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LeBron may have chosen Miami to recreate high school. But he has no regrets.

Aug 17, 2010, 11:19 AM EDT

Thumbnail image for lebron_james_arty.jpgRegrets? Nope.

LeBron James is chronicled in the latest issue of GQ, by author J.R. Moehringer, who had the seats closest to ringside for the circus that was the Summer of LeBron. He has a lot of insights, he tries to answer the hardest questions.

Like, what would LeBron change if he had it to do over?

“Nothing at all,” he said.

Like “Why Miami?”

Moehringer thinks because playing with Wade and Bosh in a fun city is a way to replicate James’ high school experience, which he still says is some of the best times of his life. Moehringer gets into this more in a companion interview done at TrueHoop.

I agree with Buzz [Bissinger, who wrote James' last authorized book] that’s it’s dangerous to do pop psychologizing, but it seems to me that [James] has one formula for success in his life and that comes out of his high school experience…

He thrives, he’s happiest, he does his best when he is surrounded by friends. He just didn’t feel like that was happening in Cleveland. It seems pretty clear that Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh aren’t just the best talent he can surround himself with, but they’re a combination of talent and friends. He’s looking for camaraderie. That’s the formula that has worked for him — and the only one that has worked for him.

Moehringer paints a complex portrait (which is not fully available online, you need to buy the magazine). He talks about a man somewhat isolated from reality — a man surrounded by a layer of family, followed by a layer of friends, followed by a layer of Nike people. Moehringer said that in the room in Connecticut, where LeBron was to televise his decision, everyone had a sense of foreboding and that this was a bad idea — everyone except LeBron and his people. They didn’t get it.

How isolated did he seem from reality at times? The opening of the article says it all:

He can imagine, he says, playing for Cleveland again one day.

Did I hear him right? Cleveland?

“If there was an opportunity for me to return,” he says, “and those fans welcome me back, that’d be a great story.”

Cleveland…Ohio? Where fans at this very moment are burning his jerseys? Where fans are selling toilet paper made from his jerseys?

“Maybe the ones burning my jersey,” he says, “were never LeBron fans anyway.”

This is a fantastic bit of writing, and like all great writing it ads nuance and shades of gray to what has been painted in black-and-white terms so many places. LeBron does not come off as a bad person or a stooge, he comes off as someone who thought it through and made his decision. Someone very comfortable with that decision.

He says that Cavs owner Dan Gilbert’s post-decision rant only reinforced the feeling he made the right decision, as James himself said in GQ:

“I don’t think he ever cared about LeBron. My mother always told me: ‘You will see the light of people when they hit adversity. You’ll get a good sense of their character.’ Me and my family have seen the character of that man.” He went on to say that Gilbert’s post-Decision screed “made me feel more comfortable that I made the right decision.”

Moehringer doesn’t let we sports fans off the hook. We are to blame in part for this. Complain about ESPN’s “The Decision” all you want, large numbers tuned in to watch. As he gets into during his TrueHoop interview, Moehringer notes we complain about athletes acting narcissistically, then we tune in to watch them in big numbers. We are fascinated. We do it with Brett Favre. We do it with Tiger.

And when the ratings numbers start up again on Oct. 26, you can bet we will see record numbers tune in to watch LeBron again.  

  1. dwade - Aug 17, 2010 at 7:40 PM

    I dont like the bitch.

  2. Anonymous - Aug 17, 2010 at 7:55 PM

    screw you dickwad from miami why dont you suck lebrons black dick faggit

  3. Polo - Aug 17, 2010 at 8:02 PM

    Damn, you cleveland fans are a bunch of jealous bitches. stop crying over Lebron. Jesus the whole city of Cleveland is pathetic. and a city fool of loosers. Just ask your stupid self. which bonafide basketball superstar you guys ever had? Do not give me the graig Helo,Brad D or Marc price. They were very good players not superstars. You tuned in to watch “The decision”, Had Lebron chose to remain a Cavs, there would have been no complain with the process as long James remain a Cavs. All of you that are saying without the Decision circus you would have accepted Lebron James
    move to miami and move on are all lying through your teeth. When the best thing that ever happened to you leaves you; you do not react by saying have a wonderfull life. you gonna get nasty, abusive even damn repulsive and that’s you cleveland fans. Should I say the word therapy once again!

  4. Club - Aug 17, 2010 at 8:19 PM

    By November 1 Lebron will be still the King. Amazing how sports media thinks because what they feel and write is how most people feel. Not even close. Maybe where you come from people hate Lebro, but in my neck of the woods he did what he was entitled to do. I live in LA and Lebron is still Lebron here. He was here a few weeks back and no hateful people anywhere. He made a decision as a 25year old Millionare had the right to do. He did it his way at 25 and shouldn’t hasn’t looked back. That’s probably the reason for the hatred. Oh by the way when a person does something HIS WAY and does not go with the grain, that person is basically telling you he does not care how you feel about it what he just did….And oh another by the way come November 1st when the season starts, the same sports media and fans that hate him will want fron row tickets to see him play.
    Go get em Lebron.

  5. Anonymous - Aug 17, 2010 at 8:23 PM

    awesome

  6. dan - Aug 17, 2010 at 9:13 PM

    You really this stupid, or is the best part of you still running down your fathers leg?
    You moron, nobody has a problem with him leaving Cleveland. That was his right.
    ITS HOW HE DID IT.
    What a stupid mother fkr.

  7. partypimp - Aug 17, 2010 at 9:50 PM

    LeBron James lives his life devoid of reality.
    He could have gone LEGEND if he had stayed in Cleveland.
    Jordan, Magic, Bird, & Barkley …. nobody took his back.
    Barkley even called him a “punk” and told him “he knows where to find me”.
    See LeBron now wants to justify his departure by continuing to take shots at Cleveland… fine… go ahead. You already ripped our hearts out on national tv. While not pile on.
    Trust me, anything short of a full blown apology, LeBron James will never play another game in a Cavs uniform no matter what.
    HOW CAN HE BE SO STUPID ?
    I really thought the guy got it.
    I think he must be making these decisions on his own as no adviser in the world with a shred of knowledge would have him make these calls.
    I do NOT wish this man ill will.
    I believe in Karma.
    It’s not that he left Cleveland, it’s the way that he left.
    He’s knew all to well about the “The’s” in Cleveland.
    The Drive
    TheFumble
    The Shot
    He named it “The Decision” to get his way into Cleveland lore.
    Like I’ve said.
    Wait till the players collective bargaining agreement with the players expires next year and the owners get to throw in the players faces that James and Bosh walked away on MAX money to play together.
    “obviously we are paying you way too much if they were willing to let millions on the table”.
    The players are going to be SMOKING HOT at the 3 stooges.
    What would you say to an owner group?
    What could you say?
    This move just cost the players ANY leverage they had with the owners to get more money and public perception now is
    the owners are right… the players are overpaid after this stunt.
    Just remember LeBron James … we in Cleveland NEEDED you…. Miami will just use you.
    It’s a shame you probably either don’t get it or don’t care.
    Your just a kid from Akron who couldn’t make it in the BIG CITY… so you ran away and blame the city.
    Barkley hit the nail on the head.
    PUNK.
    Keep taking shots, your only digging your hole deeper.
    Now go put on your wedding dress for the season opener Mrs. Wade.

  8. Anonymous - Aug 17, 2010 at 10:32 PM

    King James has become Queen James. He bought Riley’s old house and moved in with King Wade and jester Bosch.
    Hopefully his Mommy moves in to so she can wipe his ?

  9. saveahoe11 - Aug 18, 2010 at 3:13 AM

    Calling someone a “hater” is the true mark of an ignorant and childish individual. By doing this you basically are saying I can’t articulate an argument or fact for why I belive what I do, so Im just going to call you a “hater.” Calling someone a “hater” shows a person lacks the ability to string together coherent and original thought….

  10. Anonymous - Aug 18, 2010 at 7:15 AM

    GET OF THIS SITE YOU FLAMING FAGGIT!!!!!!!!! GO SCREW YOUR MOMMA

  11. so_what - Aug 18, 2010 at 10:18 AM

    Cleveland fans did have a problem with him along with how he did it. When are you people going to get over it. Cleveland Cavs, Browns, Indians, Gladitors, Crumb Lickers and any other team in Cleveland will always be losers. I have to agree POLO, he said it best – Cleveland is pathetic; and a city full of loosers!!!!!

  12. saveahoe11 - Aug 18, 2010 at 11:21 AM

    Really tough replying annonymous loser. learn how to put together a sentence that isn’t filled with bigotry and childish remarks

  13. Jimee Johnnson - Aug 18, 2010 at 1:20 PM

    I’ve defended LeBron up until now. Him thinking he will EVER return to the Cavaliers is just plain ridiculous. He ain’t ever going back to Cleveland. Maybe Akron, but not Cleveland, where he will be public enemy #1 for a long, long time. I believe Lebron set himself up for all this estrangement by always pointing out how great it was for him to play in his home area. LeBron should talk less and win more. Look what happened to Sir Charles Barkley: big mouths don’t win championships. Ask Sir Charles: he knows!

  14. uralgay - Aug 18, 2010 at 10:04 PM

    who would want to go to cleveland in the first place. its the a**hole of america. i dont understand everyones blind hatred for athletes who they dont even know personally. no one complains when some joe nobody quits his job and goes to work for a company that is a more flourishing business. why are you all so invested in what these athletes do. im sure you are all just jealous that your athletic ability peaked when you were 16 and now your fat and broke. lebron wade and bosh are gonna kill it in miami. im not even a heat fan. i just think that its sickening that lames like yourselves sit online and bash athletes who have achieved more than any of you could ever hope to in your lifetime. once again… get lives f***heads.

  15. hahaha - Aug 18, 2010 at 10:14 PM

    do you just copy n paste the same thing on all of these articles. obviously you cant come up with more than one “original” thought. so for the haters… thank you haters. you waste your time being upset… while the rest of us just make money and laugh.

  16. Anonymous - Sep 8, 2010 at 12:13 PM

    you sound sorry and pathetic. LeBron is a grown as man who has to market himself.. the “King” thing was perfect… for the time being. Now he’s taking his talents down to Miami and thats fine. When they mesh, when they exceed expectation, when they win… everyone will be right back to riding his nuts ever so gloriously.

  17. anonymous - Sep 14, 2010 at 11:58 PM

    The only thing I care about is the bomb that will drop right before the start of the season that will rock the NBA. Hint: Game 5 vs Boston, Las Vegas, and a grimey little runner called D-Bowe, Dan Gilbert told all of you this was not over he has proof that will rock the league and Stern will make Doneghy look like PeeWee Herman. Mark my words, stern knew about what went down and was in on it and not even Jesse Jackson can help him out of this one.

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