionally significant congenital heart defect” following a cardiac arrest in July.

He was sidelined for four months following that medical event. He eventually debuted with the Trojans on Dec. 10 after missing the first 11 games of the season, recording four points, three rebounds, two assists and two steals in 16 minutes.

After going through such a serious health situation, Bronny expressed his gratitude for playing 25 games this past season and being among the draft hopefuls performing this week.

I think it all is just a great thing to happen to me in terms of just being grateful for everything and stuff like that. I’ve put in the work and stuff like that to get back, so I feel like I’ve earned the opportunity. I’m extremely grateful for everything that has been given to me.

Bronny dazzled on Monday in various on-court shooting drills after hitting 19-of-25 shot attempts in the 3-point star drill. He measured in at 6 feet, 1 1/2 inches barefoot, with a 6-foot, 7 1/4-inch wingspan, and registered a 40 1/2-inch vertical jump.

He produced four points, four rebounds and two steals on 2-of-8 shooting from the field in 19 minutes in his first scrimmage game on Tuesday. He looked to be in outstanding shape and was comfortable against his peers despite only making 25% of his attempts.

Bronny, who has until May 29 to withdraw from the draft and return to college, will know more about his stock after the combine. He was viewed as a potential first-round pick before his health situation and is attempting to show teams why he deserves to be drafted this year.

He has been heavily linked to the Lakers because of his father, who previously stated his goal was to be teammates with him before retiring. LeBron said he hadn’t thought much about it after the Lakers were eliminated from the playoffs.

Bronny, who didn’t participate in media interviews this past season at USC, had the opportunity to address the potential pairing with his father and said it hasn’t ever been his dream to play with him.

My dream has always just been to put my name out, make a name for myself and get to the NBA, which is everyone’s end goal that’s here. I never thought about just playing with my dad, but of course, he has brought it up a couple of times. But yeah, I don’t think about it much.

Bronny averaged 4.8 points, 2.8 rebounds and 2.1 assists on 36.6% shooting from the field with the Trojans. He scored in double figures three times, including a season-high 15 points and three assists on Dec. 30 in a loss to Oregon State.

He said he would take his time with his looming deadline and figure out where his heart wants him to be. He said often throughout his nearly 20-minute media availability that he was happy to just be playing basketball, something that will undoubtedly weigh into his decision.

In other words: He will be focused on building his name and career.

“I would be happy about getting to the league instead of me thinking about playing with my dad,” Bronny said. “That’s not my mindset right now at all. I’m just trying to put in the work and see where it takes me from there.”

Story originally appeared on Rookie Wire