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The Cleveland Cavaliers picked him in the 2003 NBA Draft with the first pick in the draft, not only for his athletics ability but for the revenue he could bring to the team and city. James did not play college basketball, and entered the NBA Draft immediately after high school. He went to high school in Akron, Ohio.
James played with the Cavaliers for his first seven seasons. During that time, he was one of the NBA's top scorers. He was selected as an All-Star several times. In 2007, he led Cleveland to the NBA Finals. He was the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the NBA for the 2008-09 NBA season and 2009-10 NBA season. In his MVP years, Cleveland had the best record in the NBA, but did not make it to the NBA Finals.
On July 8, 2010, on a show in ESPN called "The Decision" LeBron said that he would next play for the Miami Heat. On December 2, 2010, James played in Cleveland for the first time since leaving, scoring 38 points for the Heat as they beat the Cavaliers, 118-90. Many fans angry at James for leaving Cleveland booed him throughout the game and held up signs with negative statements against James.
In the 2011 season the Miami Heat came in second place right behind the Chicago Bulls lead by Derrick Rose in the NBA. They made it to the finals of the NBA and lost in six games to the Dallas Mavericks  This caused celebration in Cleveland because they hated Lebron for what he did to them.
In the 2012 Finals, LeBron James won his first championship after the Miami Heat defeated the Oklahoma City Thunder 4-1 games, after battling with the Boston Celtics 4-3 games the previous round. The next year, LeBron James won his second title when the Heat defeated the San Antonio Spurs in seven games. In both years he won the MVP title of finals and of regular season.
In 2014, James competed a very good regular season but he wasn't the MVP. In the 2014 Finals, the Heat's Finals streak ended after being defeated by the San Antonio Spurs in five games (4-1). Shortly after those Finals had ended, LeBron James said he would use an early termination option in his contract, leaving the Miami Heat and becoming a free agent. He said this on June 24, 2014.
Then, on June 25, 2014, in a first-person essay in Sports Illustrated, he said he would return to the Cleveland Cavaliers. On July 12, 2014, James signed a two-year, $42.1 million contract to return to the Cavaliers. The deal also contains an option to become a free agent again after the 2014–15 NBA season. Lebron now plays on the Los Angeles Lakers.
In 2015, he took the Cleveland Cavaliers to the NBA Finals, without Kevin Love but lost to the Golden State Warriors in 6 games after losing Kyrie Irving after he had an ankle injury. The following year he again took the Cavs to the finals against the Warriors and made history when he led the Cleveland Cavaliers to an NBA championship after being down 3-1 games. No team had ever come back from a 3-1 deficit in the Finals before then. He had a historic moment where he blocked Andre Iguodala on possibly the game winning layup. The Cavaliers went on to lose to the Golden State Warriors the following season. Now with the lakers he passed Kobe.
On August 18, 2022, James re-signed with the Los Angeles Lakers on a two-year, $97.1M deal. The contract extension made James the highest-paid athlete in NBA history at $528.9M, surpassing Kevin Durant in all-time earnings.
- "LeBron James". http://www.nndb.com/people/524/000023455/. Retrieved 8 October 2016.
- Berman, Marc (9 July 2010). "LeBron James will play for Heat". https://nypost.com/2010/07/09/lebron-james-will-play-for-heat/. Retrieved 8 October 2016.
- Feed, AP. "LeBron James shines in return to Cleveland as Heat crush Cavaliers". http://msn.foxsports.com/nba/story/LeBron-James-shines-in-return-to-Cleveland-as-Miami-Heat-crush-Cavaliers-120210. Retrieved 8 October 2016.
- "Mavericks vs. Heat - Game Recap - June 12, 2011 - ESPN". http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/recap?gameId=310612014. Retrieved 8 October 2016.
- "Cleveland fans celebrate LeBron losing". 13 June 2011. http://www.espn.com/nba/playoffs/2011/news/story?id=6657944. Retrieved 8 October 2016.
- "Spurs 104-87 Heat: San Antonio beat Miami to win the NBA title". 16 June 2014. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/othersports/article-2658741/Spurs-104-87-Heat-San-Antonio-beat-Miami-Game-five-win-NBA-championship.html. Retrieved 8 October 2016.
- "LeBron James will opt out, become free agent". http://www.cbssports.com/nba/eye-on-basketball/24596002/report-lebron-james-will-opt-out-become-free-agent. Retrieved 8 October 2016.
- "Cavs Sign Free Agent Forward LeBron James". Cleveland Cavaliers. http://www.nba.com/cavaliers/releases/cavaliers-sign-free-agent-forward-lebron-james. Retrieved 2014-11-08.
- "Lakers Sign LeBron James to Contract Extension" (in en). https://www.nba.com/lakers/news/lakers-sign-lebron-james-to-contract-extension-220818.
- "LeBron lands 2-year, $97.1M deal with Lakers" (in en). 2022-08-17. https://magazinebulletin.com/lakers-lebron-james-earns-127-million-as-the-years-highest-paid-athlete/.
- Winters, Mike. "Already a billionaire, LeBron James' 2-year contract extension makes him the NBA's all-time highest-paid player" (in en). https://www.cnbc.com/2022/08/18/lebron-james-becomes-highest-paid-player-in-nba-history.html.