NBA legend LeBron James says it took him “a little while” to accept white people once he started attending an “all-white” Catholic school when he was 14 years old.
In the debut episode of his new HBO show “The Shop” that aired Tuesday night, the Los Angeles Lakers star said it was a complete culture shock when he started playing high school basketball for St. Vincent–St. Mary High School in his hometown of Akron.
“When I first went to the 9th grade in high school, ‘I was like, I’m not f—ing with white people,'” he said, “because I was so institutionalized growing up in the ‘hood. It’s like, ‘They don’t f–k with us, they don’t want us to succeed.’
“So I’m like, ‘I’m going to this school to play ball and that’s it. I don’t want nothing to do with white people,'” he recalled thinking at the time.
“That was my initial thoughts and my initial shock to white America, when I was 14 years old, for the first time in my life,” he added. “It took me a little while to adjust to it.”
Maverick Carter, Mr. James’ business partner and childhood friend, added that none of that mattered because everyone wound up being “best friends” and having a “great time” in the end, TMZ reported.
Mr. James also credited his white classmates for teaching him what a pantry was.
“Bread, cereal, chips, doughnuts, all that s–t is on top of the refrigerator,” he said. “When I got to high school was the first time I knew about a pantry.”
LeBron talks about the transition from his neighborhood to his catholic high school, being around all white people for the first time and finding out what a pantry is pic.twitter.com/BhIpxsC5xJ
— Rob Lopez (@r0bato) August 29, 2018
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