LeBron Reacts to Howard’s Comparison
During Thursday’s announcement in Orlando about his decision to bypass his opt-out clause for 2012-13, (Dwight) Howard referenced (LeBron) James’ decision to leave the Cleveland Cavaliers for the Heat in 2010 free agency.
“Nobody wants to be hated,” Howard said at his Thursday media session. “I don’t think LeBron wants to be hated, but he did what he felt was best for him. The way he did it could have been wrong, but he did what was best for him. And he has to live with it, just like me.”
James was asked Friday if he was surprised Howard invoked his name.
“I think his situation is totally different from mine,” James said. “Everyone keeps comparing all these guys’ situations to mine. I fulfilled my contract in Cleveland. I was an unrestricted free agent, and I was a free agent. I could have done whatever I wanted to do; I could have signed back with the Cavs or leave.
“I mean, I know it’s going to come up,” James said of such references. “I think people should realize I was unrestricted and I was free, as a free agent. That’s what the collective bargaining is all about, that’s why the rules are put in like that. And my situation is different from theirs.
“But I understand that every time someone has an opportunity to leave or go, my name will come up.”