Basketball: LeBron fuelled by snub in NBA best-player poll

LeBron James is a four-time NBA champion, four-time NBA Most Valuable Player and four-time NBA Finals MVP.
LeBron James is a four-time NBA champion, four-time NBA Most Valuable Player and four-time NBA Finals MVP.PHOTO: AFP

LOS ANGELES (AFP) - LeBron James is taking issue with a pre-season poll that doesn't give him a vote in the discussion about who is the National Baskebtall Association's best player entering the new campaign.

An ESPN survey of 10 NBA executives and scouts was evenly split between United States Olympic hero Kevin Durant of the Brooklyn Nets and Greek star Giannis Antetokounmpo, who led the Milwaukee Bucks to their first NBA crown in 50 years.

While a story with the survey said 36-year-old James was the only other name brought up by anyone, an honourable mention wasn't good enough for Los Angeles Lakers star James, a four-time NBA champion, four-time NBA Most Valuable Player and four-time NBA Finals MVP.

"THANK YOU!" James tweeted on Thursday (Aug 19). "As if I didn't need more to (fuel) ME!" with a gas pump emoji symbolising the snub's energising impact.

James averaged 25.0 points, 7.7 rebounds, 7.8 assists and 1.1 steals a game last season for the Lakers, who lost in the first round of the play-offs to NBA Finals losers Phoenix. It marked the first time in his career that James went out in the opening round of the play-offs.

The Lakers, who lost Anthony Davis to a strained groin in that first-round series while leading 2-1, added playmaker Russell Westbrook to the line-up for the upcoming season as they seek a second NBA crown in three seasons.