In an interview with CNN LeBron James said that race played a factor in the hate he’s received for leaving Cleveland.

“I think so at times,” LeBron answered when asked by Soledad O’Brien if race played a role in the backlash. This is somewhat of a departure from James, and younger athletes like him, steering clear of racial issues on or off the court.

After playing for seven years in Cleveland LeBron signed a six-year deal with the Miami Heat in hopes of winning a championship with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. James made his announcement on a televised broadcast called “The Decision” with all of the on-air proceeds going to the Boys And Girls Club Of America.  His former team was notified that he was leaving only minutes before the broadcast. The owner of the Cleveland Cavaliers released a statement on the teams website declaring James “a coward” and fans burned his jersey in anger.

Watch the interview with Soledad O’Brien below.


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