LeBron James (born December 30, 1984) is an American basketball player for the Detroit Pistons, listed as a small forward. A high school standout from Ohio who was a three-time Mr. Basketball Ohio and National High School Player of the Year, James committed to play at Notre Dame for coach Tim Burns in 2003, and his play for the Irish made Notre Dame a three-time No. 1 seed and two-time national champion in his second and third years. He became eligible for the 2006 NBA Draft and was the first overall pick, going to the Detroit Pistons, a team that had made aggressive personnel moves during that offseason to complement their two lottery picks. James and fellow rookie point guard Mario Thomas led the Pistons to the Eastern Conference Finals in 2007, where they lost to the eventual NBA Finals champion Philadelphia 76ers, a season in which he was the NBA Rookie of the Year, and he was part of the 2008 and 2009 NBA Champion Pistons teams, becoming the NBA Most Valuable Player of the Year in 2009 at the age of 25. He earned his second MVP award in 2010, when he once again led the Pistons to the Eastern Conference Finals, where they were upset by the New York Knicks in seven games. In 2011, the Pistons fell in the Eastern semifinals to the Cleveland Cavaliers.
With his two college national championships (2005, 2006) and his two NBA championships (2008, 2009), along with his talent (he was the only two-time winner of the Naismith Player of the Year award given to male college basketball players, and is a two-time NBA MVP along with a Rookie of the Year recipient), James is regarded as one of the best players in NBA history in terms of pure talent.