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J.R. Smith declares that LeBron James will play in season opener

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J.R. sure seems confident, but we’ll see if he’s ultimately right.

2017 NBA Finals - Game Three Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images

Tyronn Lue still hasn’t said whether LeBron James, who is dealing with an ankle injury, will suit up in the Cavaliers season opener against the Boston Celtics.

J.R. Smith, however, seemed a little more confident, via Cleveland.com:

"Oh, he's gonna go," Smith said after practice Monday. "He's gonna go, trust me that. I don't care what he's gotta do, he's gonna play."

Smith, of course, doesn’t actually know if James is going to play or not (as far as we know,) but cited James competitiveness and his history of never having missed a season opener in his NBA career, also via Cleveland.com:

"It's different when -- obviously the preseason and regular season -- we were talking about it, he's never missed, since he was eight years old and he started playing, he's never missed a first game," Smith said. "I'm preparing for him to play."

For his part, Tyronn Lue says that he genuinely doesn’t know if James is going to be good to go, but that he was preparing as though James was going to be suiting up as well.

"You know I never hide stuff from you guys," Lue said. "I really don't know, I mean, just depends on how he feels after today. ... I'm preparing that he is."

If I had to guess, I’d say that James is playing. He’s going to be hyped up for this one, and Lue has functionally said that it’ll be up to how he’s feeling if he goes for not. Something tells me that adrenaline will have LeBron telling the training staff that he feels just fine.

Hopefully the team won’t let him put himself in harms way, but given their track record of being careful, it’s probably fair to assume that they’re not chancing much if he’s out there on the court.