LeBron James is going to go down as one of the greatest players in NBA history. Even if Michael Jordan is considered the GOAT, LeBron’s longevity in the league is still unheralded and what he is doing for the Los Angeles Lakers at his age is incredible.
It has been well-documented that LeBron James spends a lot of money on his body in order to stay in the best shape possible. While injuries are becoming more frequent at his age, he is still one of the best in the entire sport when he is on the court.
Not only has LeBron been great for so long but he has done so with a pristine record that has no real controversies. That pristine record is now being challenged as LeBron’s longevity is being credited to his use of performance-enhancing drugs.
NBA Rumors: Chael Sonnen accuses Lakers’ LeBron James of taking EPO.
MMA legend Chael Sonnen, who once served a two-year suspension from competition for PED infractions, claims that LeBron James is on the performance-enhancing drug, Erythropoietin (EPO). Sonnen made the claims during a podcast appearance on Andrew Schulz’s Flagrant with Akaash Singh.
"“If the world understood what LeBron did […] If you knew what these performance enhancers did, then you would know why it does matter. We have the same drug guy, I know exactly what he’s doing. […] EPO matters, it’s the reason LeBron takes it, it matters. EPO increases your red blood cells, which gives you endurance so you can play all game long.”"
EPO is one of the many performance enhancers banned by the NBA. Fellow MMA fighter T.J. Dillashaw was also suspended two years for using EPO while he was preparing to go down in weight to fight Henry Cejudo.
While Sonnen definitely is an expert in the PED world (he later admitted to currently using PEDs to stay in shape as he is no longer competing), LeBron’s clean track record is going to take precedence here. Professional sports take steroid use very seriously regardless of how big the star is. The idea that LeBron has been getting away with PEDs this entire time seems far-fetched.
However, it does raise an interesting conversation and it is not worth outright ignoring. This is not some random guy on the internet who works at GMC claiming that he saw LeBron take something he was not supposed to.
It will be interesting to see how LeBron and the Lakers respond to these allegations, if at all.