LeBron James has surely fielded a number of calls and texts of congratulations over the past 18 or so hours as he picked up his fourth NBA title and fourth Finals MVP award of his career on Sunday night.
Unlike most years, where James could have all of his family and friends nearby during the Finals, he just had his teammates and wife, Savannah, with him in Orlando to celebrate. As such he had an emotional video call with his mother, Gloria, from the floor of the Lakers locker room and L.A.’s team celebration was joyous, even if a bit muted and much smaller than it typically would be.
Among those to reach out offering praise for his play in the Finals, in which he was once again an utterly dominant force and averaged nearly a triple-double over the six-game series, was former president Barack Obama. James made three trips to the Obama White House for NBA title celebrations and the two became fairly close, with Obama even offering James and other players some counsel during their brief work stoppage earlier in the Bubble amid continued calls for social and racial justice. Obama sent out a tweet on Monday afternoon congratulating his friend on another title, but also wanted to highlight how he’s become an “extraordinary leader” on and off the court for the Lakers, the entire NBA, and all those that look up to him.
Proud of my friend @KingJames for his fourth title, fourth Finals MVP, and for not only living up to the hype after seventeen seasons, but surpassing it as an extraordinary leader both on the court and in the public arena fighting for education, social justice, and our democracy. pic.twitter.com/2IB3ZDI4Nf
— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) October 12, 2020
LeBron exists in a stratosphere of fame that few have ever been in or understood, but it still has to be fairly cool to be able to call the former president a friend and have him send out messages such as this after you win a title.