• LeBron James gets an award for his influence in sports
  • Athletes commend James for being strong voice in sports
  • James is gearing up for the next NBA season

It just keeps getting sweeter for LeBron James as 2020 winds down.

Showing no signs of slowing down at age 35, the NBA star added another accolade to his long list of achievements when he was named the 2020 TIME Athlete of the Year.

Most know that James was chiefly responsible for leading the Los Angeles Lakers to their record 17th NBA title.

Although critics would bat that the Lakers had a good lineup, the fact remains that the four-time NBA champion showed that he remains a force to reckon with.

In addition, he is the first player in NBA history to win the Finals MVP trophy with three different teams, CNN reported.

But his accomplishments go beyond the court. He is recognized as one of sports’ leading voices, speaking out against racial injustice and police brutality.

"Not only is he the best player, but he has the most powerful voice," tennis star Naomi Osaka said of James.

Also sharing his thoughts was Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton. He points out James showed him that he was not alone in fighting for similar causes.

"When I saw across the pond that another top athlete was also fighting for similar causes, I knew, OK, I'm not alone here," Hamilton stated.

Aside from that, James was also a driving figure in the November United States Presidential Elections. He pushed for voter registration by setting up “More Than A Vote,” a group made up of prominent black athletes and artists. It was an effort to combat systemic, racist voter suppression.

James is now preparing for the 18th season, having little time to recover from their recent NBA title conquest.

Los Angeles had a busy offseason, getting new faces that make the Lakers one of the favorites for the 2020-21 NBA crown.

From the way he was speaking, it is clear that James is still hungry for more titles for as long as he can play at a competitive level.

“We feel really good right now,” he stressed. “But you don’t want to feel great. Because it’s never done.”

It appears to be the same way for James off the court.

“It would never, ever go back to us just playing our respective sports,” he asserted. “It will never be that way for as long as I’m around. And hopefully, I’ve inspired enough athletes that even when I’m gone, that legacy will carry on.”

 LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers
LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers Getty Images | Douglas P. DeFelice