LeBron James’ High School Rival Reveals Why He’s the Best Ever
December 4, 2019
The Los Angeles Lakers may win their first title since Kobe Bryant, and LeBron James will have a huge role in the process. Of course, Anthony Davis is here to give him a hand. The three-time NBA champion was once a king of his small castle in Akron. LeBron was playing at St. Vincent-St. Mary’s High School, and attracted everyone’s attention at ABCD Camp at Farleigh Dickinson High School in Teaneck, New Jersey. He went toe-to-toe with high school star Lenny Cooke. Cooke plays for the Camden Monarchs of the ABA League, and he has words of praise for his rival.
heralded as a manchild and better than LeBron, retired NBA forward Amare
Stoudemire and Portland Trail Blazers forward, Carmelo Anthony, the NBA’s
reigning Western Conference Player of the Week.
The league and
college organizations showed interest in him, and the scouts had Cooke on their radar. They had a really good reason for that.
In his junior year of high school at Northern Valley High School
in Old Tappan, NJ, Cooke averaged 25 points, 10 rebounds, two steals and two
blocks. Many predicted an incredible future for him in the NBA. According to many, his rivalry with LeBron James
changed his future.
In the final seconds of a contest, Cooke’s team took the lead and possession of the ball. LeBron stole it, scored on a fast break and his team won the game. The world first heard about the boy from Akron after this particular game, and LeBron was later featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated with the cover titled, ‘The Chosen One.’
The story of LeBron’s rival, Lenny Cooke
Cooke made a bunch of
bad decision and he was a victim of poor counsel. He also had a car accident
that almost killed him.
Instead of chasing his
dream, Cooke decided to mentor kids. In 2016, he joined forces with Schea
Cotton, and conducted a panel series that shared their story.
“I am more than basketball,” he said at the time. “I’m a dad and I want to travel the world and inspire kids.”
Cooke was also a commencement speaker at Philadelphia’s Mount Olivet Tabernacle Baptist Church. He joined Pastor Andre L. Price as a commencement ceremony speaker. Cooke was later named an assistant coach of the Atlantic City High School.
Today, he is back on
the floor as the starting power forward of the Camden Monarchs. He talked about
this during an appearance on ESPN radio.
When it comes to
LeBron, he’s got nothing but love for him. “He’s 17 years
in playing the best basketball in his career,” Cooke said. “So I mean, hell yeah! He’s
the greatest basketball player to play the game to me, ever! It takes a lot for
me to say that. I respect the game, I respect who he is, I respect how hard he
worked. He dedicated himself to the craft and he’s shown it. He came, what?
33,000 points? Moved up the scoring needle. He will break the all time leading
scoring record, I believe and he’s going to continue to win championships.”