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LeBron James talks about 'The Decision,' his hate for Cleveland as a child and a possible return to the Cavaliers

August 17, 2010 |  8:49 am

James_400 LeBron James grew up hating Cleveland. But even after everything that has happened this summer, he can also see himself playing there again.

Those are just two of the revelations from GQ magazine's September cover story on the NBA superstar by J.R. Moehringer, who had two face-to-face meetings with James during the days leading up to "The Decision" as well as a phone conversation six days after the superstar announced he was taking his talents from the Cleveland Cavaliers to the Miami Heat.

James tells Moehringer he has no regrets over the way he handled his decision, saying he would change "(n)othing at all." He also says he can envision one day playing in Cleveland again.

"If there was an opportunity for me to return," he says, "and those fans welcome me back, that'd be a great story."

When reminded that many fans there responded to his departure by burning his jersey, James responded, "Maybe the ones burning my jersey were never LeBron fans anyway."

That, by the way, is the first of two third-person "LeBron" references in the preview of the article on GQ's website. The other is in response to Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert's over-the-top angry reaction to James' decision:

"I don't think he ever cared about LeBron. My mother always told me: 'You will see the light of people when they hit adversity. You'll get a good sense of their character.' Me and my family have seen the character of that man."

He went on to say that Gilbert's reaction "made me feel more comfortable that I made the right decision."

James also speaks of growing up in Akron, only 30 minutes from Cleveland: "It's not far, but it is far. And Clevelanders, because they were the bigger-city kids when we were growing up, looked down on us.… So we didn't actually like Cleveland. We hated Cleveland growing up. There's a lot of people in Cleveland we still hate to this day."
-- Chuck Schilken
Photo: LeBron James is introduced as a member of the Miami Heat on July 9. Credit: Marc Serota / Getty Images