NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Chris Paul’s All-Star weekend in New Orleans could have been awkward.
Much like LeBron James, Paul left his first NBA team in his prime, disappointing fans in the city where he rose to stardom.
Yet the gracious welcomes Paul has received around town this week show that franchise players can change teams, even under less-than-ideal circumstances, without severing ties to the communities they leave behind.
Paul says his family developed tight bonds in New Orleans while trying to help with the recovery from Hurricane Katrina, and that New Orleans will always be part of his life.
Likewise, James maintains ties to northern Ohio. James says professional decisions shouldn’t undermine personal relationships and charitable work, because the effect of helping people lasts long after one’s playing days end.