James on Sunday said he felt better in his three games back from injury than he had all season. After missing eight games to rest a sore back and a sore left knee, James made 34 of 65 shots (52.3 percent) with 33.7 points and 7.7 rebounds per game against the Phoenix Suns, Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers last week.
The Cavs (21-20) finished the trip with back-to-back wins, which James hopes catalyzes his oft-injured squad. Cleveland went 1-7 without James.
"I know, for me personally, [the two-week layoff] helped me out a lot," said James, whose Cavs play the Bulls on Monday at 7:30 p.m. ET. "I've felt better in the last three games than I did the whole season, the whole 30-plus games that I appeared in. We've had a 2-1 record since I've been back, so hopefully we can continue on that path."
James' three-game stretch was "outstanding" from a performance standpoint, coach David Blatt said. James also made 10 of 26 3s on the trip.
For the season, James' 49.2 shooting percentage is his lowest since the 2008-09 season and his 26.0 points per game his lowest since his rookie year in 2003-04. He is averaging 5.5 rebounds per game, nearly 2 less than his career average of 7.2, though his assists average is up to 7.4 per game.
In late December, the Cavs lost center Anderson Varejao for the season to a torn Achilles. Guard Iman Shumpert, a recent acquisition via trade, is nursing a shoulder injury, and forward Kevin Love missed Friday's 126-121 win over the Clippers with a back injury.
Love practiced Sunday and is officially questionable for the Bulls game.
"We're starting to pick it up and guys are starting to get healthy, so I'm looking forward to seeing what we can become up until the All-Star break and even more than that," James said.
Blatt called the road trip a successful one despite the win total because "we made progress." James wouldn't go that far, saying "no, no" when asked about whether the trip was a success. But James admits he was excited about how the Cavs competed.
"It's a long season, and those two games don't make or break a season but they were confidence-builders," Blatt said.