LeBron James Surprises Duquesne Hoops Team With Nike LeBron 21s for NCAA Tournament

The Los Angeles Lakers star has a special connection to the Duquesne men’s hoops team, specifically its head coach Keith Dambrot. As pointed out by CBS Sports, Dambrot coached James for two years while he attended St. Vincent-St. Mary High School in Akron, Ohio.

But the connections didn’t stop there. James’ former high school classmate/teammate Dru Joyce III is now the associate head coach for the Duquesne men’s básquet team and is expected to take over for Dambrot upon his retirement this year.

Dambrot spoke about coaching a young James in a 2023 interview with Sky Sports.

“The guy picked up on things immediately. Three games into his freshman year I thought he had a chance at being a pro and I think by his sophomore year we all knew he wasn’t going to college,” he told the outlet.

Dambrot credited LeBron with having “resurrected” his own career. “He made me a college coach again. Typical of him, everything he touches turns to gold,” he said.

The Dukes ultimately defeated BYU 71-67 in the first round of March Madness. Thursday’s game marked the team’s first NCAA Tournament appearance since 1977 and its first win in the tournament since 1969. James congratulated the Dukes for the historic victory.

“AYYYYYYYEEEEE!!! First tournament win in 55 years!” he wrote on X. “@CoachDambrot 🐐 @DuqMBB 👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾. Keep it going.”

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