For years, Hockey Oladjuon has trained NBA stars in the art of posts, teaching his feet and wizardry in battle.
If he wanted, Chris Bosh could lead a different niche group: big men play with LeBron James.
"Playing with LeBron was like buying a Ferrari," Bosch said. "You know it's the best in the world. It looks amazing when you see it. But you have no idea how powerful it is when you try to ride it. You can go on the road right away."
Bosh learned the hard way. He will soon enter the Hall of Fame, thanks to winning two Miami Award titles and winning 11 All-Star selections, including four playing alongside James. But the only thing that allowed him to learn how to play with James was actually him.
For Kevin Love in Cleveland, playing with James meant not only figuring out where he had to be on the court – Love received six fewer pictures of a game in his first season with James – but also how to avoid the mass and social media tremors from it.
When James first partnered with Anthony Davis in Los Angeles, they sought to avoid these pitfalls by promising to try to stay on the same page. "What I see here is how much time they spend together away from the basketball court," said Lakers coach Frank Vogel. "And to be honest, even in movie sessions, in the locker room, it seems like the two are always together and just building this, this friendship. … I think LeBron just did his best to make sure he was is going out of their way to make sure Anthony is comfortable with his new team. "
The two tried to keep expectations low for their success early in the season because of past issues James had merged with Bosh and Love. But James and Davis play fabulously together. Although you see them try and develop their preferences, the union has exceeded even optimistic hopes at the beginning of the process.
"I didn't think we would be able to connect so quickly just because of the fact that he had a lot of things with Space Jam  "so we didn't have much time to work together," Davis said. "Then we hit a short training camp and had to leave for China, and all that stuff, so I'm surprised we have a little connection right now."
That's what surprised Bosch. James, Bosch and Dwyane Wade have played with each other in Team USA for several summers and in numerous All-Star games, but that does not guarantee a smooth start together in Miami. This group started their first season together at 9-8 and didn't really find a beat until the second season.
The Lakers are 8-2 and are among the best defensive teams in the league, with James picking up a triple-double.
"The US team and the All-Star Games are catalysts for chemistry, but it's not real life," Bosch said. "You go in with some unknown unknowns and you hope to find a rhythm by maybe Christmas and then get better from there."
In his first nine games, James helped Davis to 26 baskets, 10 more than any other teammate, on ESPN Statistics and Information Research. Compare that to his first nine games with Bosh when he was 17 assists, and his first nine with Love, who produced only 11. Their picks led to the outstanding dives that fans love and a schematic nightmare for opposing coaches, and though sometimes caught slightly out of position, easy to see natural flow.
"I think that's part of the genius of [LeBron’s] that he can overcome whatever it takes to bring out the best of the rest of the players," said Heat coach Eric Spoelstra, whose team stands up against the Lakers last week. "His connection to [Bosh] was pretty natural and I think it is, it just fits in like a glove … When both guys want to do it, engage in the process of improving it, you just keep going to see this will improve dramatically over the course of the season. "
The scenarios are different, of course. In Miami and Cleveland, when James joined the superstars, they formed a big threesome, not a big two, as it is now – there were more mouths to feed and ego for the eye. Plus, James is a different player at this stage of his career, in part because he is the Lakers' main quarterback.
He is focused on getting the ball into Davis and getting into a rhythm. In the first game of the season, James forced the ball over to Davis so much that he forgot about his own game and Davis ended up with 17 consecutive games, easily the most for every game of his career.
Last week, Davis was named player of the Western Conference of the Week – no surprise for the megastar who won it six times before. But think about it: Since James won his first of 63 Player of the Week awards in 2004, only five teammates have won one by themselves.
Love won her once every four years with James, in his third season in Cleveland, powered by a game against the Portland Trail Blazers, in which he had 34 first quarter points. Kiri Irving won it twice in three seasons with James. Davis did it in Week 2.
"I think it's getting better and better over the days, as with any relationship," James said. "The connection on the court, the connection on the floor. The more and more time you spend together, if the boys have the same goals in mind, you have the same aspiration, then it happens organically."
It was once unthinkable that James' teammate would be an MVP candidate. Only a few times do players win the award with a former MVP as a teammate, usually as a senior partner is about to leave the league.
James won the MVP Award in 2010 in Cleveland with Shaquille O'Neill near retirement, Tim Duncan has won along with David Robinson in the last two years of the Admiral's career. Larry Bird won with former winner Bill Walton, playing 19 minutes off the bench. Magic Johnson earned two MVP points with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, one when Kareem was 39 and the other when he was 41 last season.
Even if Davis is not the MVP favorite at this point, just that in the conversation shows astonishing success – that is, James derives the highest level of play from the younger star.
"I'm trying to make a lot more than an MVP, man," Davis said, losing the idea. "It's obviously the start of the season; if the MVP is coming, it's coming. If the quarterback of the year comes, it's coming. But the main goal of the whole team is to win the championship, and we're just trying to stay in the moment."
James jokes that he and Davis aren't quite peanut butter and jelly yet – James uses the sandwich metaphor to describe his relationship with Wade when they re-joined Cleveland in 2017, remarriage ended badly and quickly – but more like peanut butter and banana.
The Lakers have had a favorable schedule so far, raising their record, but despite the wins and losses, the partnership shows enough promise that the Lakers seem to be expanding the horizons for the season. And there must be more.
"We spent hours and hours, days and days with late-night meetings and tension and fun, the whole gamut," Bosch says he learned to play with James. "He and AD are going to fight, but it takes this fight to find out who they are. You want some of that. They want it to work, you can see this is how it will happen."
ESPN Eric's Eric contributed to this report.