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LeBron James Reveals Experience Of Playing Pickup Basketball With Michael Jordan In 2001: "If You Pinched Me, I Would Hope I Don't Wake Up."

LeBron James Reveals Experience Of Playing Pickup Basketball With Michael Jordan In 2001: "If You Pinched Me, I Would Hope I Don't Wake Up."

LeBron James and Michael Jordan are always going to be names that are connected through the annals of basketball. MJ retired from the league the season before LeBron was drafted, so we never got to see the two players play against each other on an NBA court. There also isn't any footage of the pair playing against each other.

The world of basketball is small. Jordan and LeBron have definitely had a lot more interaction with each other than what the cameras have caught, especially when LeBron was younger.

He has spoken about his conversations with MJ before, but Jordan has always kept a low profile in terms of his opinion of Bron and his 20-year career. LBJ hasn't matched up to MJ, according to many. At the same time, some say he has surpassed him.

People have always wondered how a Jordan and LeBron 1-on-1 would go. While we don't know if that could have happened, James did confirm that he played in an open run with MJ in 2001. He also said that the pair played on the same team each other at Jordan's camp in Santa Barbara when he was a rookie in the NBA.

"Antoine Walker was talking so much s**t back and forth. They didn't let me play for the first hour. I am sitting there and waiting my turn. I didn't even think I'd get the opportunity to play. The only reason I got to play is because the guys in the league, after a few hours, some of them get tired."

"They're like 'yeah I am done with this sh*t. Young fella, we need a fifth, you wanna play? For me to be 16 years old and a sophomore in high school, playing with my favorite player of all time. It was like, this can't be real. If you pinched me, I would be like I hope I don't wake up." 

Being 16 and playing with Jordan must have been incredible, especially because LeBron has always openly talked about his admiration for MJ growing up.

James would evolve into one of the biggest names in high school basketball history, going straight to the league and being drafted 1st overall in 2003.

LBJ would attend a camp hosted by Jordan in Santa Barbara for kids and selected college students in the offseason prior to his NBA debut in 2003. LeBron reveals he and MJ were on the same team that night and didn't lose a single game.

"That's Michael Jordan's camp in Santa Barbara. We were definitely on the same team then. I was a rookie in the league and I went to Santa Barbara to MJ's camp. We used to play around 9. The camp would end, he would let the kids watch the first game around 8:30 and then he'd ask the kids to leave."

"We would stay along with the college kids that he'd invite to the camp and we would get a good ass run in for about an hour, hour 15. I was on a team with MJ and we didn't lose a game."

Knowing Jordan and his thirst to win, it'd be almost impossible to beat him alone. Add him with LeBron James? There isn't even a point in trying to play against that and win.

Jordan and LeBron definitely have more stories of their interactions that we aren't privy to. Knowing that 2 GOAT-level players missed out on playing each other on an NBA floor is disheartening, but hopefully, we get to see some footage of MJ vs. Bron from one of the old camps.