ATLANTA -- If LeBron James wasn't LeBron James and instead was a Cavaliers fan living in Akron he might not like himself all that much right now.
James said Thursday he can relate to why many fans, especially from his home state, continue to be angry at him. But he also said people upset with his decision to sign with the Heat need to move on.
"If I was a fan and I was on the outside looking in, I could be upset a little bit if one of my favorite players left," James said. "Or if I felt like he betrayed us or whatever the case may be. But you have to get over it."
James later tweeted that he was not speaking specifically to Cavaliers' fans: "Let's clear this up! I never said to the Cavs fans to 'get over it.' I've never and will never say anything bad about them. 7 years of joy!"
James is an avid sports fan who regularly attends football games from his old high school to the NFL. As a supporter of the Yankees, Cowboys and Ohio State, he's actually having a tough week with all three having troubles lately.
That is why he says he can understand to the backlash he's received. But he is not about to apologize for it.
"Sports are very emotional and fans are very emotional," James said. "At times they really believe you may be related to them you and you sleep in their house. When you do something wrong and you leave their house they can become very emotional. I've understood that over the years. But at the same time, you have to understand you have to do what is best yourself."
Brian Windhorst is an ESPN.com NBA writer.