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LeBron James Sums Up His Thoughts On Pat Riley

LeBron James on the court in Game 1 vs. Portland in 2020.

LAKE BUENA VISTA, FLORIDA - AUGUST 18: LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers during the fourth quarter against the Portland Trail Blazers in Game One of the Western Conference First Round during the 2020 NBA Playoffs at AdventHealth Arena at ESPN Wide World Of Sports Complex on August 18, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

The 2020 NBA Finals will pit LeBron James against his former team, the Miami Heat, who are still led by team president Pat Riley.

Riley has been in charge of the Heat since 1995, including during LeBron's four seasons with the team. The Heat won two NBA titles during that span, but when LeBron chose to return to Cleveland in 2014, Riley admitted he took the decision personally and was "very angry."

Though Riley eventually cooled down, you can bet beating LeBron would make this championship a little bit sweeter. The same could probably be said for James about the Heat.

Still, judging by the answer he gave when asked what comes to mind when he thinks of Pat Riley, you can tell LeBron James has a tremendous amount of respect for the man.

"When you hear the name Pat Riley, you think about probably one of the greatest minds this game has ever had," James said. "He's won at every level. I saw a stat the other day that he's been part of a championship in every decade. This league is not the same without Riles."

Riley's resume is definitely unimpeachable. The same can be said for James, though he still has his detractors thanks to a 3-6 record in the NBA Finals.

LeBron quest for for ring No. 4 continues tomorrow night. Game 1 of the NBA Finals between the Lakers and the Heat is set for 9 p.m. ET on ABC.