Watch: Bow Down to the King! LeBron James Named AP Male Athlete of 2016

LeBron James

Watch: Bow Down to the King! LeBron James Named AP Male Athlete of 2016

Leading the Cavs from a 3-1 deficit to an NBA Finals victory helped him clinch the honors.

Published December 27, 2016

It's time for everyone to bow down to the King!

LeBron James was named the 2016 Associated Press Male Athlete of the Year on Tuesday, six months removed from leading the Cleveland Cavaliers to an NBA championship victory in dramatic fashion.

King James averaged a near triple-double (29.7 points, 11.3 rebounds and 8.9 assists per game) to be named the NBA Finals MVP in a series which saw the Cavs become the first team in league history to successfully rally from a 3-1 deficit to win the championship. 

In doing so, LeBron left NBA fans with the lasting image of himself blocking Golden State Warriors forward Andre Iguodala out of nowhere during the waning minutes of Game 7.

With the improbable win, James's Cavs ended Cleveland's 52-year drought without a major sports title, as the city was shut down via 1.3 million-plus fans flooding the streets during a turnt championship parade three days later. Adding to the glory was the fact that James and his Cavs defeated a Warriors' squad that had pulled off an NBA-best 73-9 record, touting back-to-back league MVP Stephen Curry.

LeBron garnered 24 of the 59 first-place votes from newspaper editors to earn the AP's honor, edging Olympic heroes Michael Phelps (16 votes) and Usain Bolt (nine votes).

This marks the second time that King James has been named the AP's Male Athlete of the Year, as he also won the honor in 2013 after leading the Miami Heat to an NBA championship. The only other NBA player to win the AP's prestigious honor was Michael Jordan, who was named Male Athlete of the Year from 1991-94.

Earlier this month, King James was named Sports Illustrated's 2016 Sportsperson of the Year.

LeBron being named Male Athlete of the Year follows Simone Biles earning the AP's Female Athlete of 2016 on Monday.

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Written by Mark Lelinwalla

(Photo: Jason Miller/Getty Images)


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