LeBron James arrived back at the Cleveland Cavaliers this season urging caution as talk of immediate NBA titles rose - arguing it would take time for the team to settle into a championship-challenging rhythm.
Now though, five months into the 2014-15 season, and the four-time NBA MVP is willing to make a huge sacrifice if it helps the Cavaliers improve their inconsistent form.
The team's undisputed leader is willing to take the dramatic step of benching himself if it means that the Cavs can win more.
"For me being the leader of the team, it doesn't matter," explained LeBron via Cleveland.com.
"Whatever this team needs in order for this team to win, I'll come off the bench and I'm serious...I'll come off the bench. If it helps our team, that's what it's about, man."
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Whether head coach David Blatt, a man already under a fair amount of pressure after Cleveland's difficulties this season, would be willing to take the best player in the NBA out of his starting lineup is questionable.
Ok, it's not questionable. It would never happen.
The fact though that James is willing to put his ego to one side and offer himself up to be sacrificed for the greater good of the team shows just how seriously he is taking his second stint back in his home state.
With fellow superstars in waiting Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love also in the lineup the Cavs have, at times this season, struggled to find the right rhythm on the court.
Unlike in Miami where LeBron, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh clicked almost immediately there have been some growing pains for the Cleveland 'Big Three.'
James' comments though come with the team on their best run of the season. After the Hawks' lost this week James and co now hold the league's longest current win streak with 11 victories back to back.
No I in TEAM
This run has coincided with fellow offseason signing Kevin Love seeing reduced touches but LeBron James, as a good leader does, isn't about to let a teammate fall on his sword. In his eyes everyone, including himself, should be prepared to do whatever it takes to take the Cavaliers to the top.
"It's about a team," said James this week.
"How we all fit together, how the five guys on the court fit together, how the eight guys or ten guys on the bench help the guys that's on the floor and so on and so on. Sacrifice is the biggest word in team sports, but it's not about saying it, it's about doing it as well. It's about living it."
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