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LeBron requested to switch to clear mask by NBA


MIAMI (AP) - LeBron James dispensed with his menacing black mask at the NBA's request and switched to a clear protective cover for the Miami Heat's game Saturday against the Orlando Magic.

The black mask made its debut Thursday in James' first game since he broke his nose. He said he received word from league officials Friday that they wanted him to instead wear something that would allow opponents to see his face.

"It's not a league rule, but it's the league's request that you don't wear the black one," James said before Saturday's game. "The reasons they told me didn't make sense to me, but I'm just a player. I will abide by the request."

Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said NBA Commissioner Adam Silver spoke Friday with Nick Arison, son of the team owner, about the matter. James said he didn't want to make a big issue of it.

"I'm good with the NBA," James said with a smile. "I am not against the NBA. I had a request, and I fulfilled it."

Teammate Dwyane Wade said he warned James the league would give the black mask a thumbs-down.

"I told him after Thursday's game, 'You have fun, because it ain't happening the next game,'" Wade said. "It was fun. A lot of attention, a lot of T-shirts are going to be made, a lot of Instagram posts. Now we move on to something else."

James agreed that the black mask was a marketing success, with feedback he received universally positive. He said he may give the mask to charity so it can be auctioned off.

"Everyone loved it," James said. "I got stuff, from 'You look very menacing,' to 'You look like a superhero,' to 'You look amazing.' A little bit of everything. No one told me it was terrible."

Not even league officials.

"I think they loved it as well," James said.

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ariver31112 March 01 2014 at 10:30 PM

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Imagine in this day and age someone wanting to come to work in "blackface"

Flag Reply +2 rate up
nascar20155 March 02 2014 at 12:52 AM

check him out in the next game, he's going to be wearing the same mask that kanye wore at his concert, you cant get any more stupid than that!!!!

Flag Reply +3 rate up
spokajo March 01 2014 at 11:22 PM

The "Lone Ranger" rides again!!! "HI OH Silver !!!!".

Flag Reply +2 rate up
dtsv180 March 01 2014 at 11:33 PM

By him abiding by the request shows he has class. He is not fighting the little fights.

Flag Reply +4 rate up
landslowrance March 02 2014 at 12:06 AM

Now everyone is going to want one for Halloween.

Flag Reply +1 rate up
kevinbgood621 March 01 2014 at 11:29 PM

I'm Batman !

Flag Reply +1 rate up
george March 01 2014 at 11:22 PM

how do i get one?

Flag Reply +2 rate up
bbnpl4545 March 01 2014 at 10:41 PM

When i first saw it i thought he was trying out for a new Batman movie or something

Flag Reply +5 rate up
Ron March 01 2014 at 11:54 PM

"But I'm Batman!"

Flag Reply +1 rate up
pmbalele March 02 2014 at 12:20 AM

If it were a White NBA player wearing a Black mask, it would have been called racial insensitivity. I don't know why NBA allowed this guy to wear a black mask. People invite racial tension for nothing. This is one of them. Dumb decision.

Flag Reply +3 rate up
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