THE PROVIDENCE MAJOR IS NOW IN THE MIDDLE EAST
LeBron James was secretly introduced as the face of the Toronto Raptors to their fans. The NBA’s biggest draw was introduced as “King James” during a 15-minute ceremony yesterday at the Rogers Centre and introduced to a standing ovation.
Raptors officials presented James with Raptors jerseys including “King James” and signed pictures. The Cavs star said he had no hard feelings about the double billing. He also said he is learning his manners to fill the seats at the Rogers Centre. James may also have signed a contract with the team, though the Raptors will not comment on any contract negotiations.
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The president of the Raptors said the team has more national TV coverage this season than ever before.
The Raptors will play the Nets four times on the national TV networks, according to ESPN. That includes the 100th game at home against the Cavs on Christmas Day.
Raptors guard DeMar DeRozan was a pallbearer at James’s funeral. DeRozan used to cheer him. But he is now a member of the Cavaliers and he called his friend a “f—— legend.”
Sports Illustrated’s Ethan J. Skolnick reports that Cavaliers coach Tyronn Lue said James will come off the bench at Toronto and that he will start Game 2 on Sunday.
Tracy Wood, the president of USA Basketball, attended James’s funeral in Akron. The day before James and Wade attended team ceremonies that included 1.4-metre golden jerseys for the 2018 World Cup and 2016 Rio Olympics. On Friday, both James and Wade hosted a holiday party for underprivileged kids at Maverick Carter’s Nike headquarters in Oregon.