LeBron James to Sign With Cleveland Cavaliers

LeBron James to Sign With Cleveland Cavaliers

NBA superstar takes his talents back to hometown team.

Published July 11, 2014

He’s coming back home.

LeBron James announced his return to the Cleveland Cavaliers on Friday, penning a first-person letter exclusively to Sports Illustrated.

"To make the move I needed the support of my wife and my mom, who can be very tough,” James wrote in the letter. “The letter from [Cavs owner Dan Gilbert], the booing of the Cleveland fans, the jerseys being burned — seeing all that was hard for them. My emotions were more mixed. It was easy to say, ‘OK, I don’t want to deal with these people ever again.’ But then you think about the other side. What if I were a kid who looked up to an athlete, and that athlete made me want to do better in my own life, and then he left? How would I react? I’ve met with Dan, face-to-face, man-to-man. We’ve talked it out. Everybody makes mistakes. I’ve made mistakes as well. Who am I to hold a grudge?"

He would add his desire to deliver a championship to the Cavaliers.

"I’m not promising a championship," he said. "I know how hard that is to deliver. We’re not ready right now. No way. Of course, I want to win next year, but I’m realistic. It will be a long process, much longer than it was in 2010. My patience will get tested. I know that. I’m going into a situation with a young team and a new coach. I will be the old head. But I get a thrill out of bringing a group together and helping them reach a place they didn’t know they could go. I see myself as a mentor now and I’m excited to lead some of these talented young guys."

He added: "But this is not about the roster or the organization. I feel my calling here goes above basketball. I have a responsibility to lead, in more ways than one, and I take that very seriously. My presence can make a difference in Miami, but I think it can mean more where I’m from. I want kids in Northeast Ohio, like the hundreds of Akron third-graders I sponsor through my foundation, to realize that there’s no better place to grow up. Maybe some of them will come home after college and start a family or open a business. That would make me smile."

Gilbert's response: "Welcome home King James."

Stay tuned for more on this developing story.

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(Photo: Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

Written by BET-Staff

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