During a conversation with Oprah Winfrey in 2012, LeBron James revealed his go-to strategy for dealing with the pressure before big games: reading.
“I was reading to not only do something different but to also take my mind off the game,” LeBron told Oprah. “Because during the postseason, everything is about the games. Everything is about the matchup and the team that you’re playing and the city that you’re in. I needed some moments where I could just get a different perspective—to escape.”
In that conversation, he mentioned Jay-Z’s Decoded, as well as Suzanne Collins’s dystopian thriller The Hunger Games and The Pact, a nonfiction book about three young men in Newark, New Jersey, who made an agreement to escape the turmoil of their hometown.