LeBron endorses JaVale for DPOY award
Ronald Cortes / Getty Images Sport / Getty

LeBron James endorsed his Los Angeles Lakers teammate JaVale McGee as a candidate for the NBA's Defensive Player of the Year award during Saturday's shootaround.

Heading into their matchup against the Portland Trail Blazers, McGee is averaging a league-high 3.3 blocks.

After winning back-to-back championships with the Golden State Warriors, McGee signed for the veteran's minimum to join the Lakers. Now as a starter, he's logging over 20 minutes a game for the first time in his career since the 2011-12 campaign.

The Lakers are currently sitting in 12th in the Western Conference and are in the league's bottom third (21st) when it comes to defensive rating (112.4). With McGee on the court, Los Angeles improves to 101.2, which would be the third best defensive rating in the league.

When McGee is off the court, the Lakers' rating falls to 118.4, which would place them behind the Cleveland Cavaliers (117.3) for the worst mark in the NBA.

The Lakers head into their matchup against the Blazers after a win against the Dallas Mavericks, where McGee matched his season-high with five blocks to go along with 16 points and 15 rebounds.

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LeBron endorses JaVale for DPOY award
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