WARR contributor Josh Hicks offers his thoughts on the Chicago Bulls and the NBA
LeBron James has many fans, as well as haters, especially when it is playoff time.
I can see why, as I was once one of those followers that was not always on the James bandwagon. However, his multi-dimensional game must be respected and his greatness should be appreciated while he is still playing.
Since entering the league in 2003, the St. Vincent-St. Mary High School grad instantly became successful, bringing an excitement like no other with his incredible scoring and passing ability, signature chase down blocks, and various dunks made for posters.
During his early NBA journey, he averaged roughly 29 points a game and revived a declining franchise back into elite status. As great as he was at the time, he still had a lot of room to grow and improve.
Kings have their times of failure, and after frustration with continuous deep playoff failure, the young King left a chilly Cleveland for a warmer climate in Miami Beach, teaming up with his best friend Dwyane Wade to help create the NBA’s first super team.
James’s tenure in Miami was full of growth and maturity, what he would later call his “college years.” His success grew, going to the NBA Finals all four years, winning two championships and earning two of his four MVP awards, his overall game excelled to another level.
James found other ways to score, improved his court vision and IQ of the game, became more efficient with his shooting percentage inside and outside the paint and was more of a staple defensively, but he knew his “college years” were over and it was time to come home to take another stab in fulfilling his promise: bringing Cleveland’s first NBA championship.
In an emotional return, Bron indeed fulfilled that promise.
A special talent on the court, James even more impressive off the court, his humility along with his community efforts is the icing on the cake in regards to his humanitarianism. Donating millions of dollars for students to attend college, a new Muhammed Ali exhibit in museums, endorsing political candidates and winning the Sportsperson of the Year award are just a few of his numerous off the court projects and accomplishments.
James career stats currently average 27 points, seven points and seven rebounds, and he is showing no signs of slowing down his consistent production, he has shown that no matter what team he plays on, he has the leadership and professionalism to make his teammates better.
Numerous achievements fill up the back of James’s card — 2004 Rookie of the Year, 12 all-star appearances, six straight NBA Finals appearances (seven overall), three NBA championships and four MVP’s, and this year, he has become the only player to record 27,000 points, 7,000 rebounds and 7,000 assists in a career.
LeBron James is a rare breed that created his own elite class and has helped elevate the play of the NBA over the past 13 years, only more of the reason why we must appreciate his greatness as long as we can.
Joshua M. Hicks is a sports writer and broadcaster and a recent graduate of Roosevelt University, follow him on Twitter @jhicks042