A TIMELINE of GREATNESS | A look at key dates in LeBron James’ life

Dec. 30, 1984: LeBron Raymone James is born at Akron City Hospital.

July 1999: With friends Sian Cotton, Dru Joyce and Willie McGee, James, at age 14, helps Akron AAU team to a national runner-up finish in Orlando, Fla.

March 25, 2000: As a 15-year-old freshman, James scores 25 points and grabs nine rebounds to lead St. Vincent-St. Mary High School to a state championship victory over Jamestown Greenview.

March 24, 2001: James scores 25 points and has 10 rebounds to lead St. V-M to a second state title over Casstown Miami East. Youngest player ever named Ohio’s Mr. Basketball.

Feb. 18, 2002: Pictured on Sports Illustrated magazine cover with the title, “The Chosen One.”

March 20, 2002: Named Ohio’s Mr. Basketball a second time.

Feb. 8, 2003: Coming back after a suspension for accepting free jerseys, scores 52 points in win over Westchester (Calif.) High School.

March 17, 2003: Again named Ohio’s Mr. Basketball, becoming first player to win the award three times.

March 22, 2003: Scores 25 points and has 11 rebounds to lead the Irish to mythical national championship and a third state title by beating Kettering Alter.

May 21, 2003: Receives a $90 million endorsement contract with Nike.

May 22, 2003: Cavaliers win NBA Draft lottery in Secaucus, N.J., ensuring James will play for his hometown pro team.

June 26, 2003: Drafted No. 1 by the Cavaliers.

Oct. 29, 2003: Scores 25 points and has nine assists in NBA debut in Sacramento, Calif.

April 20, 2004: Named NBA Rookie of the Year, the youngest to win the honor.

July 12, 2006: Signs three-year contract extension with option. Contract ends June 30, 2010.

June 14, 2007: Cavs lose in Game 4 of the NBA Finals in sweep by the San Antonio Spurs.

Nov. 3, 2008: James becomes the youngest player and fastest ever to reach all of the following NBA milestones: 10,000 points, 2,500 rebounds, 2,500 assists, 700 steals and 300 blocks.

Aug. 24, 2008: Wins Olympic gold medal on team with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh.

May 4, 2009: Wins first NBA MVP Award, receiving it at the gym at St. Vincent-St. Mary.

May 2, 2010: Wins second NBA MVP Award and celebrates at University of Akron’s Rhodes Arena.

May 13, 2010: James has 27 points, 19 rebounds and 10 assists in Game 6 loss to the Boston Celtics, his last game with the Cavaliers.

June 1, 2010: Tells Larry King that Cavaliers have edge in signing him.

July 8, 2010: Announces he is joining the Miami Heat. Soon after, Dan Gilbert blasts James in a letter that refers to his decision to leave Cleveland as a “cowardly betrayal.”

Aug. 7, 2010: James returns to take part in his annual bikeathon, his first public appearance in Akron since leaving the Cavaliers for the Heat.

October 2010: Donates 1,000 computers to Akron Public Schools.

Oct. 26-27, 2010: Heat lose the first game of the season to the Celtics. The following night, the Cavaliers beat the Celtics in their first game without James, 95-87.

Dec. 2, 2010: Returning to Cleveland to play his first game against his old team, James sits out the fourth quarter but still manages to finish with 38 points, eight assists and five rebounds as the Heat defeat the Cavaliers 118-90.

April 6, 2011: James becomes the seventh player in NBA history to record seven consecutive 2,000 point seasons.

June 12, 2011: Heat lose Game 6 of NBA Finals to the Dallas Mavericks, dropping series 4-2.

Aug. 8, 2011: James’ new Wheels for Education program kicks off.

November 2011: Robocalls from James urge Akron voters to support tax levy for Akron Public Schools. Issue fails by small margin.

Jan. 1, 2012: James is engaged to his longtime girlfriend, Savannah Brinson.

Feb. 16, 2012: In a visit to Quicken Loans to practice for a game against the Cavaliers, James speaks about a possible return to Cleveland. “I think it would be great. It would be fun to play in front of these fans again. I am here as a Miami Heat player, and I’m happy where I am now, but I don’t rule that out in any sense. If I decide to come back, hopefully the fans will accept me.”

May 12, 2012: James receives his third NBA MVP award in four years. Watching his acceptance speech are six third-graders from Rankin school who were flown to Miami at his invitation.

June 21, 2012: James and the Heat win the NBA championship.

Aug. 12, 2012: As a member of the U.S. basketball team, James wins his second gold medal at the London Olympic Games.

Aug. 19, 2012: James writes an opinion article in the Akron Beacon Journal in observance of the first anniversary of his Wheels for Education.

December 2012: Named as Sports Illustrated magazine’s Sportsman of the Year.

May 3, 2013: In an interview with the Beacon Journal, James talks about his $1 million donation for the renovation of the St. Vincent-St. Mary gymnasium.

May 5, 2013: Receives fourth NBA MVP award with 10 young “academic all-stars” from his hometown by his side.

June 20, 2013: Heat win second consecutive NBA championship.

Sept. 14, 2013: Marries Brinson in San Diego.

Nov. 5, 2013: Becomes the fifth player in NBA history to score at least 10 points in 500 consecutive games.

Dec. 14, 2013: The LeBron James Arena at St. Vincent- St. Mary is opened.

February 2014: Starz network gives the green light to James’ sitcom, Survivor’s Remorse.

March 8, 2014: Returns to Cleveland for Zydrunas Ilgauskas jersey retirement ceremony.

June 19, 2014: Heat reveal that James and his wife, Savannah, are expecting their third child.

June 25, 2014: Reports say James will opt out of his Miami contract and become an unrestricted free agent.

July 4, 2014: Reports say that James’ agent, Rich Paul, is meeting with NBA teams during the week, including the Cavaliers.

July 9, 2014: James meets with Miami Heat team officials in Las Vegas.

July 11, 2014: James announces return to Cleveland Cavaliers by telling Sports Illustrated “I’m coming home.”

Akron Beacon Journal

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