LeBron James Supports Lakers White House Visit After Biden, Harris Inauguration

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistJanuary 22, 2021

Los Angeles Lakers' LeBron James dribbles the ball during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Golden State Warriors, Monday, Jan. 18, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
Jae C. Hong/Associated Press

No NBA champions visited the White House while Donald Trump was president, but LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers could restart the tradition after Joe Biden was inaugurated.

"It would be great," James said Thursday of celebrating at the White House.

However, the superstar conceded there currently isn't a plan in place: "I don't think we've had any conversations with our team."

The Lakers earned the 2020 NBA title with a win over the Miami Heat in the finals, giving LeBron the fourth championship of his career.

All of James' previous titles came when Barack Obama was in office, and James celebrated his 2016 championship with the Cleveland Cavaliers before the transition to Trump.

The practice of honoring winners of major sports changed over the past four years with many athletes strongly opposing Trump's divisive words and actions. After an invitation was rescinded for the Golden State Warriors in 2017, LeBron called out the president:

LeBron James @KingJames

U bum @StephenCurry30 already said he ain't going! So therefore ain't no invite. Going to White House was a great honor until you showed up!

A year later, he said that "no one wants the invite" regardless of who won between the Warriors and Cavaliers.

The Toronto Raptors also didn't visit the White House after winning in 2019.

The change in the presidency could allow for a fresh start of this tradition.