LeBron James has been awarded the Male Athlete of the Decade by The Associated Press. Bron enjoyed a terrific 10 years where he played with three teams in the association, racking up plenty of accolades and showing everybody his dominance over the rest of the league.
James is The Associated Press male athlete of the decade, adding his name to a list that includes Tiger Woods, Wayne Gretzky and Arnold Palmer. He was a runaway winner in a vote of AP member sports editors and AP beat writers, easily outpacing runner-up Tom Brady of the New England Patriots.
“You add another 10 years of learning and adversity, pitfalls, good, great, bad, and any smart person who wants to grow will learn from all those experiences,” James, who turns 35 Monday, told the AP. “A decade ago, I just turned 25. I’m about to be 35 and I’m just in a better (place) in my life and have a better understanding of what I want to get out of life.”
This decade started with James joining the Miami Heat to create a big three with Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade. He went to four straight NBA Finals with them, winning two of them against the Oklahoma City Thunder and the San Antonio Spurs.
He also lost the other two in the rematch against the Spurs and getting upset by Dirk Nowitzki and the Dallas Maverick in 2011.
After that, he returned to the Cleveland Cavaliers to take the team to the promised land in 2016 after a dramatic 3-1 Finals comeback over the Golden State Warriors.
James is turning 35 today and is still ballin like he’s the same guy who made his debut 17 years ago. Lakers' head coach Frank Vogel explained why James is still able to be so effective at his age.
“I just think that first and foremost you have to be able to control the game from the mental aspect first. He was always able to do that as a young player, and particularly in his prime, but I think that’s boding well for him later in his career,” Vogel said before the Lakers’ game against the Dallas Mavericks on Sunday.
“Also the round-the-clock attention that he gives to his body just to make sure that he’s doing everything the right way to put his body in the best position to have success.”
Bron has been great throughout his entire career, so it’s not a shock if we see him getting honored with this. It’ll be interesting how things go for him this next decade. Seeing the way things have gone so far, perhaps it’s not crazy to think he’ll be awarded the same recognition in 10 years from now.