Following the Los Angeles Lakers win at the 2020 NBA championship on Sunday night, LeBron James took time out from celebrating with his team to call and check in with one very special person in his life — his mother.
In a video obtained by NBA reporter Shams Charania, the 35-year-old basketball star is seen on the floor of the arena smoking a celebratory cigar as he connects with his mom, Gloria James, 52, over the phone.
Thanking his mother for everything she has done for him, James tells her, "Everything that you have been through, everything that I've seen, it's nothing that can stop me."
He continues, "Cause this s— right here, this is nothing compared to the s— you had to go through. God is good, God is great. I hope I continue to make you proud mom."
James has long discussed his close relationship with his mom, who raised him as a single mother after giving birth at age 16.
The pair lived in Akron, Ohio, until James was around 3 years old and then moved 12 times over a period of three years before Gloria sent him to live with his youth football coach until she found housing, he told Today in 2014.
"She gave me strength to a point where I never even had to think about that, and I have no idea where she got it from. To this day I still won't even ask her, but she's definitely the champion," James said at the time.
He continued: "Just how much responsibility that comes with being a single mom every single day, you don't have that other half or that helping male influence in the house that can — especially in my case, being a son — that can give you that fatherly love or that fatherly guidance. My mother figured [that] out."
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Earlier this summer, James opened up about how his mother is who he missed most while quarantining amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
"It’s the first time in my life that I went that long without seeing my mom," he said during a press conference in July, later adding that she was "the only thing that I really missed."
"I hadn’t seen my mom since All-Star weekend and then I saw her two weeks or three weeks before we had to report to our respective cities," he continued. "That was extreme for me."
James added that his mother helped him get through their separation during the pandemic by assuring him that they would reunite "in due time."
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On Sunday evening, the Los Angeles Lakers were crowned the 2020 NBA champions after defeating the Miami Heat at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida.
Led by performances from James and Anthony Davis, the team won in a 106-93 victory over Miami in Game 6 of their best of seven series. The hard-fought win comes nearly nine months after Lakers legend Kobe Bryant died in a helicopter crash that killed eight others, including his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna.
James now has four NBA titles to his name with this latest victory, bringing him into a tie with other greats such as Shaquille O'Neal and Robert Parish.
This is the 17th title for the Lakers franchise, dating back to their first championship in 1949 when the club was based in Minneapolis. They are now tied with their longtime rivals, the Boston Celtics, for the most NBA championships in league history.
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