The writing More Than an Athlete stands on the red and white playground, on which LeBron James with a smile on his lips is training with a herd of screaming children. The King serves assists, signs autographs and the wall of the playground that his foundation has given to one of the Bagnolet schools on the outskirts of Paris where the King brought the More than an athlete Summer Academy. The project is linked to the I promise school that he inaugurated in his hometown (Akron, Ohio) and aims to offer help and gathering places for children and young people living in disadvantaged areas.

Face to face with the King Photoreportage of a day with LeBron James in Paris | Image 0

In the afternoon we move from the playground to the Nike showroom, not far from the Arc de Triomphe, to chat with the designers Jason Petrie and Tim Gobet of the new line that Nike will bring on the NBA parquet starting from next season. Halfway through the talk, The Chosen One enters the room and sits next to the two designers about 50 cm from my face. LeBron James is one of those persons with an aura: when he enters a room the atmosphere changes and I'm quite sure the effect would be the same even if he was not the best basketball player in business as well as a world sports superstar. For fifteen minutes he spoke (while eating red gummy candies) about the inspirations behind the new shoe - his family, African-American women and his school of Akron - and his legacy. A phrase that struck me in his short speech concerned his charitable projects and his school: "I know where I come from, I know who I am and I am comfortable with my story. For this I want to be a platform for those who he does not have the means or the voice to make himself heard ".
He said it in a steady, calm voice, his gaze hidden behind the hair's visor as if he wanted to hide himself a little more and show more the More and less the Athlete.

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