The Cleveland Cavaliers made their championship visit to the White House on Thursday, and a lot of spectacular moments unfolded over the course of the afternoon.
A presidential Mannequin Challenge took place, Iman Shumpert’s brain exploded inside its casing, and lastly, this little bit of trivia trickled out after the visit ended: J.R. Smith had his now-famous shirtless shirts on deck as gift for the leader of the free world.
Per ESPN’s Dave McMenamin, the Cavaliers initially wanted Smith to present to President Obama with one of the Fresh Brewed t-shirts printed with his tattoos that were made after his post-Finals Tour de Shirtlessness this summer.
The team ultimately dropped the idea, but by the way Love explains it, it sounds like they were really close to going through with the gag.
"J.R. had the Fresh Brewed Tees with the tattoos on it, so originally [LeBron James] had mention mentioned ‘Kev, why don’t you give him the jersey and Swish you hand him the shirts?’ I never knew they weren’t going to let Swish do the shirts. When I heard my name called and Bron was like, ‘Kev, go hand him the jersey,’ I was like ‘What about Swish?’ It was fun. I didn’t know I was going to have to say a few words and go up there, but that was one of those once-in-a-lifetime opportunities that I got. Got down there as quick as I could, handed him the jersey and made for a great photo op. It was a cool, organic moment."
Sigh. If only they had capitalized on the moment. Obama even joked about J.R. wearing a shirt for the occasion.
This was, in all likelihood, the one and only time in history an American president would be able to rock J.R. Smith’s tattoo shirt fashionably and within its current range of sizes.
At least we have the idea of it, and that the Cavaliers wanted to do it in the first place — well, that’s enough for me.
Dan is on Twitter. He has an extra J.R. tat shirt in case of emergency. This is not a joke.