Why LeBron James’ Teammates Didn’t Like Him in His Rookie Season?

LeBron James set the basketball world on fire when he entered the NBA. Hell, he set the basketball world in fire well before then too.

During James’ rookie season, everyone was swept up in the buzz of the most exciting prospect since Michael Jordan. Well, everyone except his teammates.

That’s according to his coach at the time, the late Paul Silas, who repeatedly implored his players to embrace James’ talents, according to an old piece from Jackie MacMullan.

But it was to no avail. LeBron’s teammates didn’t want to be outshone by an 18-year-old.

“Their egos wouldn’t allow it,” Silas said. “I kept telling them, ‘You have a chance to help one of the game’s future stars,’ but they wouldn’t embrace him. If it bothered LeBron, he never let on.

“We won 35 games that year because of him. He’s had some outstanding seasons since then, but that first one may have been the most impressive because of how he excelled in spite of the jealousy on his own team.”

Of course, whether they liked it or not, LeBron was always going to blaze a trail to greatness and leave those guys in his wake.

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