LeBron James skips his “Zero Dark Thirty-23” mode this year during the NBA playoffs.
The Lakers star normally leaves social media during the postseason to maximize his focus, but because of the coronavirus pandemic, James said his self-imposed ritual will change.
“I don’t turn off my phone during this run. I can not afford it. I have to keep checking in with my family every day, ”James said Tuesday. ESPN. “Making sure everything is going well, especially in the uncertainty about what 2020 has brought us all. So I can’t afford to do that, just lose direct contact with everyone.”
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In recent years, James would limit the time he spent on Twitter and Instagram in April through June to sharpen his focus. But during those playoff runs, he had the balance between playing home and away, flying back from road arenas to spend time with his wife, Savannah; mother, Gloria; and three children, Bronny, Bryce and Zhuri.
James specifically mentioned his mom as someone he ‘checks in with’.
James said social media offers him a way to keep up with his family. If the Lakers make it to the NBA finals, James could be in the Orlando bubble for three and a half months – the longest he’s ever been separated from his wife and children.
The NBA will return Thursday after the season’s suspension on March 11.
James’ Lakers led the Western Conference and the Milwaukee Buck topped the NBA rankings.