Heat made a trade for LeBron James’s ‘favorite player’ during NBA draft


Shabazz Napier didn’t wear a Charlotte Hornets cap for long. (Brad Penner/ USA Today)

No sooner did LeBron James laud the talents of Shabazz Napier on Thursday night than the Miami Heat made a move and landed the player from Connecticut’s national championship team.

First, James tweeted his assessment of Napier’s talents after the Charlotte Hornets took him with the 24th pick:

Not long afterward, the Heat traded its 26th overall pick and two second-rounders for Napier, who averaged 18 points and 4.9 assists his senior season with the Huskies. Will it be the first step in a rebuilding process that will convince James to stay in Miami? Napier, obviously, hopes so.

“I would love it,” Napier said. “Me and LeBron’s relationship, he’s a great guy. I’ve been to his camps. Me and him chatted a few times at his camps. It’s just a special thing. It’s just special to know that one of the best players in the world thinks about you and appreciates your talent.”

After spending most of her career in traditional print sports journalism, Cindy began blogging and tweeting, first as NFL/Redskins editor, and, since August 2010, at The Early Lead. She also is the social media editor for Sports.
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