LeBron James is coming home to Ohio. Even though Cavaliers fans burned his jersey after he departed in 2010 and Cav’s owner called the Akron-native’s move to the Miami Heat a “cowardly betrayal,” James announced Friday, July 11th, that he will be joining the NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers next year.
James told the world his next workplace via a bylined article on SI.com. The article specified there would be no press conference or detailed statement.
LeBron James returns to the Cavaliers
Most basketball fans already know LeBron James grew up around 40 miles from Cleveland in Akron, and spent his first seven seasons with the Cavaliers. James was adulated in Cleveland and took the Cavaliers to the NBA Finals in 2007 as well as two 60-win seasons, and then Cav’s stabbed fans in their collective hearts by signing with Miami.
Basketball pundits point out that James’s return to Cleveland, where he will play with All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving and 2014 No. 1 NBA draft pick Canadian Andrew Wiggins, instantly turns the perennially disappointing Cavaliers into legit title contenders after four consecutive losing seasons.
Just last month, the Cavs hired David Blatt as their new coach after firing Mike Brown for a second time. Blatt, a Boston native who played basketball Princeton, is head coaching an NBA team for the first time after significant coaching stints in Israel, Greece, Russia and Turkey.
Four years of success in Miami
While playing for Miami in 2010-2014, LeBron James led the Heat to four consecutive NBA Finals appearances and earned two NBA championships. James became a free agent last month, when he opted out of the final two years of his contract with the Heat.
The departure of the King from Miami leaves the Heat in rebuilding mode. Following the Heat’s defeat at hands of the San Antonio Spurs in the 2014 NBA Finals, James, Chris Bosh and Dwayne Wade all chose to become free agents. The other members of Miami’s “Big Three” have not announced their intentions for next year.