President Obama said he could relate to the National Basketball Association Champion Miami Heat, as the squad visited the White House Tuesday.
“Sometimes, it feels like they’re still fighting for a little respect — I can relate to that,” Obama said.
LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and company made the trip to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. for the second straight year, an annual pilgrimage for the NBA champions.
The Heat bested the San Antonio Spurs in a seven game series in last year’s NBA finals.
Obama, a Chicago Bulls fan, said he would root for the Heat except when they played his hometown team.
The Bulls, without superstar Derrick Rose, are just 17-19 so far this year. In comparison, the Heat are 27-10.
Obama joked that there was a “unifying sense” about the Heat around the NBA, alluding to their villain status outside of Miami.
For his part, Obama said he was surprised how excited James was to visit the White House last year.
“LeBron was so pumped up,” Obama said. “I thought he was going to give me a hug and knock me over like the guy in the SportsCenter [segment] who hit the half-court shot.”