Those who watched the Halloween clash between the Los Angeles Lakers and Houston Rockets at home found themselves befuddled when the camera pointed at LeBron James in the second quarter.
The shot unveiled a mystery fellow sitting behind James, who looked exactly like the four-time NBA champion. The burly man wore a dark round hat and grey clothes, reaching for a handful of an in-game snack, probably popcorn.
Jokes of James discovering time travel and coming back to watch himself win his fifth ring spread across the Internet. Others thought Spectrum SportsNet’s cameras serendipitously found the Year 19 veteran’s doppelgänger in the frame with the real James.
But the All-Star forward put an end to the Lakers’ faithful’s fun, revealing that the night’s most-wanted man was designer and former NBA player Patrick Christopher:
AYO!! True definition of 2 places at the same damn time!! ????????????????????????????. Somebody tell Pat C if he wants to be me for Halloween just ask me. LOL https://t.co/XcZ8jeIGYk
— LeBron James (@KingJames) November 1, 2021
Christopher took to Instagram to “give a little backstory for the Internet,” explaining he has known James for over a decade. The now-33-year-old took part in every James’ summer camp when he played for Cal between 2006-2010. Christopher went undrafted in the 2010 NBA Draft.
Basketball runs in his blood as the California native is the brother of Houston Rockets forward Josh Christopher. Also, former NBA player Tayshaun Prince is his godbrother.
But injuries didn’t allow Christopher to hang around in the NBA for long. After spells in Turkey and France, he managed to play just four games for the Utah Jazz in 2014-15 before tearing his MCL.
Having entered the post-basketball chapter of his life, Christopher founded Sloan and Bennet, a luxury clothing brand. The label designed tribute garments for James, commemorating the memory of the late Kobe and Gianna Bryant as well as George Floyd last year.
James ‘not surprised’ by his own performance in victory over Rockets
James dazzled in the 95-85 victory over Houston despite a modest stat line. The 36-year-old scored 15 points, adding seven rebounds, eight assists, and four steals.
But his two-handed reverse dunk made the top of the highlight reel and proved he stays in unbelievable shape despite playing his 19th NBA season.
Although the play and his form could shock those in the stands and sitting in front of the TV, it didn’t come as a surprise to James.
“No, I don’t surprise myself, because I know how much work I put into my craft and my body,” he said. “I prepare myself for the game, so I’m able to go out and do some things that other people are still questioning how I’m able to still do.”
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