The reigning NBA MVP, champion and Olympic gold medalist earned the prestigious award given out annually by Sports Illustrated for an incredible year on and off the court.
“No matter how tough it gets, I know I can figure out a way to get through it,” James told theGrio’s Todd Johnson of what he learned this year. “Just…staying humble, staying passionate about what I do and then just absolutely going out and getting it no matter how tough it is.”
James’ 2012 was tremendous by any measure. He joins such sports greats as Michael Jordan, Muhammad Ali and Joe Montana, who have all won the award in year’s past.
Mike Krzyzewski, legendary coach of Duke men’s basketball, knows James well. Krzyzewski coached James on two Olympic teams, both of which resulted in gold medals.
“He’s an incredible leader and has a great spirit,” Coach K said at the ‘Sportsman’ presentation Wednesday night in New York City. “People follow him and knows where to lead them.”
James, who has successfully re-branded himself since his infamous ‘Decision’ in 2010, was joined Wednesday night by his fiancée, Savannah Brinson.
The Heat face the Knicks Thursday night in Miami.
“This is an honor, it’s a huge honor for me and very excited and very humbled about it,” James said. “So I just want to continue to impact the game the way I know I’m capable of doing.”
Follow theGrio’s Todd Johnson on Twitter @rantoddj