*The President of the United States has gotten in on the national debate surrounding the fate of Cleveland Cavaliers star LeBron James, who becomes a free agent this summer.
President Barack Obama believes there’s an opportunity for the small forward on his hometown Chicago Bulls.
“You know, like I said, I don’t want to meddle,” Obama told TNT. “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.”
Obama was interviewed about a number of basketball subjects by broadcaster Marv Albert on the White House basketball court. The interview will be shown Tuesday night at 8 p.m. EDT.
“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.”
Obama compared James’ situation to the Bulls not winning until Michael Jordan had confidence in 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.”