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Kelly Oubre Jr. had a chance to put in some work with LeBron James this summer, and the Washington Wizards small forward feels better off for it, according to a feature by Candace Buckner of the Washington Post.
Now, Oubre Jr. seems more confident heading into his third season, with an improved ability to defend perhaps the league’s most talented position.
“That’s something that has been on my mind a lot. Last year we played LeBron (and the Cleveland Cavaliers) in the preseason. He went off. He had transition dunks. He made me look like a little kid,” Oubre told the Washington Post.
“But ever since then I’ve learned, studied him, watched him and it got easier and easier to maintain and stay in front. The next step for me going into Year 3 is to try to be the best defensive player out there. It’s just holding my resistance. No fear. Attacking my matchups like he’s the best player in the world.”
Oubre, 23, averaged 6.3 points and 3.3 rebounds off the Wizards bench last season. He played in 79 games and started five.
He is expected to play an important role in helping John Wall, Bradley Beal and the rest of the Wizards challenge James and the Cavs in the Eastern Conference.
“Obviously working with LeBron, his mind-set is just to get better every second of his life,” Oubre said. “And I’ve learned that from him. Just the way he works, his work ethic.”