The Return: Cleveland welcomes LeBron back - WSVN-TV - 7NEWS Miami Ft. Lauderdale News, Weather, Deco

The Return: Cleveland welcomes LeBron back

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(AP Photo/Lori Shepler, File). FILE - In this Dec. 25, 2009 file photo, Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James reacts during the second half against the Los Angeles Lakers in an NBA basketball game in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Lori Shepler, File). FILE - In this Dec. 25, 2009 file photo, Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James reacts during the second half against the Los Angeles Lakers in an NBA basketball game in Los Angeles.
(AP Photo/Phil Long). Cleveland Cavaliers basketball fans celebrate in front of the house of LeBron James, in Bath, Ohio, after learning of James' decision to sign as a free-agent with the Cavaliers, Friday, July 11, 2014. (AP Photo/Phil Long). Cleveland Cavaliers basketball fans celebrate in front of the house of LeBron James, in Bath, Ohio, after learning of James' decision to sign as a free-agent with the Cavaliers, Friday, July 11, 2014.
(AP Photo/Tony Dejak, File). FILE - In this Feb. 17, 2012, file photo, a Cleveland Cavaliers holds a sign and yells as Miami Heat's LeBron James is introduced before andanNBA basketball game against Cavaliers in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak, File). FILE - In this Feb. 17, 2012, file photo, a Cleveland Cavaliers holds a sign and yells as Miami Heat's LeBron James is introduced before andanNBA basketball game against Cavaliers in Cleveland.
(AP Photo/Tony Dejak, File). FILE - In this March 11, 2007, file photo, Cleveland Cavaliers' LeBron James (23) jumps high toward the basket against Indiana Pacers' Troy Murphy (3) during the second quarter in an NBA basketball game in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak, File). FILE - In this March 11, 2007, file photo, Cleveland Cavaliers' LeBron James (23) jumps high toward the basket against Indiana Pacers' Troy Murphy (3) during the second quarter in an NBA basketball game in Cleveland.
(AP Photo/Akron Beacon Journal, Karen Schiely) (AP Photo/Akron Beacon Journal, Karen Schiely)
By The Associated Press

CLEVELAND (AP) - LeBron James is coming back to Cleveland. Forget about all those fans who burned jerseys when he left - the city is ready to welcome its NBA superstar home.

Within hours of his announcement Friday that he was leaving Miami to return to the Cleveland Cavaliers, fans celebrated in the streets and an electronic billboard with James' image lit up the side of a building.

James explained in a Sports Illustrated essay that being near his hometown in northeast Ohio was a big factor in his decision. "I always believed that I'd return to Cleveland and finish my career there. I just didn't know when. After the season, free agency wasn't even a thought. But I have two boys and my wife, Savannah, is pregnant with a girl. I started thinking about what it would be like to raise my family in my hometown."

Take a look at how Cleveland is celebrating.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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