LeBron James says being a billionaire sucks because he can't go to Starbucks
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LeBron James has opened up about the impact fame has on him.
With a nickname of 'King James' and widely considered one of the greatest professional basketball players in history, it's not hard to imagine that LeBron Raymone James Sr. doesn't get much privacy.
Having first been introduced to basketball at the age of nine and playing organised basketball by fifth grade, James' talent was further consolidated when he was picked by the Cleveland Caviliars as the team's number one choice at the 2003 NBA drafts.
While this may have acted as a clear marker of James' skill and predicted his road to monumental success, the 38-year-old has since reflected he still finds it hard to adjust to the immense fame that's come with being an NBA star.
James - who is the only player in the whole of the NBA's history to record at least 30,000 points, 10,000 rebounds, and 10,000 assists, as per the Olympics - told the New York Times: "I don’t want to say it ever becomes too much, but there are times when I wish I could do normal things.
"I wish I could just walk outside. I wish I could just, like, walk into a movie theater and sit down and go to the concession stand and get popcorn. I wish I could just go to an amusement park just like regular people. I wish I could go to Target sometimes and walk into Starbucks and have my name on the cup just like regular people.
"I’m not sitting here complaining about it, of course not. But it can be challenging at times."
Founder of sporting Instagram account 'House of Highlights' Omar Raja noted 'people's interest in athletes moves very quickly, especially with the NBA season'. However, James' social media stories 'would do as well as his poster dunks' which Raja views as 'crazy'.
Despite Raja's shock at just how 'crazy' the focus on James on social media has been - James, at the time of writing, has 144 million followers on the platform - basketball coach, former professional player and friend to James, Dru Joyce III told Sky Sports: "[James] knew how good he was, and he knew the attention would come with it.
"The things you see now I witnessed at 11-years-old, just on a smaller scale. He's enhanced his tools and his fundamentals have sharpened - his game has become perfect."
James' high school head coach, Keith Dambrot, has also spoken out about the basketball player's level of fame.
He told Sky Sports: "The guy picked up on things immediately. Three games into his freshman year I thought he had a chance at being a pro and I think by his sophomore year we all knew he wasn't going to college.
"He resurrected my career. He made me a college coach again. Typical of him, everything he touches turns to gold."
Speaking after the Lakers beat the Pacers on Thursday, 2 February in Indianapolis, James - who actively uses his level of fame to speak out in support of movements such as Black Lives Matter - resolved: "Hopefully I made an impact enough so people appreciate what I did, and still appreciate what I did off the floor as well, even when I’m done.
"But I don’t live for that. I live for my family, for my friends and my community that needs that voice."
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