By Tom Withers
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
CLEVELAND _ LeBron James is hoping to motivate kids by telling his own inspiring story.
The NBA superstar is co-producing a half-hour TV series called “Becoming,” which will showcase the journeys of some of today’s top athletes. The pilot focuses on James, his struggles growing up in a single-parent home in Akron, Ohio and his rise to become one of the world’s best basketball players.
The show premieres Oct. 26 on Disney XD. It’s co-produced by Springhill Productions, James’ company operated by close friend and business partner Maverick Carter, and ESPN Films.
James says he was inspired as a kid by Michael Jordan, Deion Sanders and Allen Iverson.
“Sports and athletes were my inspiration growing up,” he said. “When I learned that they had some of the same struggles and challenges I did, it made everything seem possible. That’s what ‘Becoming’ is all about.”
James, who re-signed with the Cavaliers this summer, has always had a strong connection with kids, a bond that’s grown as he became a father.
The pilot includes rarely-seen footage of James playing AAU basketball and at St. Vincent-St. Mary High School.