LeBron James has made his decision with the four-time NBA MVP opting to make a dramatic return to the Cleveland Cavaliers, posting a message that simply read: ‘I’m coming home’.

It comes after a protracted courtship in recent days between several teams including the Miami Heat, where he has spent the past four years and won two titles, Cleveland – where had seven years as a rookie and reached one Finals – and other fringe hopefuls including Phoenix and Houston.

Announcing the move in an interview with Sports Illustrated, he stressed a move back to his Ohio roots was paramount, along with the chance to illustrate that there was a future in the region.

“In Northeast Ohio, nothing is given,” he said. “Everything is earned. You work for what you have. I’m ready to accept the challenge. I’m coming home.”

James’ move is likely to spark a domino effect throughout the league with long-time Heat running mates Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh still to affirm their own futures, with the latter likely to accept a max-level deal from the Rockets.

Cleveland, who have shown little interest in bringing back Great Britain forward Luol Deng, have already agreed a contract extension with All Star guard Kyrie Irving.

Nothing, though, will top the return of The King.

“Welcome Home @KingJames,” said Cavs owner Dan Gilbert, whose public admonishment of James following his prior exit is thought to have complicated the move back. 

“I am excited for the fans and people of Cleveland and Ohio. No fans and people deserve a winner more than them.”

James stressed that there was no rancour with the Heat. It was all personal, he underlined. Yet with only four players under contract, and Bosh ready to depart, the 2014 Finals runners-up are facing a freefall with the exit of the greatest star.

For the Cavs, James’ reunion could not feel sweeter.

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