Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James gestures during the second half against the Boston Celtics during Game 6 of an NBA basketball second-round playoff series, Thursday, May 13, 2010, in Boston. James is eligible to opt out of his contract this summer. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
One Chicago Bulls fan with a lot of juice is making no bones about wanting LeBron James on the team.
In between managing two wars, trying to turn the economy around and stopping an ecological crisis in the Gulf of Mexico, President Obama told sportscaster Marv Albert that King James would look pretty good in a Bulls' uniform.
"You know, like I said, I don't want to meddle," Obama told Albert in a TNT interview set to air Tuesday night. "I will say this: (Derrick) Rose, Joakim Noah it's a pretty good core. You know, you could see LeBron fitting in pretty well there."
The man knows his hoops, but you don't have to know much to want the best player in the game on your team. After a disappointing playoff run with the Cleveland Cavaliers, James can become a free agent this summer. And just about every team wants him, including his current one
"I think that the most important thing for LeBron right now is actually to find a structure where he's got a coach that he respects and is working hard with teammates who care about him and if that's in Cleveland, then he should stay in Cleveland," Obama said. "If he doesn't feel like he can get it there, then someplace else."
The Knicks are reportedly preparing to make a big offer to James, and new New Jersey Nets owner and Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokorov hinted he might make an overture. Chicago became a rumored destination earlier this month, when reports suggested the team might hire University of Kentucky Coach John Calipari, who has ties to James through their common agent.
Obama compared James' situation to the Bulls not winning until Michael Jordan trusted Phil Jackson, Scottie Pippen and the rest of his teammates. Once that happened, Chicago won six NBA championships in the 1990s.
"It wasn't until you got that framework around you that you could be a champion," Obama said. "Same thing happened with Kobe (Bryant). You know, I think that, first with Shaq (O'Neal) then later with (Pau) Gasol, you know, he's gotten that sense of a team around him and I think LeBron hasn't quite been able to get that yet. That's what he needs to find."
Should James opt to stay in Cleveland, just up the road from his hometown of Akron, he'll be starting over in a sense. The team just fired coach Mike Brown after five years.