July 8th, 2010
09:27 PM ET

LeBron James to play for Miami Heat

NBA free agent LeBron James announced Thursday that he will play for the Miami Heat in one of the most anticipated free-agent announcements in sports history.

James said he made his final decision Thursday morning, after speaking with his mother.

"Once I had that conversation with her I think I was set," James told sportscaster Jim Gray.

The six-time NBA all-star and two-time league MVP said the chance to play alongside fellow stars Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh in Miami affected his decision.

Editorial cartoons, billboards and even quips from President Obama have accompanied the courting of "King James."

Speculation began to intensify last week over where the NBA's most sought-after free agent would choose to play after he started meeting with six teams vying for him: the New York Knicks, the New Jersey Nets, the Los Angeles Clippers, the Chicago Bulls, the Miami Heat and the Cleveland Cavaliers - the team he has spent his entire career with.

eatocracy: Dear LeBron, come for the hoops, stay for the grub

Rumors that the Miami Heat was the leading contender to grab James began to emerge this week, with Newsday's Alan Hahn tweeting the news after midnight Thursday.

In an interview in June with CNN's Larry King, James, 25, said Cleveland would have an "edge" if they tried to retain him after he became a free agent.

James has spent his entire seven-year career with the Cleveland Cavaliers, who drafted him out of high school in 2003.

"This city, these fans, I mean, have given me a lot in these last seven years... for me, it's comfortable," said James, who grew up in nearby Akron, Ohio. "I've got a lot of memories here. So it does have an edge."

But the six-time NBA all-star also said he's seeking an NBA title and wants to play with a team that can win more than one NBA championship. The Cavaliers were bounced from the second round of this year's playoffs by the Boston Celtics.

Post by:
Filed under: Sports
soundoff (186 Responses)
  1. balldontlie

    Hey Cleveland,

    HA-HA!

    July 8, 2010 at 9:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • mike

      4 SALE: Cleveland Season tickets. Cheap!! HA HA HA HA!!!!!!!!!!!! U lose Ohio!!!!!!!!

      July 8, 2010 at 9:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • John

      LeBron owed Cleveland nothing. He gave them much, much more than they ever gave him. He wants to win championships and its not going to happen in Cleveland. You can't blame him.

      July 8, 2010 at 9:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • Terrence

      ROFL!!! Cleveland is going to riot! Tear the Lebron posters and billboards down!!!! LOL!!!

      July 8, 2010 at 9:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Shawn Roberts

      Who gives a crap about this. There are research scientists making 1/20th of what this guy makes. Outrageous. I think its sick that in a county with a huge homeless population we can spend 100 million on an athlete. College sports for me please..

      July 8, 2010 at 9:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • rapdawg

      You have to understand that he has been loyal to Cleveland, 7 years. If he renews his contract with Cleveland it would be quite a while before he has this oppurtunity again. Give him a break, it's a chance and he took it. Cleveland can't expect him to stay with them forever, it was time.

      July 8, 2010 at 9:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • johnny orlando

      FL>OH

      July 8, 2010 at 9:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Icantstandrepublicans

      That was a very intelligent comment. Did it make you feel better?

      July 8, 2010 at 9:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Brian

      LeBron James announces that he will buy the Miami Heat, endorse the New York Knicks, marry two of the LA Clippers’ Spirit Dancers in a Utah ceremony in August, become Executive Vice President of Mining and Distribution for Polyus Gold (NJ Nets’ owner Mikhail Prokhorov’s gold empire) and play basketball part-time for the Cleveland Cavaliers.

      Read the FUNNY article here:

      http://www.dailygoat.com/2010/07/lebron-james-gives-thanks-god-signing-10-year-100m-endorsement-deal-heaven/

      July 8, 2010 at 9:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • luci

      Well thank you very much. I live in Cleveland and let me tell you we have more class then all of you people. No one said he couldn't better himself but the way he did it is wrong but of course your narrow minded couldn't see that now could you.

      July 8, 2010 at 10:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Big Ben

      Big Mistake! Who in the H_ LL will GET the BALL...LAKERS-IN-SIX!

      July 8, 2010 at 10:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • johnny orlando

      No one wants to visit cleveland, Florida is where the pretty girls are, Its going to be a hot night in Miami!!!!

      July 8, 2010 at 10:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • GUEST

      I DNT KNO WAT EVERY1 IS BOO HOO CRYIN ABOUT.....MIAMI GOT LEBRON ND CLEVELAND DIDN'T...PPL JST NEED 2 DEAL WIT IT ND MOVE ON

      BTW– LEBRON GAVE CLEVELAND 7 YEARS ND DID NOT GET WAT HE REALLY WANTED..A CHAMPIONSHIP

      July 9, 2010 at 10:02 pm | Report abuse |
  2. johnny orlando

    Florida is better than Ohio in every way other than being a boring crappy place, Bring on the heat!!!

    July 8, 2010 at 9:34 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Mike

    I hope they riot in Cleveland and burn this idiots house down. What a damn fool for turning his back on his hometown. What a JUDAS!!!!

    July 8, 2010 at 9:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Clint04

      These people have no loyalty, it's all about the money.

      July 8, 2010 at 9:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Terrence

      Now...now..Mike..LOL!!

      July 8, 2010 at 9:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • michael

      hey clint

      I could be wrong, but the last repor i heard was that Clevland was offering 120 mil...and Miami was at 90 mil

      July 8, 2010 at 9:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • dan

      If he stayed in Clevland he would have won exactly zero championships.

      July 8, 2010 at 9:57 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Frank

    Waste of my time!!

    July 8, 2010 at 9:35 pm | Report abuse |
  5. speolstra

    Zomg... nooooooooooooooo

    July 8, 2010 at 9:35 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Susan

    From Cleveland and crushed. I wish LeBron's mother would have taught him that to whom much is given, much is expected. He doesn't have to only make himself happy. A whole city needed him.

    July 8, 2010 at 9:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Guest

      If a city is reliant on a ego maniac who plays basketball then the people in the city should consider maybe prioritizing their lives. How sad that people are truly made happy or sad depending on this guy

      July 8, 2010 at 9:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Scott

      Hey he gave you 7 outstanding years! and who did you get him to help win a championship... SHAQ? come on he wants to win a championship and Cleveland didnt put that on the table. He is a class act give Lebron the respect he haas earned...on and off the court.

      July 8, 2010 at 9:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • McBride Ryan

      Thats a very selfish statement Susan. Hasn't anyone taught that you should give all you can and except nothing in return? Expecting something only leaves you disappointed, and feeling selfish in the end. Maybe if you'd of left him alone, he would have had a clear mind to decide.. I think you all pushed him away... a good mother always knows what to say and what not to say, and I can't imagine this clean cut man with success, has a bad mother..

      July 8, 2010 at 9:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • woweewow wow

      LeBron's mother has never been a great role model, Susan. Look at her history of alcohol abuse, drinking and driving, exploiting a child for monetary gain, etc.
      This is too bad. A lot of us defended LeBron when people elsewhere questioned his character and talked about his ego. We were wrong, they were right, he is no better than most of the other money-grubbing NBA thugs. For someone who talks so much about the importance of layalty, home and family, this is a shock. I just heard form a friend of a friend of a friend of a friend that Romeo Travis (his good friend and a minor Akron celebrity) took a swing at him the other day when LeBron told him the news. Too bad he didn't connect.

      July 8, 2010 at 9:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Steve

      Who can blame him for wanting to win a championship, something that Cleveland will never do with or without LeBron.

      July 8, 2010 at 9:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • rsk

      A whole city needed him? It's a stupid game. Grow up, there are real problems in the world.

      July 8, 2010 at 10:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rat

      @Guest – Populations have been inspired by sports for millennia. It is human nature.

      July 8, 2010 at 10:12 pm | Report abuse |
  7. WPI

    No chance for anyone else

    July 8, 2010 at 9:35 pm | Report abuse |
  8. KJO

    Lebron James is now worse than Art Modell as the most hated person in Cleveland history. Art Lied, but Lebron quit on us (game 5 Boston.)

    July 8, 2010 at 9:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • Susan

      Art Model was once booed out of a restaurant in Florida. I wish the same treatment for LeBron!

      July 8, 2010 at 9:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • woweewow wow

      LeBron quit, AND he was (was, as in past tense, and no more) one of us. What Modell did hurt... it hurt bad. But he was not a local hero who preached about loyalty. We still have the Cavs (for whatever that is worth), but this hurts worse.

      July 8, 2010 at 9:57 pm | Report abuse |
  9. howard stern

    who cares

    July 8, 2010 at 9:36 pm | Report abuse |
  10. samuel Mungo

    Who outside of South Beach is gonna root for that team? A match made in Wade's kitchen. They will not be able to deal with the pressure, and NOT win a championship. The biggest mistake in LeBron's career, mark my words!

    July 8, 2010 at 9:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • anarkissed

      Agreed!

      July 8, 2010 at 9:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Yep

      Agree! Watch egos collide once they don't win it all!!!

      July 8, 2010 at 9:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mark

      I hope you are 100000000000000% correct
      bunch of spoiled brats

      July 8, 2010 at 10:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • woweewow wow

      How can they NOT win multiple rings? That's the best player in the NBA, arguably the 3rd best player, and another possible top-10-15 player. They'll win a few, but who cares, they really should. LeBron's legacy will forever be that he needed another top superstar to lean on to win championships, unlike MJ (7?), Bill Russell (11, yes 11), and Kobe (5).

      July 8, 2010 at 10:17 pm | Report abuse |
  11. rON

    Oh that was not hard to guess once Wade and Bosh decided to sign for Miami and mentioned they may take a cut. Why else would they have done that if James was not on board. Oh well – hope they win now after all that drama.

    July 8, 2010 at 9:37 pm | Report abuse |
  12. weeping icon

    I'm speechless, what a freaking hypocrite. Maybe he'll wear a Cleveland Indians cap now

    July 8, 2010 at 9:38 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Frank

    I don't care you shouldn't either!!! Wow NEWS already predicted it!! What a waste of time!!

    July 8, 2010 at 9:38 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Phillip Butehorn

    What Lebron James now is

    1. No longer a King. Now a Prince
    2. No longer a leader. Now a follower
    3. No longer the captain of a team. Now Wade's Robin.

    July 8, 2010 at 9:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • JRS

      You are right on, now we know who wears the skirt !

      July 8, 2010 at 9:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Terrence

      Phillip Butehorn has a valid point. You better copy and paste this...I am!!!

      July 8, 2010 at 9:51 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Sammy

    What a bone head! Way to thank Cleveland for everything.

    July 8, 2010 at 9:38 pm | Report abuse |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9