All hail King LeBron James! After leading the Cleveland Cavaliers to the team’s first NBA championship with an ‘epic’ performance, it’s no surprise that ‘Sports Illustrated’ named him their 2016 Sportsperson Of The Year. Congratulations!
“It’s hard to remember a year with such a crowded field of Sportsperson candidates,” Chris Stone, Sports Illustrated Editor in Chief, said when announcing the publication’s award on Dec. 1, per NBA.com. “But in the end LeBron James was the clear choice. It’s not just the way he took over the NBA Finals—though that performance was epic.”
While LeBron, 31, being awesome on the court and winning championships is nothing new, this past series against the Golden State Warriors earned him the honor because he won the title for his hometown. “It’s that LeBron was also carrying the weight of that promise he made when he returned to Cleveland in 2014,” Chris said. “It’s a special thing for a favorite son to follow through on that kind of commitment to his hometown. “
In addition to his efforts on the court, LeBron’s work in the community also helped him win Sportsperson Of The Year, as the magazine cited “his foundation does for underserved kids in Akron and with his increasing willingness to speak out in the fight for social justice.”
LeBron won SOTY in 2012, and is only the second two-time winner (the other is Tiger Woods, 40). This is also only the seventh time that the award has gone to a basketball player, with the most recent distinction going to LeBron’s former Miami Heat teammate, Dwyane Wade, 34, in 2006.
The honor is even more amazing considering the kind of year that sports has had. In Rio, Michael Phelps, 31, and Usain Bolt, 30, blew everyone away, making records and snatching gold medals (per Bleacher Report.) Not to mention, this is the year that the Chicago Cubs broke a century-long curse to finally win the World Series.
There’s also Ibtihaj Muhammad, 30, the first American athlete to compete in the Olympic Games while wearing a hijab (who brought home the bronze medal for the USA.) Overall, it was King James — who always kept Cleveland in his heart – that won the honor
Congratulations to LeBron! HollywoodLifers, what do you think? Do you think LeBron deserves Sportsperson Of The Year?