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LeBron James' Speech at 2016 ESPY Awards; Anthony, Paul & Wade Join to Speak Against Gun Violence; Full Transcript Text & Watch Video

NBA Superstars tell fans that enough is enough

LeBron James
LeBron James (R) of the Cleveland Cavaliers poses with his girlfriend Savannah Brinson (L) and the NBA's Most Valuable Player award that was presented to him during a ceremony at the University of Akron in Akron, Ohio May 2, 2010. |

Cleveland Cavaliers superstar LeBron James along with several other NBA superstars gave an inspiring speech at the opening of the 2016 ESPY Awards.

The ESPY's is the yearly awards show which recognizes players from all sports on their achievements. James would end up winning five trophies in all, including best male athlete and best NBA player.

Below is the transcript of their speech.

Carmelo Anthony:

Good evening. Tonight is a celebration of sports, celebrating our accomplishments and our victories. But, in this moment of celebration, we asked to start the show tonight this way, the four of us talking to our fellow athletes, with the country watching.

Because we cannot ignore the reality of the current state of America. The events of the past week have put a spotlight on the injustice, distrust and anger that plague so many of us.

The system is broken. The problems are not new. The violence is not new. And the racial divide definitely is not new.

But the urgency to create change is at an all-time high.

Chris Paul:

We stand here tonight accepting our role in uniting communities, to be the change we need to see. We stand before you as fathers, sons, husbands, brothers, uncles and in my case, as an African-American man and the nephew of a police officer, who is one of the hundreds of thousands of great officers serving this country.

But, Trayvon Martin. Michael Brown. Tamir Rice. Eric Garner. Laquan McDonald. Alton Sterling. Philando Castile.

This is also our reality.

Generations ago, legends like Jesse Owens, Jackie Robinson, Muhammad Ali, John Carlos and Tommie Smith, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Jim Brown, Billie Jean King, Arthur Ashe and countless others, they set a model for what athletes should stand for.

So we choose to follow in their footsteps.

Dwyane Wade:

The racial profiling has to stop. The shoot-to-kill mentality has to stop. Not seeing the value of black and brown bodies has to stop. But also, the retaliation has to stop.

The endless gun violence in places like Chicago, Dallas, not to mention Orlando, it has to stop. Enough.

Enough is enough.

Now, as athletes, it's on us to challenge each other to do even more than we already do in our own communities. And the conversation, it cannot stop as our schedules get busy again. It won't always be convenient. It won't. It won't always be comfortable, but it is necessary.

LeBron James:

We all feel helpless and frustrated by the violence. We do. But that's not acceptable. It's time to look in the mirror and ask ourselves what are we doing to create change.

It's not about being a role model. It's not about our responsibility to a tradition of activism.

I know tonight we're honoring Muhammad Ali. The GOAT. But to do his legacy any justice, let's use this moment as a call to action for all professional athletes to educate ourselves. It's for these issues. Speak up.

Use our influence. And renounce all violence.

And most importantly, go back to our communities, invest our time, our resources, help rebuild them, help strengthen them, help change them.

We all have to do better. Thank you.

James and his fellow Cavaliers teammates Kevin Love, and Kyrie Irving were also able to recognize NFL Hall of Famer Jim Brown on his social contributions to the city of Cleveland over the years.

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