Brian Windhorst Knows LeBron James

Not only did the Akron Beacon-Journal beat writer give a great little ESPN Insider chat, but then he reproduced the whole thing for free on his blog.

Now that the nation is deep in the grips of LeBron James mania, let's hear from someone who actually knows a thing or two about him. For instance, here's Windhorst on LeBron James' off-season regimen:

  • "He actually bikes around Akron a lot. There are some hills in the area where he lives and he and his friends ride around early in the morning. He also holds these super-secret pickup games at various gyms in the middle of the night. Several NBA players fly in and take part like Nene and J.R. Smith. I've heard the call goes out to players and just gives 12 hours notice."

On the WIndhorst/James relations:

  • "He and I have a professional relationship and he knows my family members and I know his. But he gets mad at me from time to time and currently I think members of his inner circle are mad at me for writing a story back in Feb. on this website about how the Cavs are catering to them. So it isn't all peaches and cream."

On signing autographs:

  • "He signs lots of autographs for Upper Deck and I've heard him refer to that on more than one occassion. But I've also seen him sign lots of things. There isn't a game that doesn't by when he doesn't get asked for something special. Opposing players come into the locker room all the time looking for his autograph for their friends or families. Believe it or not, I know that referees have sent stuff to him to be signed. It can get overwhelming."

Interesting side comment:

  • "His family took $100K from an agent when he was a junior and probably many more loans we don't know about. The NCAA would've looked very closely. I'm sure they have an OJ Mayo task force already lined up."