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ESPN's Over-The-Top Intro for One of LeBron's High School Games Somehow Doesn't Look Ridiculous 18 Years Later

This intro from 2002 should look like one of the more preposterous things ever aired on television. And somehow, it looks normal because it ended up being totally justified.

Just look at the players ESPN compared LeBron James to before he took the court for a — and I can't stress this part enough — high school basketball game: Wilt Chamberlain, Oscar Robertson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Michael Jordan, Shaquille O'Neal and Kobe Bryant. Oh, is that all?

I am the furthest thing that exists from a LeBron stan, but you really have to give it up for the guy who had the expectations of being one of the greatest basketball players of all-time put upon him at 17 years old and somehow surpassed them. That's truly remarkable.

Not that anyone since has had the level of attention and expectations LeBron had, but I remember when Jason Heyward was supposed to be the greatest baseball player anyone had ever laid eyes upon. And he's had a fine career, but not what people had hoped or projected. The fact LeBron was being compared to the greatest players to ever pick up a basketball and almost inarguably surpassed all but one of them is legitimately insane.

And by the way, all LeBron did in the game following that intro was score 31 points on 12-for-25 shooting with 13 rebounds and six assists in a 20-point win against the No. 1 high school team in the country. Not bad.