I was wrong …. DEAD WRONG. As the clock stroked 9:15pm, I was absolutely convinced LeBron James was headed back to Cleveland’s Cavaliers. After all, he dropped subtle hints, like referring to the Cavs as “our team,” and declaring that his mother was happy with the decision.
I should’ve really looked between the lines (and LIES) to see the obvious. Would ‘Bron’s Moms be happier spending her January’s and February’s on the icy shores of Lake Erie or the warm sands South Beach?
Hmmm ….. you tell me.
Okay, so maybe Mrs. Delonte West isn’t really worried about the fringe benefits of a winter solstace, in South Florida. However, I’ll bet LeBron has thought it over ….. and he likes what he envisions.
Good for him.
By the way, doesn’t LeBron have a family? Indeed, he does. LeBron Jr. is going to be six years old, in October. And, Bryce Maximus just turned four, last month. What’s best for the family?
Silly me, “King James” made it very clear ….. he talked to his mother and they concluded he needed to do “what’s best for ME.” And, according to him, the “Man Upstairs” is okay with it.
Shew ….. I certainly feel better. I was convinced the “Man Upstairs” is swamped with situations like OIL in the Gulf of Mexico …. unrest in the Middle East …. homeless earthquake victims in Haiti ….. and many more desperate souls.
Then again, wasn’t the “Man Upstairs” hovering over the Orioles dugout, in Arlington, late last night? How else can you explain such divine intervention?
You can lump me in with a few other notable ‘NST personalities; I’m not a devout NBA fan. Yeah, I’ll sporadically watch NBA games on a cold winter night, and my interest is piqued when the finals roll around, in June. But, that’s about it.
I grew up in a blue-collar city, without a pro basketball team. It is what it is …..
But, I think I’m old enough and wise enough to know the “American Story” when I see it – especially when it unfolds on the field of play …..
I’ve witnessed humility and loyalty among many famous and wealthy souls. In life’s big picture, they haven’t allowed greed to numb their consience. Indeed, being rich and possessing the resulting power it wields is never a justifiable excuse for being selfish. But, that’s LeBron James …..
Last night, he showed me, you and the WORLD what’s really important to HIM. He may very well be the guy who loves himself more than Terrell Owens and Alex Rodriguez, combined.
Nice distinction, huh?
Over this past week, I’ve really experienced a heavy dose of LeBron’s self-promoting schemes. From his endorsement of pep rallies and organized pleas in other cities, to his acceptance of gifts and underhanded bribes, he has displayed a smug love of it all.
However, none of his past promotions could surpass last night’s “State Of The Selfish Star” address. Does he really have any idea what he’s done to a collective group of hardworking people who’ve loved and supported him?
That’s what happens when a professional athlete establishes roots within a community and wears the city’s name across his chest. A “marriage” of sorts, is consummated.
Now, don’t misunderstand the spirit of my message ….. I recognize that marriages and relationships end eventually. And, I’m a CAPITALIST. I have no issue with the money he makes and his innovative means for creating more of it – as silly and egotistical as those ideas have been.
However, there is no prudent justification for hurting and embarrassing people – especially when they’ve adored you and been so instrumental in creating your wealth.
You wanna leave? Go ahead. But, there’s a way to do it. And, more importantly, there’s a way NOT to do it.
Of course, LeBron chose the latter.
Perhaps, he didn’t hold his WORLDWIDE PRESS CONFERENCE to intentionally humiliate Northern Ohio. Indeed, I think it’s safe to suggest he held the primetime special, because he wanted to do it. He wanted even more attention than he’s already received. And, he didn’t care about the residual effect on anyone.
Last night’s orchestrated media moment amounted to nothing more than a real-life scenario of a husband ditching his wife in public. It’s beyond insensitive. It’s wrong …..
It’s said that NFL, NBA and MLB owners are tight knit groups; each an exclusive club. Better yet, Baltimore Ravens owner, Steve Bisciotti has publicly described other owners as his “partners.” I get that, I really do.
Thus, part of me believes the owners of the New York Knicks, Miami Heat, Cleveland Cavaliers and Chicago Bulls could’ve stopped last night’s conceited convention of one’s EGO. The King could’ve been dethroned ….. or at least publicly scolded.
Collectively, those four teams could’ve united and basically said “you’re not going to publicly snub three of us.” They could’ve threatened to rescind their offers, if the ESPN Circus wasn’t canceled by 8pm. Instead, their desperation for his services and mystique overruled the strength of PARTNERS.
The individual soldiers should never be bigger than the army.
These teams allowed this entire process to be on LeBron James’ terms. Each owner pacified the situation with a reckless hope that he would choose THEM. And, just like a desperate spouse, who’ll do anything to save a marriage, the owners really served as LeBron’s enablers.
They allowed the legitimacy of their league to be reduced to an evening of WWE drama and storyline.
As Nestor has advertised in the upcoming BRUNO SAMMARTINO DINNER, “we all have a little bit of old school rasslin’ fan in us.” But, we also know it’s choreographed and as phony as an episode of Reno 911. But, last night, was not a fictional event.
And, a community suffers today.
They’ll get over it. The sun will continue to rise each morning. The mortgage will still be due. And, life’s more important realities will take over, once again.
But, being a sports fan is a passionate endeavor. The heart gets involved. In an indirect way, your passion has led you to following the Ravens and Orioles, to visiting WNST.net and clicking on this blog.
Most of us don’t take sports too seriously, and that’s a real relief.
But, cities, towns and communities invest in athletes as symbols and ambassadors of the local culture. Do the athletes have an obligation? You bet …. if they take a dime in exchange for any such services. Or, if they’re really part of the neighborhood.
That’s what really astounds me in this whole LeBron James mess. He didn’t just breakup with Cleveland and Northern Ohio. He discarded his HOMETOWN in grand pompous galore. While it’s not even remotely similar, LeBron created a hybrid “Mayflower Van” moment for the people of Cleveland.
Does he care? Does he regret last night? Of course, not. The guy is way too self-absorbed with a bestowed sense of entitlement to ever consider the realities of how his actions impact anyone else. He’s beyond selfish.
While he had every justifiable reason to seek employment elsewhere (HE WAS A FREE AGENT), he absolutely went about the entire set of circumstances in the most improper way. He just laid a blueprint to serve as the ideal steps NOT to take when leaving a team.
He’s a bad guy.
He obviously cares about himself above anything and anyone else. He disregards humanity and good character in the name of doing as he desires. But, he’s not alone in the culpability.
LeBron James is surrounded by people who’ve obviously injected a perceived wisdom for making shrewd decisions. They’ve built him up, while convincing him of a false indestructible immortality. They’ve enabled his arrogance to grow to utterly flamboyant reaches …..
They’re wrong. He’s not indestructible. He’s not above any of us …..
Think about it ….. in the span of less than 24 hours, LeBron James has transformed from a babyface to a heel. While the people of Miami may worship him, EVERYBODY else is looking at him for the selfish and indignant dude he’s proving to be.
True character eventually surfaces. And, in the life of LeBron James, the public disclosure just took 25 short years.
Aside from the mansions, luxury cars and huge piles of money, LeBron may never acquire some of life’s most invaluable treasures. He may never really learn and appreciate the lessons savored by a common man …..
BE GOOD TO OTHERS
GO OUT OF YOUR WAY NOT TO HURT PEOPLE, DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY
PUT YOUR FAMILY AHEAD OF YOURSELF
LeBron James may never really understand these human traits and values. He is so insulated from reality that his perceptions obviously contradict with anything attached to selflessness. But, are we really surprised?
After all, he is what he is …..