LeBron James
Photo: Los Angeles Lakers/YouTube

In a recent episode of his show, sports analyst Stephen A. Smith voiced his opinion on LeBron James’ absence from Dwyane Wade’s Hall of Fame induction ceremony.

Wade, LeBron’s former teammate and close friend, was inducted into the Hall of Fame in a star-studded event, but the Lakers superstar opted not to attend.

Smith began by acknowledging LeBron’s autonomy, stating, “He is a grown man, he was under no obligation to be at the Hall of Fame. He can do what he wants to do.”

However, he quickly transitioned into his main point, saying, “Here’s why this subject is worth broaching because to me the last person who should have missed Dwyane Wade’s induction into the Hall of Fame it was LeBron James.”

The crux of Smith’s argument revolves around the idea that James owes a significant portion of his championship success to Dwyane Wade.

Smith noted, “LeBron James, one could easily argue, wouldn’t even know what it’s like to be a champion had it not been for Dwyane Wade.” He went on to emphasize LeBron’s versatility and how he needed a talented playmaker alongside him, similar to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s reliance on Magic Johnson.

Smith firmly expressed his belief that LeBron’s championship pedigree is indebted to Wade, saying, “I’m of the mindset that LeBron James owes his championship pedigree to Dwyane Wade. Because remember before LeBron James arrived with his talents to South Beach, Dwyane Wade had already been a champion.”

Smith also noted how Wade taught James how to handle the pressure on and off the court, especially from the media.

James, often regarded as one of the greatest basketball players of all time, has won four NBA championships, including two with the Heat, alongside Wade.