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LeBron set for Cavs season opener with closure

Updated: 2014-10-30 10:09

LeBron set for Cavs season opener with closure

Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) shoots against Dallas Mavericks forward Greg Smith (4) in the third quarter at Quicken Loans Arena, Oct 17, 2014. [Photo/Agencies]

James' return has not only made the Cavs one of the top favorites to win a title but he has spawned a financial wave for the region that is still building.

Cavs owner Dan Gilbert said James' impact on the area is immeasurable. It's created new jobs and other growth, giving the city a substantial shot in the arm as it undergoes an urban renaissance. Beyond that, James has renewed hope that Cleveland can celebrate its first pro sports championship since 1964.

There are generations of Clevelanders who have known only well-documented, nicknamed misery: The Drive, The Fumble, The Shot, The Move, and, of course, The Decision.

This is a chance to make it all feel better.

And for James and Gilbert, who have patched up their differences after an ugly separation, this is all about taking Cleveland to the top after grinding through the painful times.

"For us, the thing that drives us the most is delivering this for the fans of Cleveland," Gilbert said. "It will be 51 years, and that's what the emotion is really about that. Delivering for them, and hoping that day comes whether it's this year, next year or the following year, whenever it comes, and we believe it will."

A deafening roar will welcome James onto the court when he's introduced as the last member of Cleveland's starting lineup. It may take several minutes for Cleveland fans to settle into their seats.

James, on the other hand, won't be able to enjoy the celebration accompanying his comeback.

Not now.

"I wish I could," he said. "I haven't had a moment to soak in anything I've done. It continues to go and I continue to live in the moment. I think after I'm done playing I'll be able to look back on a lot of great moments and tomorrow will be another one of those moments."

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