Throughout his career, LeBron James’ sports fandom has been a frequent talking point with known allegiances to the Cowboys, Liverpool FC (a team he’s had an ownership stake in since 2011), Ohio State and his hometown Cleveland Guardians. An All-State receiver in high school, many suspect James could have played professionally, a career choice he seriously considered during the NBA lockout in 2011.
While James’ childhood fantasy of playing for the Cowboys never quite came to fruition, the Lakers veteran doesn’t seem the slightest bit fazed, admitting during a recent Q&A that he stopped rooting for Dallas a long time ago. James attributes that to remarks made by owner Jerry Jones, who issued an ultimatum to his players in 2017, giving them the choice to either stand for the national anthem or play on another team.
“Nah man, I had to [move on from] the Cowboys. Just a lot of things that were going on when guys were kneeling and wanting to [exercise] their freedom of speech in a peaceful manner,” said James during an Instagram Live session with longtime business manager Maverick Carter. “A lot of people in the front office and a lot of people that ran the organization were like, ‘If you do that around here, you’ll never play for this franchise again.’ I just didn’t think that was appropriate.”
Cognizant of the weight his words carry, James has frequently advocated for causes he cares about including Black Lives Matter, a social justice movement that Colin Kaepernick brought attention to when he began kneeling for the national anthem as a form of silent protest against systemic racism and police brutality.
“I like a lot of the players on the team still. I love CeeDee Lamb. Obviously, our boy Zeke. He’s a Buckeye, I still mess with him. I love Micah Parsons. He’s a dog. Trevon Diggs,” said James, who still respects many of the Cowboys’ players, even if he can’t bring himself to cheer for them on Sundays. “I had to turn it in even though I still got a lot of love [for their players]. I’m all in on the Browns.”
The Browns haven’t won a game since Week 3, which is still more recent than the Lakers’ last victory, with Los Angeles off to a dreadful 0-4 start under rookie coach Darvin Ham. That's James’ worst start to a season since 2003.
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