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LeBron needs to rise up

Updated: February 6, 2006, 2:42 PM ET
By Tom Friend | ESPN The Magazine

He has Michael's ad agency, Michael's 23 and Michael's throne. So what's wrong with Michael's dunk contest?

LeBron James is copping out again, copping out on his responsibility as face (or co-face) of the league. The dunk contest wasn't beneath a young MJ, and it wasn't beneath a young Kobe, but LeBron won't risk it. Just like he won't risk a last-second shot. It's getting old.

He has ascended to this sort of MJ status -- Super Bowl commercials, appearances on national ...

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