Hot ticket in Cleveland is anything LeBron

Jul. 28, 2014 @ 10:32 PM

AKRON, Ohio — LeBron James' Ohio hometown says fans quickly claimed the thousands of tickets available for the homecoming event expected to be his first public appearance in the state since announcing his return to the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The free tickets for the Aug. 8 show at InfoCision Stadium in Akron were released Monday and were gone within hours.

Akron spokeswoman Stephanie York won't divulge how many tickets were offered but says demand was overwhelming. She says organizers hope to make more available.

York says the event is more of a show than a party or rally. The stadium holds more than 27,000 people, but it's unclear how much space will be used for the event.

James has created big buzz by returning to Cleveland four years after leaving for the Miami Heat. Over the weekend he announced his jersey number. By preordered sales, jerseys are essentially all claimed until another order can come by boat to the U.S.

James tweeted "23 it is! It's only right I go back. 2 3=6 We still family 6." The tweet included an Instagram post with photos of James holding his No. 23 Cavaliers jersey on draft night, him later in a new version of the Cavs' jersey and a one of him in his high school jersey.

James wore No. 6 in four seasons with Miami and with the U.S. Olympic team. He used No. 23 in high school and during seven seasons in Cleveland.

About 10 days ago, James turned to social media to help him choose which number he'll wear next season with the Cavaliers. James wrote "6 or 23...." on his Twitter account.

Monday, Charlotte Hornets owner Michael Jordan responded to a question about James' choice.

"I'm cool with it,'' Jordan told ESPN.com via text message Monday morning. "I don't own a number.''

When James left Cleveland, he had intimated the NBA should consider retiring Jordan's 23 for good. ESPN said James did not contact Jordan prior to announcing his jersey number.