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5 players who dominated LeBron James in a one-on-one matchup

LeBron James
LeBron James
Modified 26 Sep 2020, 01:19 IST

LeBron James is a freak of nature. He's among the very few players in the NBA to possess the varied skillset to play in all five positions.

The LA Lakers star can drive to the basket, dunk or just pull up from anywhere on the court. As difficult as it is to defeat the 4-time MVP in a basketball game, it's even harder to get the better of him in a one-on-one matchup.

However, in this article, we'll take a look at some of the rare instances when players managed to beat King James in a one-on-one situation.

5 players who dominated LeBron James one-on-one

In his illustrious career spanning 17 years, no single player has managed to dominate LeBron James on the offensive end and shut him down completely on the defensive end at the same time. In this article, we take a look at five instances when a few players came close to doing that.

#5 Jimmy Butler

Chicago Bulls vs Indiana Pacers
Chicago Bulls vs Indiana Pacers

This is one of the rare instances where a team ended up losing a series despite a player successfully locking down LeBron James. In Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals in 2013, the Chicago Bulls upset the mighty Miami Heat, thanks to Jimmy Butler.

In the absence of the Bulls' Luol Deng, Jimmy Butler was asked to guard LeBron James in Game 1.


Butler's toughness and determination were on full display as he restricted James to just two points in the first half. Butler also scored 21 points and helped Chicago clinch the first game of the series.

Though Miami Heat came back strongly to win the series, Jimmy Butler announced his presence to the world as one of the best defenders in the league.

#4 Andre Iguodala

2015 NBA Finals - Practice
2015 NBA Finals - Practice

Andre Iguodala was awarded the NBA Finals MVP in 2015 just for his outstanding defense on LeBron James. Even though Iguodala didn't 'shut him down' completely, he wore James down and forced him to take low percentage shots throughout the series.

LeBron James was still the best scorer in the 2014-15 NBA Finals between the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Golden State Warriors. But when James was guarded by Iggy, the former only made 33% of his field goals and was 11-46 on contested shots made.

Also read: LeBron James' 5 worst performances in an NBA Playoff series.

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Published 26 Sep 2020, 01:19 IST
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