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The Highs And Lows Of LeBron James' Return To Cleveland

Tribute? Deservedly so. Handshakes? No thanks
by John Paulo Aguilera | Nov 22, 2018
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LeBron James—now a Los Angeles Laker—came back to Cleveland on Thursday, and the experience turned out to be the exact opposite of his initial homecoming in 2010.

Unlike the hostile reception he received when he was with the Miami Heat, Cavaliers fans warmly embraced LeBron in his first return after departing the team for the second time as a free agent. He even said postgame, "I appreciated these fans just as much as they appreciated me." The outcome, however, was the same: James breaking the hearts of the familiar fanbase.

Despite the jubilant mood and competitive game, the King's arrival wasn't all roses:

HIGHS

Tribute

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During a timeout in the first quarter, the Cavs showed an emotional video of LeBron's massive influence on and off the court, from "The Block" to the I Promise School—only fitting for the hometown hero who ended the city's 52-year championship drought.

Kicks

Of course, James returned to Cleveland in style, and warming up in the Nike LeBron 16 "Jim Brown" and the Nike LeBron 8 PS, before lacing up the Nike LeBron Air Max 7 "More Than a Game." Thank god there was no shorts suit...

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W

At the end of the day, the King was moved but wasn't softened up by the shower of love. He finished with 32 points, 14 rebounds, seven assists, and a block, to lead the Lakers to a 99-91 comeback win—scored or assisted on 11 straight points in the 4th.

LOWS

Jerseys

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It's one thing to follow an NBA superstar to whichever team he joins, it's another to flaunt "bandwagon branded gear," as commented by one netizen. Not sure if they are fans or making fun of Lebron, but those "blended" unis look awful.

Handshakes

Speaking of bad looks, the sight of James doing a complicated dap routine with a former teammate and current opponent, Tristan Thompson, wasn't very amusing (Just ask Kyle Kuzma). League conspiracy theorists be like: LeBron coming home again in 2022?

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Skip Bayless

In the words of Stephen A. Smith, this tweet is "blasphemous!"

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