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Should LeBron Change His Jersey Number To Honor Bill Russell?

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Should LeBron change his jersey number in order to honor Bill Russell? The NBA decided to retire the number six league wide but LeBron is grandfathered in. (Photo: Frank Franklin II/AP)

Should LeBron Change His Jersey Number To Honor Bill Russell?

The short answer is yes. In case you missed it, the NBA has announced they are retiring the number six league-wide in an effort to honor Bill Russell. Players that already wear the number six are considered to be grandfathered in (that list can be seen here). The most notable name on that list is LeBron James. The real question is, will LeBron change his jersey to honor Bill Russell?

LeBron has only ever worn the numbers 23 and 6. In fact, James has worn both numbers with the Lakers. He switched to number six this past season. The obvious answer here is reverting back to 23 but LeBron could easily opt to do the Mariano Rivera route with Bill Russell.

For those that don’t remember, MLB retired Jackie Robinson’s number and Rivera was grandfathered in with the number 42 with the Yankees. It’s within LeBron’s rights to keep that number if he shall choose.

It also may not matter for long. LeBron is in the final year of his contract with the Lakers. If LeBron leaves Los Angeles after this season, he won’t be able to pick the number six with his new team. Don’t worry, Laker fans have probably already come up with that excuse when they try to convince you he’s never leaving.

Time will tell what LeBron chooses to do in order to honor Bill Russell. Knowing him, it will likely be the wrong thing. Change the number. Donate to the Bill Russell foundation. Something. Anything. The world is watching LeBron.

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