When the Miami Heat won the NBA championship in June of 2012, they did so mainly on the strength of LeBron James’ emerging interior game. LeBron wasn’t endlessly tossing down jump hook after jump hook in that championship round, and to his credit his strength as a creative scorer and passer in the low post had been in place for years, but his comfort level on the mid and low block was light years ahead of where it was in years’ past. He was starting possessions from 12 or 15 feet away from the hoop instead of the customary 25, and it made all the difference in Miami’s world (championship).
The most obvious link to the step from hesitant post-worker to championship-grabbing post-dominator was the trip to Texas James made in the summer of 2011. Two-time NBA champion and 1994 MVP Hakeem Olajuwon put James through the paces in a training session we talked about here, and just today (via Twitter user @ningrim), video of the workout has surfaced.
It’s for the basketball junkies, to be sure, but it’s a fun watch that has me dying to find my way to the low block in an empty gym. Watch: