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When LeBron James first announced he was “taking his talents to South Beach” before the 2010-11 season, expectations were sky high for the Miami Heat.
James, along with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh, were supposed to cruise to a NBA championship — the first of many to come in Miami.
So when he lost that Finals series to Dirk Nowitzki and the Dallas Mavericks, James felt like he failed — but not because he lost the series. He’d lost games plenty of times before.
It was because he didn’t show up — and that’s what hurt him the most.
James reflected on that 2011 loss on HBO’s “The Shop” on Friday night.
“I thought it would be easy because I was teaming up with some real players,” James said. “You go down there, we lose that Finals, I felt like the world had caved in.
“I’m not happy that I lost, but I left the Finals like, ‘Yo ‘Bron, what the f— was you on man? You were overthinking everything, you didn’t show up, you didn’t do what you were supposed to do, and now you can’t even sleep at night because you didn’t give it all that you had.’
“After that Finals, I was like, ‘That’s never happening again. I may lose again, I may not win everything, but I’ll never fail again,’ … That was my greatest achievement: to overcome that.”
Clearly, his inner pep talk worked. James has been in eight straight NBA Finals, won three titles and was named the Finals MVP three times, among numerous other accolades and accomplishments he has racked up throughout his NBA career.
It seems that sometimes a loss is exactly what it takes to come out on top.
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