- Associated Press - Thursday, July 8, 2010

Quotes from LeBron James and reaction from around the NBA after he announced Thursday that he will leave Cleveland to play for the Miami Heat next season:

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“It ultimately came down to where I feel like I can win the most and where I was going to be happy with my friends and family.” _ LeBron James

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“I feel like this is going to give me the best opportunity to win. And to win for multiple years. Not only just to win in the regular season, or just to win five games in a row or three games in a row. I want to be able to win championships and I feel like I can compete down there.” _ James

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“Well, for me, it’s not about sharing. It’s about everybody having their own spotlight and then just doing what’s best for the team.” _ James on playing with Heat stars Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh

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“There’s magic in the number three.” _ Wade

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“Yeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” _ Bosh on Twitter

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“I gave a lot to that organization. My talents, my seven years, and I tried to take them places where they never been before.” _ James on Cavaliers

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“You simply don’t deserve this kind of cowardly betrayal. … I PERSONALLY GUARANTEE THAT THE CLEVELAND CAVALIERS WILL WIN AN NBA CHAMPIONSHIP BEFORE THE SELF-TITLED FORMER ‘KING’ WINS ONE. You can take it to the bank.” _ Cavaliers majority owner Dan Gilbert in letter to Cleveland fans posted on team website

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“If you thought we were motivated before tonight to bring the hardware to Cleveland, I can tell you that this shameful display of selfishness and betrayal by one of our very own has shifted our ‘motivation’ to previously unknown and previously never experienced levels.” _ Gilbert

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“This shocking act of disloyalty from our home grown ‘chosen one’ sends the exact opposite lesson of what we would want our children to learn. And ‘who’ we would want them to grow-up to become. But the good news is that this heartless and callous action can only serve as the antidote to the so-called ‘curse’ on Cleveland, Ohio. The self-declared former ‘King’ will be taking the ‘curse’ with him down south. And until he does ‘right’ by Cleveland and Ohio, James (and the town where he plays) will unfortunately own this dreaded spell and bad karma. Just watch.” _ Gilbert

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“I never wanted to leave Cleveland. My heart will always be around that area. But I also felt like this is the greatest challenge for me, is to move on.” _ James

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“At the end of the day, I feel awful. I feel even worse that I wasn’t able to bring an NBA championship to that city.” _ James

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“It’s bad, it’s not good. We’ll deal with it. It’s Cleveland, it’s typical Cleveland.” _ Cleveland bar owner Frank Borally

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“Cmon cavs fans don’t do that. That man went hard for y’all for 7 yrs. He doin what’s best for him burning his jersey is messed up.” _ Orlando Magic’s Dwight Howard on Twitter

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“We are disappointed that LeBron James did not pick the New York Knicks, but we respect his decision.” _ New York Knicks president Donnie Walsh

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“We have a vision of a championship team and need to invest wisely and for the long term. Fortunately, we have more than one plan to reach success, and, as I have found in all areas of my business, that is key to achieving it.” _ New Jersey Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov

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“All of us are ultimately going to take less money because we wanted to play along side each other and we feel like we can be great together.” _ James

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“In this league, you become a superstar as an individual. But you become a champion as a teammate. I know the history and I understand that.” _ James

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“I remain convinced that this organization made the strongest of bids to acquire LeBron James during this free agency period.” _ Chicago Bulls general manager Gar Forman

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“They (the Cavaliers) had the best record in the league the last two seasons and didn’t make it out of the Eastern Conference. I can understand LeBron’s frustration.” _ former player Reggie Miller on NBA TV

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“In fairness, if I was 25 I’d try to win it by myself. Not technically by myself, but I would want to be the guy. … LeBron is never going to be the guy.” _ former player Charles Barkley on NBA TV

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