LeBron James quantity change: Lakers star reportedly will ditch 23 jersey after ‘Area Jam’

LeBron James is anticipated to have a brand new quantity through the 2021-22 NBA season.

In keeping with Shams Charania of The Athletic, James goes to be carrying the No. 6 jersey subsequent yr, the quantity he wore throughout his four-year run with the Miami Warmth.

The change will come after his look in “Area Jam 2: A New Legacy” through the summer season.

This is not the primary time James has modified numbers throughout his profession, neither is it the primary time that he has worn the No. 6. Here is a quick historical past of the jerseys he has worn throughout his 18-year NBA profession.

MORE: How will Lakers form roster round LeBron, Anthony Davis?

Why LeBron James has worn Nos. 23, 6 throughout his NBA profession 

Throughout his first stint with the Cavaliers from 2003-10, James donned the No. 23 jersey. The rationale that he selected that jersey had all the things to do with Michael Jordan, as he defined in a 2019 interview.

“I put on the No. 23 for the good Michael Jordan,” James mentioned. “Once I began enjoying basketball, I used to be like: ‘Oh man, that two-three seems to be good. I wanna be capable to fly like him. I wanna be capable to shoot like him. I wanna be capable to dunk on someone like him. I wanna be capable to stick out my tongue like him within the air and yell in someone’s face like MJ.’

“So, ever since I began enjoying ball, I wore No. 23.”

Nonetheless, when James first joined the Warmth in 2010, he did transfer off the No. 23 jersey and opted to put on the No. 6 as a substitute. On the time, he defined that he was doing that to honor Jordan’s legacy.

“I simply suppose that what Michael Jordan has carried out for the sport must be acknowledged ultimately quickly,” James mentioned, per Bleacher Report. “There could be no LeBron James, no Kobe Bryant, no Dwyane Wade if there wasn’t Michael Jordan first.”

MORE: NBA fines Pat Riley for LeBron feedback

On the time, James even petitioned for the quantity to be retired throughout the league.

“I really feel like no NBA participant ought to put on 23. I’m beginning a petition and I’ve bought everybody within the NBA to signal it.” James mentioned. “Now, if I’m not going to put on No. 23, then no person else ought to be capable to put on it.”

That by no means actually gained any steam, and so, when James went again to Cleveland in 2014, he elected to put on the No. 23 jersey once more. He has worn 23 since that time from 2014-21 till the most recent swap was introduced.

Why is LeBron James switching jersey numbers once more?

However why is LeBron making the swap once more? Nicely, it may have one thing to do along with his teammate Anthony Davis.

Earlier than coming to the Lakers, Davis had at all times worn the 23 jersey with the Pelicans, and James was superb with the thought of gifting Davis the quantity. Nonetheless, per Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports activities, Nike shut that down forward of the 2019-20 season:

Attributable to manufacturing points and the large monetary hit Nike would have absorbed from the No. 23 James stock that’s already been produced, Nike couldn’t accommodate the request for this season, sources mentioned.

After a few years, maybe Nike is healthier capable of accommodate the swap, particularly if James and Davis gave them superior discover.

Nonetheless, as Charania and Tim Cato of The Athletic reported, Davis is anticipated to maintain his No. 3 jersey. So, possibly there’s one more reason that James elected to vary issues up once more.

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