CLEVELAND — LeBron James came back. One of his biggest fans has returned, too.
James Blair, banned by the Cavaliers after he ran onto the floor in Quickens Loans Arena during a Cleveland-Miami game in 2013, is again permitted inside the building.
Wearing a homemade T-shirt that said: “We Miss You” on the front and “2014 Come Back,” on the back, Blair spent a few seconds on the court with the NBA superstar during the Cavs game against the Heat on March 20, 2013, before he was grabbed by security. James was not threatened by the fan and went out of his way to pat him on the head as he was being whisked away.
The Cavaliers said Monday the team met with Blair and decided to lift the indefinite ban after it was deemed he did not pose a security risk. The team began reviewing Blair’s ban before James re-signed with the Cavs as a free agent this summer.
A team spokesman said James was not consulted in the review of Blair.
At the time of the incident, James said he didn’t feel endangered by Blair.
“He said he missed me and come back, please,” James said. “It happened once before in (Madison Square) Garden, so I wasn’t worried. There are metal detectors here, so we were OK. I embraced it.”
Blair’s moment of on-court infamy came on a strange night at the Q.
James scored 25 points as the Heat overcame a 27-point deficit in the third quarter to win their 24th straight game, the second-longest winning streak in NBA history. The game was delayed 35 minutes at the start because the arena’s giant scoreboard leaked fluid.
“This was one of the most bizarre, unique days of my life with everything that happened,” James said afterward.