LeBron James at the post-match news conference wearing his suit shorts. Photo: Youtube screengrab

OAKLAND – Four-time NBA Most Valuable Player LeBron James was raising eyebrows Thursday even before taking court for the NBA Finals opener by wearing suit shorts when he walked into the arena.

The 33-year-old superstar stepped off the bus for his eighth consecutive NBA championship series and ninth overall wearing a classic gray jacket with matching shorts instead of long trousers.

He also sported gray socks, black shoes and dark sunglasses as he strolled to the locker room at Oracle Arena.

“If LeBron is wearing shorts, it must be in,” NBA commissioner Adam Silver said.

Jordan Clarkson followed the lead of James by rocking the suit with shorts combo but Twitter criticism was quick to follow once the Cavaliers tweeted video of the team's arrival with the Whatever It Takes hashtag.

The Cavaliers and Warriors are meeting in the best-of-seven series for the fourth consecutive year. Golden State took the title in 2015 and 2017 while the Cavaliers won their first NBA crown in 2016.

Agence France-Presse (AFP)