I planned on doing a blog on LeBron's exodus from Cleveland anyway, but due to some of the questions and statements I have received about my opinion of him I felt the best way to address it is in a blog entry. This isn't going to be some literary masterpiece. This is going to be more of a stream of consciousness, point by point entry about some of the things I have heard or been asked.
First of all my feelings in general:
He has always had the biggest ego in sports right alongside A-Rod, T.O. and Floyd Mayweather. Your ego can't possibly be anything less than that when you are comfortable with the moniker "King" before you ever step on to an NBA floor. That raised my eyebrow at jump, but I gave it a pass because if any city deserved a star and deserved success on a national level it's Cleveland. I say this as a Pittsburgher and die-hard Steelers fan. I am not the type of cat to hate rival teams just because they are rivals. I do tend to have little to no patients for jerks.
Then there is his Jordan worship and the fact that he aspired to be in that company. I was happy for Cleveland that they finally had a player that was going to try and bring them a title and appeared to have the ability to do so.
The picture above is of LeBron's own words from an ESPN The Magazine article from 2006. This has always kinda been my requirement for greatness in regards to basketball. It's the reason why people love Jordan, Magic & Bird. It's the reason why NBA in the 1980's and to a lesser extent the 90's are looked back upon so fondly. Isaiah's Pistons and Dominique's Hawks battling Bird's Celtics, Jordan's Bulls, Barkley's Sixers/Suns, Drexler's Blazers, Stockton and Malone's Jazz & Ewing's Knicks. These guys didn't chase rings while in their prime. They tried to bring rings to the teams & cities that they represented. Barkley was dealt to the Suns because the Sixers were rebuilding and at the time he was 29 years old. Drexler was in a similar situation when he was dealt to the Rockets and that was only after giving the Blazer 12 years!
It's kinda sad to see a young man with his talent give up so easily. Please don't be fooled, because that's exactly what he did. He couldn't beat them so he joined them. Do you think Jordan wanted to leave the Bulls for the Pistons? The fact that he is basically running away from competition kinda bugs me. To call yourself King James and then go to someone else's team to be his sidekick . . . huh? What? He told Cleveland and the rest of the nation that he can't beat Kobe, Wade or Duncan.
Wade was out there recruiting free agents to come to Miami to help him. Why couldn't LeBron have done that for the Cleveland? This is a city that has not experienced a title since 1964. You're going to go on national television to tell them, "fuck you"? Really? REALLY? Let's put this into perspective. More than likely if you are reading this you weren't even born the last time Cleveland won anything. Hell, man of you may have parents that weren't even born with Cleveland last held a title. Cleveland has had to deal with The Drive, The Fumble and Jordan Over Ehlo and now LeBron has now given them The Exodus, The Departure, The Decision or The Defection.
Look at this through a real world lens. How does a man that has worked for a company for 7 years not have the guts to go up to his boss as a man and look him in the eye to tell him that he's leaving? Think about that. He essentially did just that. This is a company that gave him anything and everything that he could have wanted. He had input on personnel moves and his coach. How about this? Would you dump a boyfriend or girlfriend on TV? I'm not talking about the degenerates that go on talk shows. I'm talk to you! Would you really slap them in the face like that?
People want to make fun of or are outraged by Cavalier's owner, Dan Gilbert's letter to Cavs fans. But if you did everything you could to make a person happy and comfortable and you are told on TV that your best employee or significant other is no long longer going to be with you, you would be pissed also. If you say no, you're lying to yourself. It's like he wanted to rub his decision in the face of the Cavs, their fans and the city. Let's also not forget how he went out in Cleveland on the court. We were all wondering why he was playing the way he was. He seemed completely disinterested in beating the Celtics and played the worst series any superstar player, ever! Shortly after the series it hit the web that his mother may have been getting piped by Delonte West. Is this true? I don't know. But his play was so bad that people felt that something like this may have been an excuse for it. People want to focus on Dan Gilbert's guarantee that the Cavs will win a title before LeBron, but he said it in anger right after being embarrassed on national television. When he woke up this morning he probably regretted that part of the letter, but the rest of his letter was maybe in bad for in tone but was anything he wrote not true?
I want to be crystal clear about this. I have no problem with the fact that he chose to leave Cleveland. I felt that was going to happen most of this season and those feelings grew stronger after his playoff performance and the rumors about his mother and Delonte. The problem I have is strictly in regards to the nature in which he went about what he did.
With that being said I want to address some of the questions that I received on twitter in regards to my disappointment in his leaving and why I find the way he exited upsetting.
Have u ever thought that a ring is more important than all this greatness YALL are wanting for him?
Chasing a ring somewhere else when you are in the prime of your career with another team lessens it in my eyes and I doubt that I am alone in my feelings.
Why are yall mad? He don't care what yall think.
I feel this whole process of taking over a network for an hour just to flip off your previous employer and the city that you claim to love is a asshole/jerk/bitch ass move. I have absolutely no tolerance for assholes/jerks/bitch asses in ANY aspect of life. Him caring what I think doesn't matter. People express their feelings on people that don't care about them all of the time. I don't why his caring should have any impact on whether I vent frustration or not. Why is absence of empathy or compassion for others seen as no big deal by people in our society? That's what that announcement was. Our society is going to hell in a hand basket.
I don't care that much & I am trying to find out why errybody else does?
The this is what sports fans do. They care about their teams. They care about the athletes on their teams. Why do people care about Real Housewives? Why do people care about anything or anyone? It's because they are fans of them or it.
You know, if I were still his age, I might hold him to what he says. Being as though at that time I was just pompous enough to think I even 'started' to figure it all out. So yeah, I could see riding him for saying that as a 21 year old as a 20something. Now? Naw...I know he doesn't know everything at that age. I think you do too. You know good cotdamm well that could change. I would expect you not to hold that 'boy' (and make no mistake, he was but a boy then) to that foolish statement. lol *this is regarding the ESPN quote pictured above*
He made the quote just four years ago when he was 20 or 21 years old. We aren't talking about some 17 year old. He's a grown man that can fight for his country, drive a car and drink legally. Why would I not hold him to what he says? When I was 21 if I said something like that I personally wouldn't back down from it. It's not like he wasn't man enough to be the face of a franchise and have his own shoe and clothing line. If you want to be the King this is part of the job as well.
Thanks for stopping by,