Donald Trump bizarrely mused about how LeBron James could get sex reassignment surgery to compete in women’s sports, video shows

Composite image of Trump, left, and LeBron James, right.
Former President Donald Trump suggested that LeBron James might eventually get sex reassignment surgery.

  • Trump, during a speech at a rally in Arizona, speculated that LeBron James might get sex reassignment surgery.
  • He suggested that the basketball player could “get the operation” to compete in women’s sports.
  • James identifies as male and has never publicly expressed a desire to transition.
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During a rambling two-hour speech in Phoenix, Arizona, on Saturday night, former President Donald Trump bizarrely mused about how basketball player LeBron James could get sex reassignment surgery.

Trump speculated that the Los Angeles Lakers star could “get the operation” in order to compete in women’s sports, he said while speaking at the “Rally to Protect Our Elections.”

The former president joked that, as the coach of a women’s sports team, he would only recruit transgender athletes. “If I were a coach, I wouldn’t be talking to too many women as we know women,” he said. “I’d be getting some of these people that … they’re ‘women.'”

Trump then suggested that James might eventually choose to transition. “Somebody said that if LeBron James ever decided to get the operation, how would he be on the court? How would he be?” he mused.

James identifies as male and has never publicly expressed a desire to undergo gender confirmation surgery.

“LeBron James, you can have him,” Trump continued before further mocking the basketball player. “Did you see the basketball ratings that were terrible? They went up after his team was defeated.”

This isn’t the first time that the former president has taken aim at James. Trump called him “racist” and “divisive” after the Los Angeles Lakers star tweeted a response to the police killing of Ohio teenager Ma’Khia Bryant in April.

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‘Space Jam: A New Legacy’ stars LeBron James and the Looney Tunes in a new family adventure – you can watch the movie on HBO Max starting July 16

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space jam a new legacy warner bros
“Space Jam: A New Legacy” stars LeBron James and the Looney Tunes.

  • “Space Jam: A New Legacy” will premiere on HBO Max and in theaters on July 16.
  • NBA icon LeBron James and the Looney Tunes star in this sequel to the 1997 family film.
  • You need the ad-free HBO Max plan ($15/month) to stream new theatrical releases like “Space Jam 2.”

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Nearly 25 years after the original “Space Jam” debuted, a sequel is finally arriving in theaters and on HBO Max. The new movie, titled “Space Jam: A New Legacy,” premieres on July 16. You can stream it for one month at no extra cost with HBO Max’s ad-free plan ($15/month).

The original movie starred basketball legend Michael Jordan, but the sequel features current NBA icon LeBron James as its new lead. In “Space Jam: A New Legacy,” James teams up with Warner Bros’ Looney Tunes characters for a basketball game against a group of digitized stars nicknamed the Goon Squad. The fate of James’ son, played by actor Cedric Joe, and the Looney Tunes themselves, will be decided by the outcome of the game.

Much like the original “Space Jam,” the Goon Squad characters are inspired by real NBA and WNBA players, including Damian Lillard, Anthony Davis, Diana Taurasi, and Nneka Ogwumike. “Space Jam: A New Legacy” also stars Don Cheadle, Khris Davis, and Sonequa Martin-Green.

Where to watch ‘Space Jam: A New Legacy’

“Space Jam: A New Legacy” will premiere in theaters and on HBO Max on July 16. To watch the movie at home, you’ll need the ad-free HBO Max plan. “Space Jam: A New Legacy” will be available to stream until August 17.

The HBO Max ad-free plan costs $15 a month for on-demand access to thousands of movies and TV shows. A cheaper, ad-supported plan is available for $10 a month, but it doesn’t include Warner’s theatrical releases.

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You can watch HBO Max using the dedicated app on Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Apple devices, Android, Xbox, PlayStation, Chromecast, and most smart TVs. You can also visit HBOMax.com to stream via your computer browser.

“Space Jam: A New Legacy” will be available to stream in 4K with support for Dolby Vision, Dolby Atmos, and HDR10 formats on compatible devices.

What else is coming to HBO Max?

Warner Bros. will continue to bring its new theatrical releases to HBO Max throughout 2021. “The Suicide Squad” will arrive on August 6 while “The Many Saints of Newark,” a prequel film to HBO’s “The Sopranos,” will be released on October 1. “Malignant,” a new horror movie by “The Conjuring” producer James Wan, is due out in September.

The service is also home to several original series, including a brand-new reboot of “Gossip Girl.”

You can find more details on HBO Max in our full HBO Max guide and our HBO Max review.

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Giannis Antetokounmpo had an incredible chase-down block that looked almost identical to LeBron James’ most famous play

Giannis Antetokounmpo prepares to block Mikal Bridges.
Giannis Antetokounmpo blocks Mikal Bridges.

  • Giannis Antetokounmpo had an incredible chase-down block on the Suns in Game 1 of the NBA Finals.
  • The play looked nearly identical to LeBron James’ chase-down block in the 2016 Finals.
  • James’ occurred on a bigger stage, but both players were similar in set-up and impressiveness.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

Giannis Antetokounmpo may have closely studied LeBron James and the art of the chase-down block.

During Game 1 of the NBA Finals on Tuesday, Antetokounmpo skied and swatted a layup attempt by the Phoenix Suns’ Mikal Bridges off the glass to save a basket.

It was an incredible display of effort and athleticism from Antetokounmpo, who was returning from a hyper-extended knee for the Milwaukee Bucks. He was questionable for Game 1, but suited up after missing the previous two games of the playoffs.

Here’s the play:

Another look:

It likely looked familiar to NBA fans. The play was almost identical to James’ now-legendary chase-down block of Andre Iguodala in the final minutes of Game 7 of the 2016 Finals. Even ESPN’s Jeff Van Gundy noted the similarities on Tuesday.

  • Both were chase-down blocks, of course.
  • Both blocks occurred on the right side of the rim, with the shot-blocker coming across the basket from the left side to swat the ball.
  • In both plays, the player attempting the layup was slowed down by just a fraction of a second by a defender contesting the shot. That small hesitation allowed time for the block.
Giannis Antetokounmpo's block side-by-side with LeBron James'
Giannis Antetokounmpo’s chase-down block looked like LeBron James’ in the 2016 Finals.

Of course, James’ block happened on a bigger stage, but both were amazing showcases of will and NBA players’ incredible athleticism.

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Meet the stylist who turned LeBron James into a fashion icon

  • Stylist Rachel Johnson took LeBron James from NBA all-star to fashion superstar.
  • Johnson’s influence spread throughout the NBA and bled into other sports. She has also styled Victor Cruz, Cam Newton, and Amar’e Stoudemire.
  • Johnson’s work with athletes has helped add diversity and inclusivity to the fashion industry.

Following is a transcript of the video.

Rachel Johnson: My name is Rachel Johnson. I am a celebrity wardrobe stylist and the CEO and president of the Thomas Faison Agency.

Narrator: Throughout her career, Rachel Johnson has turned all-star athletes into fashion superstars. She’s styled household names like LeBron James, Victor Cruz, Cam Newton, and Amar’e Stoudemire, and she’s widely credited with making over the NBA.

Cam Newton: Watching basketball games, you get a different idea when you start seeing just as many cameras covering the postgame as the walk-up as vice versa for any other sport, too.

Narrator: But before she connected the fashion world with the sports world, Johnson pursued a degree in education.

Johnson: I was two years into getting my degree to teach high school English when I met a gentleman named Groovy Lou who worked for P. Diddy, and he told me that there were black women who were responsible for creating images for celebrities. So, as soon as Groovy told me that this could be a viable career path for me, I knew that that’s what I wanted to do.

Narrator: After college, she worked for Essence Magazine then moved into styling musicians and eventually met Jalen Rose.

Johnson: So Jalen was my first entry into the athlete world, and it was a beautiful way to enter the business because I was able to understand the mentality of an athlete. So the very next athlete I started working with was LeBron James, and I met him through Jay-Z, and working with LeBron is what really helped to completely change the way that the NBA dresses.

I knew that in order for LeBron to be respected from a style standpoint, that he needed to be wearing recognizable, historic brands. Coming from a fashion standpoint where they just didn’t understand men of this stature, they didn’t understand necessarily the athletic world, I had to bring these two worlds together in a way that both of them could understand each other’s language. So my goal was to bring him to these fashion houses and have looks created for him so that when he had press opportunities and opportunities to be in front of the camera, he was wearing what any other well-dressed actor would be wearing.

Narrator: James became a global superstar. His exposure and Johnson’s influence eventually permeated throughout the rest of the NBA, but Johnson’s work didn’t stop there.

Johnson: I had been going to Europe. I had been going to Paris and Milan to attend fashion shows, and when I was there, I realized there was a huge gap. There was a huge opportunity there for my clients, for athletes, for black men in particular to attend these shows because there was absolutely no diversity present at all. Victor was my first client who was brave enough to attack the European market.

Narrator: And Johnson and Cruz succeeded. Cruz became the face of Givenchy’s fall and winter 2015 campaign.

Johnson: On a day-to-day basis, my goals are to help build relationships with my clients and fashion brands, and once I figure out where it is that they want to be placed and how they want to be perceived by the public, that gives me the insight that I need to understand what brands I should connect them with, which events they should be attending, and then obviously what they’re wearing.

Victor Cruz: I call her my fairy fashion godmother because whenever I have a question or a debate about what I want to wear, how I want to wear it, I’ll ask her.

Narrator: Her work continues to break down barriers and spread throughout popular culture.

Newton: For so long, the football player stigma has been this big, strong, masculine guy who may not have any style. All he just wants to do is just hit somebody, but now it’s just a different demographic of how people approach athleticism in different ways.

Johnson: So these last 10 years of focusing on athletes and really bringing the two worlds of fashion and athletes together has been to heighten the awareness of fashion designers and brands, to help them be more inclusive and create sizes that are available for everyone.

Cruz: DeAndre Hopkins, obviously, Odell Beckham Jr., you’ve got different guys that probably wouldn’t get the notoriety for their fashion five to six, seven years ago, and now they’re getting those accolades. They’re getting that attention, and they’re getting the respect that they deserve, but it’s definitely evolved even from the time that I met Rachel all the way to now.

Johnson: There are men who may have not necessarily felt comfortable wearing what’s coming down the runway if they see a waif-y model wearing it, but a regular 9-to-5 businessman can look at what a LeBron James or Russell Westbrook or Victor Cruz is wearing and say, ‘You know what? Maybe I can do that, too because he’s more like me.’ And so, all of these stereotypes, I think from a fashion perspective, were broken down for men, and it just opened things up to make everything about men’s fashion become more accessible. They’ve made it OK to try things that you’ve never tried before, and that’s a very cool thing.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This video was originally published in March 2019.

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