With apologies to true pro basketball fans, I can say I've never understood the NBA. It always seemed to me like a lot of posturing and one-man plays, grandstanding and not a whole lot of teamwork.
However what I've learned lately about superstar LeBron James has made me appreciate things in a whole new way. LeBron was selected by Sports Illustrated as its 2012 Sportsman of the Year, which is an award for his play on the basketball court and his brilliance in analyzing the game, obviously, but also (and more importantly in my opinion) for his numerous equally generous and thoughtful contributions to the community.
LeBron himself loves bikes. It's not uncommon for him to ride his bike to home games, morning practices or other events at the stadium where his Miami Heat plays. Some credit that time on the bike with helping him build the endurance to survive the NBA's grinding season, where he averaged over 37 minutes per game in 2011. And get this: he's even got an ownership share in Cannondale. LeBron even participates in Miami's Critical Mass ride, even recruiting teammates Dwyane Wade and Mario Chalmers to join him.
But it's a whole lot more than that. Read here about LeBron's work with disadvantaged youth, and how he uses his love of bikes and bike culture as a way to reach and motivate kids.