LeBron Named Sports Illustrated’s Sportsman Of The Year

NBA.com staff reports

Sports IllustratedHeat star LeBron James picked up his first Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year award on Monday, becoming the first Heat player to grab the award since teammate Dwyane Wade took home honors in 2006. Lee Jenkins‘ story provides a great insight into LeBron’s banner year, during which he was named MVP and powered Miami’s run to its first title since ’06, ending years of disappointment and failed expectations for the superstar. He also won Finals MVP and was a member of the U.S. team that won the gold medal at the London Olympics.

Jenkins recounts much of the Heat’s ride to the championship stage with insightful interviews from James’ teammates (Udonis Haslem, Wade and others), rivals (Paul George, Frank Vogel) as well as the man who built Miami’s now-superteam, Pat Riley. It’s a must-read piece on the man who, in Sports Illustrated‘s opinion, captivated the sports stage more than anyone else in 2012.


  1. Beverly says:

    No one deserves this more than LeBron!! Congradulations .
    Much Love to you and your family.
    From MsBevBlack in NC, Gooooo Heat !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. k says:

    Congrts Lbj is my idol,my suparstar.
    Go Heat Go

  3. JC says:

    It all good but he is not the only one on the team but always remember he will never be like my man Kobe he is the best so I don’t no why people is hating on my boy just keep an mind who got the rings in he will get more TRUST AND BELIEVE KOBE # ONE FAN

  4. anglo says:


  5. anglo says:

    congrats KING JAMES

  6. You deserved it lebron you are my idol don’t listen to those people who don’t like you are the best 5 MORE RINGS you are the best those people are jealous no offense but u deserved it

  7. Dametrius says:

    well deserved! Dang why cant haters stop hating? the man is a great player and person. good job LeBron he put in the work now he gets the rewards thats how it works

  8. Jack says:

    LeBron is the best allround player ever to play the game of basketball. this is just another amazing award that he can add to back it up. well done lebron! lets get that 2nd championship:))

  9. baller1991 says:

    I love when the announcer just screams,


  10. HEAT repeat LAKERS joke says:

    congrats to my idol. well deserve, he earned it so hard, the elusive title that he wants, plus he was crowned as the finals MVP and 3rd time MVP, and won a gold medal at london olympics, haters gonna hate, poor guys, you all look morons now saying he don’t deserve it, hahahahahaha

  11. HypeBeast says:

    nope kobe wasnt Sports Illustrated Sportsman of any Year


    As much as I don’t like lebron, I have to admit, he deserves this. I didn’t want him winning any rings though

  13. chicitymartian says:

    see lebron make players better dats what separates him from kobe kobe just hawgs da ball he dont even make players better if shaq was never on da lakers kobe will only have 3 rings he better thank shaq

  14. RondoTheDramaQueen says:

    Congrats LeBron! He is making goals and accomplishing them, while the haters are doing what? Sitting behind a computer screen full of salt. Extra salty!

  15. Nmadel says:

    Garbage. Athlete of the year, sure. Sportsman of the year? I think not, LBJ is a sore loser and a pompous punk. He does not deserve this award.

  16. Fo Real says:

    That ring is huge!!!

  17. B. Brown says:

    A job well done, congratulation hope you have many more awards to come.

  18. JERICO says:

    my goodness they made a wrong choice.. the athlete should be respectable and not involving in any organization against JESUS CHRIST..

  19. ZBOFORMVP says:

    the bandwagon is strong on this page

  20. los locos says:

    you are iluminati that why you win that

  21. Dennis kids says:

    Congratulation lebron your always better good .. God blezz Hope you will always ok champ

  22. Jigear says:

    Congratulations “King James”. Some people say your just an average player, hmmm? I don’t think so man. Average player can’t break many NBA history records or make a new record, LBJ broke NBA records and also makes new record for himself. The King taking a different path from what MJ and Kobe does. He’s not a clutch player and everyone knows that. But if you watch him, the way he was playing on the court , you’ll be amaze. The facilitator that what everyone calls him. He will kill you in every corner of the court, every plays and that’s what makes other coaches job more harder. You got another accomplishment that you can add on your archive Mr. LBJ, thumbs up!!! Congratulations..

  23. realtalk says:

    Novak Djokovic > LbJ

    He had a huge family problems (grandfather past away, father heart attack and in hospital), but he still managed to keep his well deserved #1 + finish the year in style by winning Masters Cup Finals with all victories and defeating Federer 2-0.
    This is his 2nd year in a row to be #1, Novak is the man.

  24. Fan of the game says:

    if LBJ reads this just know you deserve this award for tackling on the pressures of wasteless media and focusing on what counts; your career, team , family and the game.

    REMINDER: this is the 2012 award so its all bout his performance for this year so any hating and irrelevant remarks is also another reason why he gets this award. so what else can you say to this man “oh get more rings” well every great starts with one and end with either more or in the bottom pit of their ego.

  25. TJ says:

    First n last tym hes gonna win it……………

  26. Sidiki says:

    Yo fellows, Lebron deserves the honors. He goes down in history as one of the best players ever. Doesnt matter whether he gets five or six rings during his tenure, he is a super star. Live with it!

  27. Hahah says:

    Hahaha Kobe gets his ring not because of him that because of her teammates like oneal hahah

  28. DW3 fan says:

    Very well deserved. Cheers to the road ahead to not 3… not 4… not 5… not 6…. not 7 more.. lol, but seriously, no matter how many more (hopefully many more), this year has been awesome for basketball and Lebron (and Wade.. and Bosh and Haslem) deserve a few more championship parades.

  29. Sage says:

    sorry, but this is a joke. In a year where olympic records were broken, this belonged to either phelps or bolt.

  30. goHEAT says:

    nc 1 LBJ

  31. usbuck says:

    I hope and pray that LeBron doesn’t read our nonsense! But if you do~~You’re the Best!

  32. KOBEBean says:

    Well not surprised even if i really hate him but we can’t deny the fact that he’s the best most dominant player in the nba now..

  33. BJLfan says:

    Does Sports Illustrated have the “Quitter of the Year” award ? I am sure he will win that too ! 😀

    • Wayne from TO says:

      It’s interesting to hear people speak without objectivity. I am a fan of LBJ. I am a bigger fan of Usain Bolt (I am Jamaican), and I am a bigger fan of Soccer than Basketball. Any of the above players coulld have won sportsman of the year and I am sure they wil be crowned sportsman of the year on several platforms. Love people or hate them… let’s show some respect for talent. Congrats LBJ!

    • robbie says:

      ..and now hum to sounds of Atlantic Star’s ‘YOU DESERVE THE BEST!’

    • hluna says:

      or crybaby of the year…

  34. BRON BRON!! says:

    Congrats Lebron. Keep doing your thang and block out all the negativity. You’re a one of a kind player. Its an honor to watch you play.

  35. Dale Cooper says:

    He did have a hell of a year. I was only a little kid when MJ played, but I’m glad I get to watch this guy and can actually appreciate his greatness. Have felt that way about Kobe and feel that way about Durant, despite the fact that he’s standing in James’s (very large) shadow right now.

    Man I love basketball.

  36. The truth says:

    Look at everyone hating. He’s the best in the nba. He won a nba title, a gold medal, an mvp and a finals mvp. He’s a superstar. Thats all there is to it.

  37. ian says:

    congrats king…

  38. H to the Z says:

    Congrats Lebron. You’re the best! When it’s all said and done you will be the G.O.A.T!

  39. congratsbron says:

    congrats LeBron…..well deserve

  40. Alice W says:

    Congrats to LeBron. I’ve been watching him since he entered the league, and I love his play and his attitude. I’m so happy he finally got on a team that can complement his talents, with a coach that knows how to guide and inspire his team. This is the perfect ending to a great year.

  41. lbj123084 says:

    lebron james is the best basketball player ever and 4 all those kobe idiots u can maybe compare kobe 2 darko milicic

    • makdiuckkk says:

      ok lebron is the best player right now, but hes far from the greatest of all time, not even in the top 10. and comparing kobe, a top 5 all time player to the biggest draft bust in NBA history? hahaha, not only are you a fanboy but ur also an idiot.

      • LA.fanboy says:

        Okay so can you compare their ages? Lol he isnt in the best of all time cause he entered nba 6 years after kobe did. Grow man grow. Youre a piece of joke.

  42. lucien says:

    congrats LBJ ur de best in de leaugue right now will always b a fan and i do wish u more success

  43. Kiddo says:

    I’m not a LBJ’s big fans but he deserve to have the title. His achievements are fantastic this year. What I like about him, his thought about losing from dallas at 10-11 makes he never give up and put on easy thought on the other team. Even, he always show better performance on this reguler season. Congrats, Big Man!

  44. kobeisthebest says:

    kobe is the best he should have won the season but lebron ruined it

  45. KOBE says:

    he doesn’t deserve it. last year lebron was better . he got more abilities last year. last year he got flopbility. (remember Bulls series, Dallas series, celtics series and knicks series??? he showed his supreme flopbility) this years he lost it. why should someone who lost one of his ability be sportman of the year?

  46. AusieCeltic says:

    BIll Russel looks better with 11 rings on so u can all put a sock in it.

  47. Trevor Dylan says:

    Didn’t he exit without shaking Orlando’s hands when he lost to them? That is good sportsmanship? Wow! Seems more like a sore loser 2 me!

  48. crazyc502 says:

    this ur thing lebron james let go het keep doin what u do best

  49. Sport Bar says:

    This can’t be real: in the year of the Olympic Games, with athletes like Bolt (first one in history to win 100, 200 and 4×100 two Olympics in a row) and Phelps (all time record of gold medals), in the year Leo Messi will break the all time record of goals in official soccer games, LeBron gets the “Sportsman of the Year” for winning the NBA title after a halved season?
    American magazines are too biased to be taken seriously!

    • AJ Mills says:

      66 is not half of 82. (Also, who cares about shortened seasons.)

      Lebron won a gold meda tool.

      And for all of the other great athletes you mentioned, their accomplishments span multiple years.

      In 2012–a year in which he barely took any time off–LBJ won all the top honors in his sport; how you could think he isn’t deserving is beyond me. American magazines may be biased, but that doesn’t mean they don’t get it right some times.

      • Sport Bar says:

        LeBron won a gold medal? Bolt won THREE, Phelps won FOUR! When will you finally open your eyes and realize NBA is just a national championship?? Nobody cares out of US! You can’t count it as a world-wide achievement!

      • AJ Mills says:

        If nobody cares about basketball outside the US, why are you on this site?

      • Fo Real says:

        @sport bar

        You do relize the pinnacle of basketball is the NBA right??? LOL winning an olympic gold is practicaly routine for USA

        Even Man Ginobili will tell you that winning an NBA ring is what Basketball is all about

    • bitter hater detected says:

      Not disregarding the accomplishments of the other athletes, LeBron had the best year because he overcame all the hate and adversity from the media and people like you to land himself a triple crown (the highest possible achivement for a basketball player in a single year) in his sport. He elevated himself from already great to legendary. “Sportsman of the Year” is an understatement for the year he had.

      • Sport Bar says:

        So now you count the hate in the parameters for a sport performance? Come on, that really means you are left with no valid points to make! I don’t hate LeBron, I think he’s one of the best in his role in the history of the game, but there are people who did much more, especially looking at the Olympics.

    • D says:

      Lebron won more than just a title. He was the MVP, Finals MVP and won an olympic gold medal(Which he played extremely well in). Messi has not gotten any awards and he has not broken the record yet. Also this is for sportman of the YEAR. Both Bolt and Phelps have completed these accomplishments over two years.

      • Sport Bar says:

        Just in this year, Bolt had three times the gold medals of LeBron, Phepls four times. Messi has not gotten any awards? Are you serious?? With Barcelona, he got the National Cup, and as individual awards, he got Best Player in the Spanish League, Top scorer in the Spanish League (with all time record), Golden Boot in Europe (all time record), Onze d’or as best player in Europe. Is that enough? You should check before saying something like this…

      • YoYo says:

        LBJ is the best, there is not one aspect of the game of basketball that he cannot dominate in, and in the past year he won every major accomplishment there is to win and top it off with winning a gold medal…I don’t think there is anything else he can do…Please tell me what else he gotta do to “deserve” it….

  50. PSYCHO says:

    theres a lot more of where that came from!

  51. locib6 says:

    stop griping Don’t Click My Name

  52. my opinion says:

    seriously guys, the only other awards/titles he didn’t win were the rookie of the year, the dunk comp and the three point shoot out at the all star weekend, geez, give credit where credit’s due… yes Messi (Barca didn’t win the league title or uefa champs)and others have had great years, but Lebron more than deserved this one…. and the constant comparison of this absolutely phenomenal athlete/basketball player (Lebron) to the arguably the greatest ever (Jordan) is also tiring…

    • pakyaw says:

      what the hell u talkin about? he won rookie of the year …you fool

      • AJ Mills says:

        He didn’t win rookie of the year in 2012 is what “my opinion” means–just another way of saying that he won everything he possibly could … well, except DPOY, and one could make a case for that too.

  53. Christian Vercammen says:

    Lebron is amazing. He’s the best. Before I found Charles, the mailman and off course Air Jordan fantastic.. As I loved to see Wilt Chamberlain. 100 points in a game!
    NBA thanks you for this great sport


  54. DHAM says:


  55. Gabriel17 says:

    Congratulations Lebron!
    No doubt best player in the league… Hail the King!
    You deserves all your success…. Continue your hardwork to get your 2nd ring…



  57. FloRin says:

    Congratulations LeBron James. You are best in sports !!! And I think you’re also the best athlete in history.

  58. Kobe4ever says:

    i’m obviously a Kobe Bryant Fan but I do not hate leBron because he is a fantastic player. There’s no doubt that LBJ deserves to receive that award. Congrats Man…

  59. FRANK says:

    The record for Messi is 40 years ago, and he played incredible year.
    Lebron had wonderful year too, he won MVP,MVP Finals, NBA Championship, Gold OG and probably MVP OG.
    Bolt was amazing too with 3 fantastic gold medals and incredible times.

    Umm hard to tell, but Lebron is good choice in my opinion 😉

  60. Miguel Vieira says:

    With tihs type a defense or atack moves and kind of players any Hakeem, Drexler, Cliff Robinson, Payton, Kemp, Reggie, Grant hill, Penny, Allan Houston, Sprewell, Larry Jonhson, Mugsy, Dirk, Duncan, David Robinson, Ewing, Mullin, Smith, Richmond, Shack, MacCale, Parish, Worthy,Pippen…and others, would be the best ever. This people are crazy, but they all need to sail an image 4 the big Bucks. Lebron is defenetly the most dominante player at the moment, but if u guys compare times and timmings, defensive or atacking rules, nowadays it´s easier to play, plus, the players are much much wourse than ever. Things would be diferent if any of this actual players would play against guys like Kareem, DR.J, Bird, Barkley, Magic, Bill Russel, Wilt Chamberlain and of course the incomparable MJ, the best the world ever seen, they all probably be better, plus, like ouncle Drew says:”…fundamentals…”
    Oh, i forgot, time is changing…for what?
    Lebron deserves to win like any winner, but i believe in Durant

    • bigwes95 says:

      but compared to what chamberlin went through in he 60’s, where he was fouled so much more than what everyone nowadays starts whining about getting no calls. i remember seeing the photo shoot of bird, magic, and jordan for the dream team and when magic put his hand on jordan, jordan said something like ” you can’t touch me, that’s a foul” MJ didn’t nearly get fouled as much as people think he did and the 90’s are usually considered the worst era of basketball, the 60’s were definitely the hardest when you had to go up against the hardest team in the league atleast 5 times a year and there weren’t nearly as many fouls called( why do you think people last so much longer now than the 80’s and before, because the 90’s are hte worst era and the softest/weakest)

      • Miguel Vieira says:

        Lebron is the greatest at the moment, not the best ever, he cannot be, it´´s a matter of mentallity.
        Despite all that, let me tell u something. Take a look at jordan´s footage and you´ll see that everytime he got to the rim everybody grabed him.

  61. erica says:

    He is a the greatest and he deserves every good thing that comes to him…Fan from Cleveland.

  62. zabuza says:

    congrats Lbj next time visit here in manila….. :))

  63. chicomillan says:

    I live in miami, and i love the fact that he is in my team now, but if he decides to leave miami later on in his career because of whatever reasons, i will respect that and always see him like what he is “BEST IN BASKETBALL NOW”. I’ve always had the same thoughts about him, even when he was in Clevenland. Learn to appreciate the skills as a player and human being and dont just root for your local players. Also understand that for them its a business, and im sure they make the best decisions for their own lifes like we all do every day, and we all have to respect that.

  64. Kristian says:

    Well deserved he really matured last season.

    It’s a shame there still some people have a grudge over him leaving Cleveland still. He know’s he done wrong with the way he left but in the end Cleveland was not getting it done, and I don’t see why people hate on someone who makes a move to try and better his future.

    We do the same thing sometimes in the workplace if it’s leaving for a better job for other reasons. Hating him because he left Cleveland in my opinion is not fair enough reason and just childishly holding a meaningless grudge.

  65. newyorksteelo says:

    Well deserved. Congrats. Sorry to take the away the shine for a moment here though, but there is one thing I would like to add . Le’bron James should not win the MVP award this year. Carmelo Anthony should. Carmelo has not only changed his game for the better of the team, he’s also made the Knicks better, point blank period end of story lol. 🙂 Go Knicks!

    • Kay says:

      And you’re calling that out 15 games into the season? Let’s see what happens with New York’s recored at the end of the season, especially when Amare comes back.

    • Fo Real says:

      to early for that call bud! still 80% of the season left lol

  66. Sachin says:

    Congratulations Lebron, very well deserved award. I wish you success for many more years to come.

  67. Dr. O'Neal says:

    he’ll leave Miami after his contract expires. trust me.

    • Dean Wells says:

      Your point? as a player he has the right to go wherever he wants to go when his contract is over, its called a contract so you can do what you want after it is over. He doesnt have to stay anywhere when he isnt in a contract.

  68. JT3 says:

    his nickname should be the joker. he is a JOKE, trader and will always be a villain. ESPN, SI all want to make money off him and push this bum to be the next Michael Jordan, he is a good player can’t deny that but, he does not have the heart or determination Jordan had. Plus no clutch jean. Just saying. lebron is a average player. nothing special.

    • LA.fanboy says:

      You mad bro?Lol so you think its his fault why he left cleveland? The management didnt even supported him with sidekicks, whom he can depend to. Unlike the lakers whick is superstacked. Move on poor cleveland fan. So immature

    • dude says:

      you stupid man he is the best player right now and has more determination than you troll

    • Frank says:

      Yes, because you personally know LeBron and can inform us all on his “heart and determination.”

      You and anyone else who agrees with you truly are not fans of basketball. You have your Michael Jordan or Kobe Bryant posters hanging on the walls in your bedroom and you think you know basketball.

      LeBron an average player…please.

      I think you lived up to the nick-name (JOKER) you gave LeBron with your ill-informed comments.

      Do yourself, and everyone else who was unfortunate enough to read your comment, a favor and go watch a few more NBA games and learn a thing or two about the game before you infect us with your dribble. (Pun not intended)

    • hluna says:

      Amen! That’s what I’ve been saying for years!

  69. FranTheMan says:

    @the truth
    Most ridiculous comment i’ve ever read. First off he’s not your bro. Second them ‘three losers’ are arguably the all time greatest in their respective fields. Third LeBron may do some charity work but he doesnt dedicate his career to it,he’s a professional baskeball player,thats his career.Fourth, Barca wouldn’t be half as succesful as they are without Messi,check how many games he’s won for them, and I guarantee you every member of their squad would agree he makes the team better. Fifth Bolt led the Jamaican team to gold in the relay this summer. Sixth Federer plays a predominately individual sport. Not begrudging LeBron the award at the same time, broaden your mind truth!

  70. Jay says:


  71. Hero says:


    Yes, but you see, Messi is not in any strange, religious group like LBJ is. It’s all about power. That’s what I think.

  72. the truth says:

    like a king, well deserved bro. messi? federer? bolt? cmon even i deserve the award more than these three losers. lebron is a great person, he dedicates his career doing community service and acting as a role model for many young children. He plays hard and make his teammates better (unlike messi, federer, or bolt). He deserves it

    • Frank says:

      Another example of an idiot floating around on the interwebs.

    • makdiuckkk says:

      um roger federer is a tennis player and Usain Bolt runs track… they dont have teammates.

      • Dommmmmmmmmmmmmmy says:

        Federer.. doubles (yes he has played it) , Bolt, relay race.. both got team mates 😉

    • Gordon A says:

      What is the point in you saying this when you clearly don’t watch football (soccer) as Messi is a phenomenal individual player but also a brilliant team player. Lebron James is deserving of this award seeing as its an American magazine and he was clearly the best sportsman in all of America and possibly the world but if you watched football then you would clearly see that Messi is a once in a lifetime sort of player. To explain to you in easier terms, Messi is on the verge of or past being the Michael Jordan of football. Now tell me that isn’t warranted for Sportsmen of the Year.

      • Fo Real says:


        well said bro , im not a soccer fan but I love watching Messi play.. he is a BEAST

  73. Trevor Dylan says:

    This is a joke! I sent the magazine an email about my views on this. It is absurd. By the way that is a bad picture of him. I know he is an ugly older looking buy. But his face looks really old and bad!

  74. Incubus_aw says:

    This is way should be categories. How many sports we have on the planet?? What about guys like Messi? His about to break a record that has about 20 year. Federer winning wimbledom. Vettel on f1. Bolt and is medals??? . . . LeBron James??? Come on??? the word of sports is not just U.S!!

    • Adam says:

      Ya Messi may have been my choice and the record he is about to break for goals in a calendar year is about 36 years old, not 20. He is an incredible player and could have easily won this award. LeBron is a fine choice though. The Olympic gold is probably what put him over the top. What a great year from LeBron, can’t complain.

    • jose machado says:

      right said but this magazine it´s from US, right? LOL i´m not american, and i don´t live in US, i don´t mind, i don´t care.

    • Krishawn-MIA says:

      you have a great point but Lebron won almost every award a player could’ve in his particualr sport

    • Dieter says:

      I ain’t a Heat or Lebron fan, but he was truly amazin last year. Federer had better years, Vettel ain’t one of the best ever in F1, … Lebron had to carry his team all the way. Ok he had some great players on his team who also deserve credit like Bosh, Battier, … but Lebron had one of the best seasons for any player in history of the NBA, and he was the leader of his team… can’t say anyone in sports deserved it more than Lebron, I really can’t. What Messi’s doing this year is also great, but like some people said, he didn’t win anything and he didn’t have the pressure that Lebron had for the last couple years. Lebron won the MVP, won a championship, won the finals MVP, won a gold medal, lead his team under an immense pressure, and played like one of the greats… C’mon just give him the credit that he deserves. You don’t have to be a fan of the guy to admit he had an unbelievable season.

  75. JT3 says:

    what a joke.

  76. NUFF SAID says:

    Congrats LBJ…. Now give us another RING…………… Let’s Go HEAT!!!!

  77. jaison says:

    congatz!!! that mah mvp!!

  78. Lady L says:

    Congrats Big Bron!

  79. diddy says:

    Keep up the hard work King James.

  80. BP says:

    Congratulations James.

  81. lbj6 says:

    well deserved, just like what mj accomplished in 1992.. exactly 20 years ago..

  82. Joseph Cyrus says:


  83. Nice says:

    Lebron is an amazing player/person he definitely deserved this

  84. KunJayMaster says:

    If anyone deserves it, it’s him.

  85. lbjfan says:

    dude looks good with that ring on, ill tell ya

    congrats lebron, keep ‘er goin

  86. Very well deserved… Congrats LeBron!


  87. KingLBjBoy says:

    Goat Congrats

  88. LS says:

    is anyone surprised?? media and sportscasters have touted lebron as the hero of b’ball since whenever. boring…

  89. Frank says:

    Congratulations. Well deserved.

    • Ivan says:

      This gentleman overcame all obstacles having the whole country against him. Brave man! well deserved, keep winning titles