• LeBron James prioritized basketball first rather than doing "Space Jam 2" 15 years ago
  • James made the right call since he had no heavy credentials to show in 2006
  • James' rise to fame is perfect with the "Space Jam 2" starring role

LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers has accomplished a lot in his decorated basketball career.

But like any other aspiring athlete, he preferred to prioritize establishing his name first before embarking on different avenues. Such is the story of why he initially shunned the chance to do “Space Jam 2” 15 years ago.

Being in the ripe stages of his budding NBA career, the four-time NBA champion felt that the timing was not yet right. He opted to focus on getting better more as a player first and establish himself as one of basketball’s elite players.

“I didn’t think I was ready to do anything of that magnitude. I wanted to continue to focus on my game and give it as much as I could,” James said in an interview with Derek Lawrence of Entertainment Weekly.

If one looks back at how Michael Jordan agreed to do “Space Jam” back in 1996, "His Airness" already accomplished a lot at the time. He was already a four-time NBA champion, a four-time Finals MVP, a five-time league MVP, and a two-time Olympic gold medalist.

As one can see, Jordan had already established himself on the hardwood before venturing out into show business.

In 2006, James was seen as a dominant player but only had one post-season appearance on his basketball resume. Hence, it made sense that he opted to focus on his NBA career first to prove he is not simply an overhyped cager.

Fast-forward to today, there is no question that James has come into his own and is a future NBA Hall of Famer.

Although his story is different compared to that of Jordan, one thing notable is that he never stopped playing.

National Basketball Association superstar LeBron James seen during a game in San Antonio, Texas, on December 30, 2020
National Basketball Association superstar LeBron James seen during a game in San Antonio, Texas, on December 30, 2020 GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Ronald Cortes

Some may argue that when the first "Space Jam" came out, Jordan played and won all his NBA titles with the Bulls.

Meanwhile, James suited up for the Cleveland Cavaliers, Miami Heat and Los Angeles Lakers. The 36-year-old has an NBA ring with all the teams he has played for, yet another achievement up for debate.

Regardless, James made the right call on prioritizing playing pro hoops first. He continues to dominate, but trying out other avenues tied to his rise to fame is something that hardly comes as a surprise.