ABC News’ Sarah Tobianski reports:
Cleveland Cavaliers’ LeBron James is yet another championship away from being one of the game’s greats but, hey, if you’re still itching for that thrown-down between LeBron and Kobe, LeBron seems to have had the upper-hand this round: the first post-season visit to the White House.
White House aides say LeBron stopped by for a quick tour and said hello to the president yesterday in between Obama’s trip to Chicago to address the American Medical Association and his meeting with Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi.
Getting advice on how to improve the Cavs’ game plan for next season from hoops fanatic Obama, perhaps? After all, last season did end Sunday night and the town has a 45-year sports championship drought.
If history is any indication, most NBA champions don’t make their celebratory visit to the Rose Garden until the fall or winter. Unless, of course, you are the president’s hometown team, the Chicago Bulls, who stopped by after playing the Washington Wizards earlier this year. The Cavs are one of 15 teams without an NBA title or a presidential invitation.
For these two, the respect is already mutual. James did what he could to rack up support for Obama in the days leading up to last year’s election, rallying with fellow celebrities in the swing state of Ohio.
Obama once compared his fast rise to prominence to LeBron’s. “I'm LeBron, baby,” Obama told Chicago Tribune’s David Mendell at the 2004 Democratic National Convention. “I can play on this level. I got some game.” Mendell was so taken by the comparison, he included it in the opening of the biography he wrote on Obama.
James was also in town to attend a screening of “More Than a Game,” a documentary about his St. Vincent-St. Mary High School basketball team’s road to the national championships.
– Sarah Tobianski