LeBron James and Dwyane Wade know something about hostile greetings, and they aren’t worried about Kyrie Irving.
On Tuesday, Irving will return to Cleveland as a member of the Boston Celtics for the tip-off of the NBA season. It will, of course, be his first game back in Cleveland since requesting a trade from the Cavaliers in the offseason.
Like many athletes returning to a city they purposely left, Irving may be in for a hostile greeting from the Cleveland crowd, but James and Wade don’t think it will be anything close to what they received during James’ return to Cleveland after he signed with the Miami Heat.
Asked by ESPN’s Rachel Nichols if the two returns will be similar, James and Wade gave a funny, synchronized answer.
“People were throwing batteries at us,” James said of his return to Cleveland in 2010.
As noted by ESPN, according to Jason Lloyd’s book, “The Blueprint: LeBron James, Cleveland’s Deliverance, and the Making of the Modern NBA,” the atmosphere was so intense when James and the Heat went to Cleveland, the Cavs mascot wore a bulletproof vest.
“December 2,” James said to Nichols, “I will never forget that date.”
The Cavaliers are reportedly planning to show a video tribute to Irving during the game. Irving will almost certainly receive boos throughout the game, but in James and Wade’s eyes, it won’t compare to December 2, 2010.
Watch the entire segment below: