Earlier this week, before the Cleveland Cavaliers landed in New York City to take on the Knicks, it was revealed that LeBron James and some of his teammates decided they wouldn’t be staying at the team’s hotel during their stay in Manhattan. The reason why wasn’t made crystal clear to begin with, but many were quick to assume it had something to do with the hotel being branded by Donald Trump since James had supported Hillary Clinton for president.
However, when talking to the media on Wednesday, James said he wasn’t trying to make a statement by staying elsewhere. In his words, it was simply his “personal preference.”
It’s just my personal preference,” James said. “At the end of the day, I hope he’s one of the best presidents ever for all of our sake – my family, for all of us. But it’s just my personal preference. It would be the same if I went to a restaurant and decided to eat chicken and not steak.”
For what it’s worth, James mentioned this is the first time in his career that he chose to stay somewhere other than the team’s primary hotel on the road. Cavaliers head coach Tyronn Lue also admitted it is not necessarily normal for this to happen. Nevertheless, James and the teammates who joined him stayed at a hotel close enough to Trump SoHo so they could all take the same bus to shootaround at Madison Square Garden.
The Cavaliers aren’t the only NBA team to stay at other hotels, either. According to ESPN, the Milwaukee Bucks, Memphis Grizzlies and Dallas Mavericks have each decided to distance themselves from the president-elect by staying in different hotels this season.