So, you’re a big name free agent basketball player. You got drafted out of high school, with tons of hype surrounding you. You stay in your home state and are the #1 pick overall. You play there for 7 years and get to the Finals but never win the title. You win a gold medal for your country, too. You are on top of the world but feel like something is still lacking – that title. You now have the chance to not only be a part of one of the greatest triumvirates in basketball history, but the guys inviting you are friends of yours. And all anybody wants to do is win – in fact, everyone is taking less money just for the opportunity.
Yet, for some reason, this doesn’t make people happy. For some reason, everyone wanted you to stay in Cleveland. Hmm. Regardless, you pull the trigger and make the move.
Why is this move still not being celebrated for a push for winning, camaraderie, and even taking a bit less money to realize a dream? Who knows. Instead, the mass media out there is attacking Lebron at every turn for this. Maybe those of us who live in Miami don’t know this but according to his latest tweet, Lebron James has a lot of doubters out there – to say the least. “Don’t think for one min that I haven’t been taking mental notes of everyone taking shots at me this summer. And I mean everyone!” Really?
Why does Lebron James still have to defend this move? Is he taking less money? Yes. Is he committed to winning? Let’s say he just wanted to play with friends. He is still taking less money to do it. By the way, his friends – Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade – aren’t too bad a pair of basketball players we’re told. So, even if you doubt that he is committed to winning, they are going to win games. Besides, you think Lebron James wouldn’t take all this flack from old-blowhards like Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan, and the fat guy who does Tmobile commercials with Wade for nothing would you?
Look, people just don’t get it. Got it. There are going to be myriads of tweets and articles that respond to James’ “tweet of doom” in derogatory ways. The fact is, look at it as a primary source. You have the feelings of James shared publicly with everyone and the miracle is – it wasn’t reported in some newspaper by some overweight, balding sports journalist. Or a healthy one with a great disposition for that matter. Everyone got first dibs on James’ thoughts and likewise, people react. What doesn’t make sense here is, why all the villainy?
I guess if I was not from Miami I, too, may find something to doubt with this move. Then again, I am a rational human being and this move makes sense to me. What still doesn’t make sense is how a guy takes less money to play with good friends to try and win several titles – with the talent to do so – is not lauded? Will it ever be? It doesn’t matter – because when all is said and done, and the Heat have achieved historical successes, the praise will come then. There are already millions of new Heat fans just because of Lebron James. That number will grow as the seasons roll by.
Lebron James, like the Heat, have to get used to the idea that there is a target on their back. They are a spectacle. They might as well be wearing handlebar mustaches. There will always be detractors, that you can be sure of. James, no doubt, knows this. The question is, will he live it down. It seems like this is the kind of thing Lebron James uses for fuel. So, let’s start a fire. After all, how appropriate that he now plays for a team known as the Heat.