President Barack Obama is a guest on Larry King Live tonight. According to a transcript released by CNN, the president clarified his earlier remarks and said it would be a wonderful story if James remains in Cleveland. The entire exchange, courtesy of CNN, is posted below.
KING: One other thing. LeBron James is with us tomorrow night. We pre-interviewed him and he says, all things being equal, he'll probably lean toward Cleveland. That's where the grew up in Akron. But he grew up a Bull fan. You want him to go to Chicago, right?
OBAMA: No, no, no. I --
KING: What did you say?
OBAMA: I want to be clear. What I said to --
KING: Clear it up.
OBAMA: First of all, LeBron, I had a chance to meet him. Wonderful young man, amazing talent. What I said to him was, I didn't say it to him, I said it to Marv Albert. He needs to be in a place where he's got a coach and a team around him that can do what Phil Jackson and the Bulls did for Michael Jordan. Michael Jordan couldn't win a championship on his own. It's all about having a team concept that works. He hasn't quite gotten that yet and he needs to find that situation.
I'll be honest with you, and my folks in Chicago may be mad at me for saying this, but I think it'd be a wonderful story if LeBron says, you know what, I'm going to stay here in Cleveland. He's from Ohio. That's a town that has had some tough times. For him to say, I'm going to make a commitment to this city, you know, I think would be a wonderful thing.
But he's got to make sure that he's got a team around him and a coach that he respects, he's bought into a team concept, he's willing to be coached. If he does that, he'll have an even more remarkable career than he's having right now.