â€œWeâ€™re gonna get him,” James said. “Absolutely.â€
Quick story. I used to cover the UConn basketball team and enjoyed attending the summer recruiting camps to get a first-hand look at the players who were on the rise. It was something I kept doing for a few years even after I started covering baseball just to see old friends and hang out.
In the summer of 2001, LeBron was at the adidas ABCD Camp at Fairleigh Dickinson in New Jersey. He was getting ready for his junior year of high school and was already a beast. The best player in New York that year was a kid named Lenny Cook from Brooklyn. The camp organizers allowed LeBron and Lenny to play a game of 1-on-1 on the middle court one afternoon.
The stands were full of players, high school coaches, college coaches and recruiters. The atmosphere was like a heavyweight title fight. LeBron destroyed Lenny, raining 3-pointers down on him then going by him and dunking.
Poor Lenny looked like he got hit by a bus. When LeBron hit the winning bucket, he put the ball down on the court and looked into the crowd to see if there was anybody else who wanted a shot. Nobody did. He was the king and everybody knew it even then.
LBJ loves the New York scene and always has. The Yankees have a good recruiter on their side.