In fact, Chris B. Haynes of Cleveland.com actually used the words "Delonte West says LeBron James saved his life" in the headline. Here are some quotes from Haynes' interview with Delonte:
I was dealing with so much guilt. I wasn't processing things right. I was under the impression that I was going to do nine years minimum. Everything I've ever dreamed of, the sweat and tears of what I worked for would all be wiped away.
(After his 2009 weapons charge.)
He [James] sat with me in the locker room for like an hour and was rapping it up with me by giving me words of encouragement. Keep in mind, practice was still going on. He left practice and sat with me for a while, just keeping me company. He later walked me down the stairs and said, 'D, I don't know where you're going or what you're about to do, but I'll be right here when you get back.'
My spirits were so high at that point. I don't know what would have happened had I left in the condition I was in prior. It's a testament to the type of person he is.
And on their friendship:
It's hard to have great friends in professional sports because you're so busy with your schedule, but if James befriends you, then he's your friend until the end. That's hard to say about a player, let alone a megastar. When we do see each other, it's like you were with him playing video games yesterday. That's a credit to his character and his humbleness in how he was raised.
I'm going for the Cavs all the way. To this day, I still wear my Cavs hat and game shorts. Out of all the teams I've played for, that was a special period in my life.
This is not something I expected to hear from Delonte. I always assumed that he and LeBron probably weren't on the best terms--although the "special period of my life" comment makes sense if you believe the rumors...
Follow Mark Vandeusen on Twitter @LucidSportsFan Mark Van Deusen 6/03/2015 02:41:00 PM Tweet Edit