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LeBron James is headed to Los Angeles.
The NBA star is moving from the Cleveland Cavaliers to the Lakers starting with the 2018-19 season, according to his agency, Klutch Sports, which tweeted the news Sunday afternoon (see below).
The move also gets James closer to Hollywood. The megastar has a production company, SpringHill Entertainment, along with his partner, Maverick Carter, which has several projects in the works.
Among them are a new House? Party, a revival of the Kid ‘n Play-fronted New Line comedy franchise that started in 1990 and was followed by sequels in 1991 and 1994. Atlanta‘s Stephen Glover and Jamal Olori are writing the screenplay.
A Space Jam remake also is in development. On the TV side, SpringHill’s credits include Survivor’s Remorse, which wrapped its four-season run on Starz in October.
James also had a supporting role in the 2015 Amy Schumer comedy Trainwreck.
Among those welcoming James to L.A. were former Laker great Kobe Bryant, who wrote “Welcome to the family” on Twitter.
Welcome to the family @KingJames #lakers4life #striveforgreatness @JeanieBuss @MagicJohnson and RP well done!!!
— Kobe Bryant (@kobebryant) July 2, 2018
Also among those celebrating the news were Ice Cube (who gave a shout-out to Lakers president of basketball operations Magic Johnson), L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Snoop Dogg.
There is a God! Must be Magic! #happydaysarehereagain https://t.co/HUC9QIzzle
— Ice Cube (@icecube) July 2, 2018
Welcome home, @KingJames. Here’s to great days ahead. The City of Angels is ready for you to fly. EG
— Eric Garcetti (@ericgarcetti) July 2, 2018
Welcome, @KingJames. pic.twitter.com/Gy7JywiUwu
— Arnold (@Schwarzenegger) July 2, 2018
Welcome home @KingJames pic.twitter.com/sq6NrloqXu
— Snoop Dogg (@SnoopDogg) July 2, 2018
In a 2015 THR cover story, James detailed his ambitions in both Hollywood and basketball. “You definitely want a break at times,” he said. “But I wouldn’t change shoes with anybody. I’ve been put in this position for a reason; the man above has given me some unbelievable abilities, and I’m going to take full advantage of it while I can.”
James, the NBA’s best all-around player and biggest star, will now lead a young Lakers team that has been overmatched in recent years while rebuilding but will instantly rise with James.
James is a four-time NBA MVP and three-time NBA Finals MVP. He took the Cavaliers to the NBA Finals in June for the fourth straight year, but his team lost to the Golden State Warriors.
This is the third time in eight years James has changed teams. He returned to the Cavs in 2014 after four seasons in Miami. The 33-year-old had previously said he wanted to finish his career in Ohio, and although he’s leaving home again, Cleveland fans are more forgiving after he ended the city’s 52-year sports championship drought in 2016.
Cavs chairman Dan Gilbert acknowledged the accomplishment in a statement late Sunday, referring to the June 19, 2016, game in which the team won the championship.
“None of this would have happened if LeBron James did not agree to come back home and lead the Cavaliers to the promised land,” Gilbert said. “The entire Cavaliers franchise thanks LeBron for that precious moment and for all of the excitement he delivered as he led our team to four straight NBA Finals appearances. … LeBron, you came home and delivered the ultimate goal. Nothing but appreciation and gratitude for everything you put into every moment you spent in a Cavaliers uniform. We look forward to the retirement of the famous #23 Cavs jersey one day down the line…”
James became a free agent last week after declining his $35.6 million contract option for next season.
— Klutch Sports Group (@KlutchSports) July 2, 2018
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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