Saturday, July 12, 2014
Welcome Back LeBron James
Welcome back, LeBron James! Cleveland is happy to have you return home. I am too. I am one of the few people who was happy for you when you went to Miami. Why? Because you had given seven years of your life playing basketball for the Cleveland Cavaliers. With the decisions the owner and managers were making for the team there was not a championship win in sight here in Cleveland.
You needed to stretch your wings and experience another team with a different approach to basketball and winning. I encouraged your move to Miami and I was excited for you. You knew you were capable of winning an NBA championship and you went for it. I knew you would learn a lot about basketball and winning, but most importantly you would learn about life and about yourself. And, I was right.
Every person needs to leave home to grow and mature and see life from a different perspective. You have achieved all that by going to Miami. I am proud that you know your roots and who you are and did not get whooshed up in the Miami night life. Your time in Miami helped to mold you into the fine person you are today. You should be proud of yourself.
You heartfelt essay in Sports Illustrated proves my point. I believe your essay to be sincere and genuine. I think you do miss northeast Ohio and I think you do want to be a role model who is loyal to his hometown and area fans. Your essay is a classy touch on the whole decision.
When others bemoaned your leaving Cleveland, I reminded them you returned each summer to work for your charities and do your bike-a-thon, in which you gave a bicycle to each young boy or girl who took part in your bike-a-thon. Many here were quick to ignore or forget that you returned here each summer and did your bit for charities.
The fact that you kept your house here in Bath, Ohio signaled to me you would one day return to northeast Ohio. I am glad it was sooner rather than later.
While in Miami, I am glad you did not get caught up in the superficial lifestyle that so many live there. You have always been a fine role model for young children to look up to. And, I know your own family is important to you and was important in your final decision.
I realize your time in Miami has helped to define you as a person and as a basketball player and was a good experience for you. I think you also realize that talent alone does not define the man. There are so many aspects of your personality and life experiences that make the man.
I hope you can come to Cleveland and win a NBA championship. You realize that is not an easy feat and are so realistic this time around. It takes hard work and teamwork to win a championship and it does not happen overnight.
As you said, nothing is given, all is earned. Welcome home!