LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony recall the first time they met each other
The Lakers and Blazers face off on Friday in Portland. It will be the 34th time LeBron and Melo face off against each other. Of the 33 times the two have faced off in the NBA, LeBron’s teams have won 19 times
As we all know, James and Anthony are brothers off the court. Their relationship goes all the way back to 2001.
LeBron: The first time we met was 2001. 2001? Yeah, it was at the junior Olympics, through Team USA in Colorado Springs. We were both there playing for, it was just like a … I don’t know actually what it was. I think it was like a tryout. You know how they’re doing it now, the high school kids, they’ve got the top 24 high school kids there and I was a sophomore, he was a junior.
Melo: I didn’t really know him, he didn’t know me, the team was kind of separated. He was younger. We didn’t really have much dialogue there. We just always respected each other’s game.
LeBron: I remember coming home and telling my high school teammates how I just seen probably the best high school player up to date that I have seen in my life.
Melo: It wasn’t weird, but it was like, we meet on hotel steps (the next year in Pennsylvania) and not even knowing each other. “Hey Melo, come downstairs and let’s talk.” It was like that. We sat there for hours. It was just very organic and I could tell that at that point in time, that we was kind of looking for that brotherhood, both searching, but not knowing we were searching, but it happened.
Both LeBron and Melo will be first-ballot Hall of Famers one day. It’s incredible they were part of the same draft class and are still playing today.
Melo is averaging 16.9 points, 5.9 rebounds and 1.8 assists in eight games with the Blazers, while LeBron is putting up 25.4 points, 7.0 rebounds and 10.8 assists for the Lakers.
The Blazers are 9-13. The Lakers, meanwhile, are 19-3.