CLEVELAND, OH - MAY 24: LeBron James #23 of the Cleveland Cavaliers reacts in the second quarter against the Atlanta Hawks during Game Three of the Eastern Conference Finals of the 2015 NBA Playoffs at Quicken Loans Arena on May 24, 2015 in Cleveland, Ohio. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Gregory Shamus—Getty Images
By Salima Koroma
May 26, 2015

The Cleveland Cavaliers are charging through the NBC Playoffs, taking a 3-0 lead in the Eastern Conference Finals into Game 4 against the Atlanta Hawks on Tuesday night.

But the road to the playoffs has been a daunting one, especially for LeBron James, whose return to Ohio was, in some cases, met with begrudging excitement.

With the Cavs on the cusp of reaching the NBA Finals for just the second time in team history, TIME explores the love-hate relationship between Cleveland fans and their hometown hero.

These days, it’s all love for LeBron in Ohio.


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