LeBron James reflects on his NBA debut vs. Kings with heartfelt message of gratitude

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Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

LeBron James took time on Friday to acknowledge the 18th anniversary of his NBA debut and indicated that he’s definitely not close to hanging up his legendary sneakers.

LeBron James

James, of course, was drafted by the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2003 as the top overall pick and had plenty of hype and anticipation attached to his pending career.

Making his debut on Oct. 29, 2003 against the Sacramento Kings, James gave just a hint of what his career would look like with 25 points, nine assists and four steals.

When Sean Elliott made his comments, he had some experience in trying to live up to high expectations, having been the third overall selection in the 1989 NBA Draft.

Elliott played 12 seasons in the NBA, spending 11 of them as a member of the San Antonio Spurs.

In his 19 NBA seasons, James has largely avoided any major injuries and has achieved the rare feat of leading three different franchises to NBA titles.

For Cavaliers fans, the most memorable of James’ four NBA titles was the 2016 championship in which he led the Cavs back from an imposing 3-1 deficit against the Golden State Warriors.

The 36-year-old James is now closer to the end of his career as he tries to help the Los Angeles Lakers capture their second championship in the past three seasons.

The Lakers will actually host the Cavaliers on the anniversary, though James’ status has him questionable for the contest.

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Brad Sullivan is a lead writer for Cavaliers Nation. He has spent much of life in the Cleveland, Ohio area, and has remained a Cavalier fan from their 1970 beginnings through the return of LeBron James. While that fandom was sorely tested during the Reign of Error known simply by one word, Stepien, that overall historical perspective will be part of his writing for Cavaliers Nation in the months ahead.