LeBron James shows support for USMNT ahead of match with Netherlands

Sports

Everyone appears to have World Cup fever as the United States Men’s National Team prepares to take on the Netherlands in the Round of 16 Saturday morning in Qatar. 

As the USMNT looks to advance to the quarterfinals for the first time since 2002, one of basketball’s greats is showing his support for the home team. 

A soccer fan before a FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Group B match between Iran and USMNT at Al Thumama Stadium on November 29, 2022, in Doha, Qatar. 

A soccer fan before a FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Group B match between Iran and USMNT at Al Thumama Stadium on November 29, 2022, in Doha, Qatar.  (Brad Smith/ISI Photos/Getty Images)

A day before the Los Angeles Lakers game against the Milwaukee Bucks, LeBron James was seen sporting a blue national team jersey as the Lakers prepared to head east on Thursday for a five-game road trip. 

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The Lakers beat the Bucks 133-129 Friday night behind a season-high 44 points from Anthony Davis. 

James also passed Magic Johnson for sixth on the all-time-assist list with a 28-point, 11-assist, and eight-rebound performance. 

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James now has 10,144 career assists, 11 ahead of Johnson’s 10,133. 

LeBron James #6 of the Los Angeles Lakers smiles during the game against the Milwaukee Bucks on December 2, 2022, at the Fiserv Forum Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. 

LeBron James #6 of the Los Angeles Lakers smiles during the game against the Milwaukee Bucks on December 2, 2022, at the Fiserv Forum Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  (Jeff Haynes/NBAE via Getty Images)

“It means a lot, obviously,” James said. “The way Magic approached the game, it was very infectious. His teammates loved playing with him because of the joy he played with and the ability to pass the ball and get other guys involved. He was always excited about seeing his teammates be great. I always admired that in him. What’s even more humbling and super-duper cool is the fact that I’m doing it in a Laker uniform and knowing how much Magic means to the Laker franchise.”

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All eyes will turn to USA’s game against the Netherlands Saturday morning at 10:00 am ET. 

LeBron James, #6 of the Los Angeles Lakers, watches from the sidelines during the first half of the NBA game against the Phoenix Suns at Footprint Center on November 22, 2022, in Phoenix, Arizona. 

LeBron James, #6 of the Los Angeles Lakers, watches from the sidelines during the first half of the NBA game against the Phoenix Suns at Footprint Center on November 22, 2022, in Phoenix, Arizona.  (Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

The USMNT advanced to the Round of 16 after defeating Iran on Tuesday, winning 1-0 on a Christian Pulisic goal in the 38th minute. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report

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