Miami Hate: Trying to make sense of our feelings for LeBron

I had an interesting conversation with a reader the other day.

He asked me if I could believe all the hatred that had developed for LeBron James since last summer.  After all, my friend argued, all James did was make a career move and was now being crucified by everyone outside of Dade County.

As a result, these 2011 NBA Finals morphed into a battle of good versus evil, with a German, ironically, playing the role of the good guy this time around.

Heck, prior to the NBA Finals, even I wrote that I found myself rooting for the Dallas Mavericks for reasons I couldn’t explain.  I tried to make sense of it all.  I’d always liked LeBron, as well as Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh, and I’ve never rooted for the Mavs.  So why all of a sudden was I pulling for Dallas?

LeBron’s lackluster performance(s) in these Finals further fueled the criticism.  In the past few weeks, he’s been called soft, disengaged, uninvolved, overrated, a sell-out, a front-runner, invisible, a no-show, overplayed, under-committed, childish, passive, petty, a shrinking violet, Robin to Wade’s Batman, A-Rod to Wade’s Jeter and lacking the killer instinct to be a true NBA great.  One thing he won’t be called any time soon, however, is NBA champion.

After the Heat blew through in the Eastern Conference Semi-Finals, I hosted a poll asking whether Miami would win this year’s championship.  Most thought Miami wouldn’t, which tells me either my readers know their basketball or the resentment for LeBron had even spread to the friendly confines of the SportsChump.  Even in Central Florida, a four-hour drive from where LeBron now plays ball, it was commonplace to hear fans rooting against him.

So where is all this vitriol coming from and is it justified?

Maybe it’s because we thought LeBron and Co. took the easy way out, as if winning a championship is ever easy.  Obviously not since it took Jason Kidd seventeen years to do so.  Maybe we didn’t like the way LeBron left Cleveland, as if any of us outside that city were personally affected.

With the amount of money flying around professional sports these days, and allegiances meaning so little, we shouldn’t be surprised when athletes look for greener pastures.  We’ve all jumped at opportunities to further our careers, just without Jim Gray in the room.

LeBron has been vilified for making what he thought was the best move for himself, his family and his career.  Even if he does win titles (he has to, right?), we’ll still remember them as tainted, asterisked.   To me, he’s just a guy who, after eight years in the league, is still struggling to find his identity on the court.

There are worse sins.

This will now be a long, soul-searching summer for LeBron, even more so than his last.

NBA fans have always been eager to anoint someone the next Michael Jordan and we tear them down when that never comes to pass.  Jordan set the bar unattainably high, winning six championships in near storybook fashion.  We call his flu game performance ‘heroic.’  We call LeBron’s triple-doubles inadequate.  That’s because Michael’s came in wins while LeBron’s continue to come in losses.  So do we really want another Michael Jordan or just someone to beat up after failing to live up to those expectations?

Ultimately, it’s our own choice who to cheer for and who to dislike.  Maybe another season of heartache will earn LeBron some more fans or maybe we should lighten up on the guy altogether.  Just because Jordan, Magic and Bird did it a certain way doesn’t mean that every modern-day athlete has to follow in their footsteps.

Or does it?

80 thoughts on “Miami Hate: Trying to make sense of our feelings for LeBron

  1. Lighten up? Nah. James clearly doesn’t get it. He’s also not a pressure player and/or a guy who rises to the moment.

    He’ll likely win a championship or two but will never be considered one of the greatest of all-time. A top 50 player like Pippen? Sure, but not one of the top 10 or 15 ever. Hell, Dirk is knocking on the door of the Top 15 right now…one or two more great seasons and he’s there.

  2. Pingback: Miami Hate: Trying to make sense of our feelings for LeBron, NBA | BallHyped Sports Blogs

  3. Never lighten up on this guy. Not until he stops believing his own hype. Its against the laws of nature to brag before you actually accomplish something. Dan Gilbert may have been correct when he predicted that the Cavs would win a title before the Heat. As for the Heat winning it all, just remember all of the good teams coming up fast, like the Thunder, Grizzlies and Bulls.

  4. Drew…

    Thanks for being the first to chime in, and for proving my point. I expect to see a lot more comments like yours (see Snake).

    The fans and media are absolutely killing this guy and I don’t expect that to come to an end anytime soon.

    Are we looking for some humility from the man? If and when he wins, how will he be remembered?

    Clearly his performance was lackluster, to put it nicely.

    In their recent Top 50 poll, Slam Magazine listed LeBron as the 42nd best player ever…

    http://www.slamonline.com/online/the-magazine/features/2009/06/the-new-top-50/

    They list Dr. J as their 15th best player of all-time, which means that list is already a tough one to crack.

    By the way, I owe you a phone call.

  5. By the way, Snake, Bird was 9th on that Slam list.

    When, if ever, will we lighten up on this guy?

    How many clutch performances and titles will that take? And what will it take for him to win back a fan base?

  6. I don’t even care about sports and I hope the worst for lebron. He and his entourage need to mature and learn about humility and and class. They showed they lack both with his actions last year. Again in the wake of his and his team’s loss he won’t accept responsibility for his lack and tosses insults at those who revel at his loss. His mother obviously never taught him well. I hope someone he respects can teach him how to act.

  7. Sounds like you’ve already prepared yourself for watching Dwight leave Orlando huh?!?

    I think the real reason for all the hating on Lebron is because he isn’t taking advantage of his talents. A guy that physically gifted shouldn’t care what people write about him aka tweeting about it at 2AM. He shouldn’t care what his teammates think about him or if they like him. Kobe, Bird, and Jordan never cared if their teammates liked them, they just wanted to win. Lebron seems to care if Juwan Howard and Mario Chalmers are getting theirs, and are happy. That’s cool and all for the early parts of the game, but NOT in the fourth quarter. Pleasing everyone around him is his downfall imo.

    Another thing I can’t get over with Lebron is it’s like he doesn’t work on his game. He’s never had a go to low post move. He hasn’t ever developed a mid-range game. Maybe his gift of amazing athleticism hurt him on the practice floor, and he’s never truly worked on it…

  8. 3-for-3, JP.

    Let me ask you something, man. Did you ever like LeBron? I mean, you rooted for him to succeed when he was in Cleveland, right?

    Most everybody did.

    And now, one year after the Decision, nobody can stand the guy.

    Look, I get it. He played like shit these NBA Finals, didn’t live up to his potential… or maybe, MAYBE the Mavs were just the better team.

    Or maybe he’s not as good as we all thought he was.

    I’m not old enough to really grasp the LeBron/Wilt comparisons but from what I understand, the Stilt wasn’t the most clutch player of all time. Far from it.

    Now we have LeBron.

    It’s still hard to imagine this guy won’t end up his career with a title, isn’t it?

    Were his post-game presser comments about people going back to their own lives out of line? Yes.

    But LeBron ain’t the first athlete to not give a damn about the fans and he certainly won’t be the last.

    All I’m asking is… is all this hate justified?

  9. Not necessarily, Chap, and thanks for changing the subject for a brief second.

    Look, you and I both know I’m not a fan of the not-so-Magical moves last season. It may have set us back years, particularly if it means we lose Dwight.

    Obviously I want him to stay. He’s the only quality big man in the league and made some serious strides in his game this season. Heck, he played a hell of a lot better than LeBron when it mattered most.

    But Orlando’s between a rock and a hard place. They better find a team or two that’s willing to take those bullshit Arenas and Turkoglu contracts they signed or Dwight could be signing with one of his BFFs elsewhere.

    Re: LeBron, I agree with you on needing that mid-range game. And he has NO post-game whatsoever, which is ridiculous for a guy of his size.

    But the greats, in addition to their physical skills, had the mental to match. Jury’s still out on that one with BronBron.

  10. Yeah, I’ll give it up that you weren’t on board with the moves your Magic made this year. I thought they’d work out better than they did, but maybe I was still thinking of Arenas in his GSW uni. It doesn’t feel likely Dwight will stay, since he isn’t signing that two year extension, but who really knows except him!

    If I was a coach trying to defend Lebron, I’d bust out the Rajon Rondo technique. Sag off of him to the point where you’re almost daring him to take threes, and pack the paint until he shows he can spot up and make jumpers consistently. I still think it’s insane that a guy as gifted as him needs to work on so much of his game. He’s been living off talent all these years not basketball smarts. It’s like when you play jungle ball as a kid where there’s limited rules, the big guy always wins. I’d argue that Dwight has shown 10X the amount improvement that Bron has made over their respective careers….

  11. Regardless of how it happened, Chap, Carlisle and his Mavs had quite the game plan for LeBron.

    You know as well as I do, talent alone doesn’t guarantee championships. It’s the NBA. Every one of those guys is talented. The greats work their jumpers. They log sick hours of gym time.

    You’ve seen those Dirk workouts. How many LeBron workout videos have you seen? Richard Simmons might work out more.

    All I can say with any certainty is, I work out considerably less than either Dirk or LeBron… and it shows.

  12. I don’t think anyone but Cavs diehards really hate Lebron for deciding to play elsewhere. The Cavs management didn’t exactly instill a lot of faith in their ability to build a championship team. But plenty were rightfully repelled that he chose to make a self-aggrandizing spectacle of his “decision”.

    And I think that most people share my perception that LeBron, D-Wade, and company at the Heat (plus plenty in the media, to be sure) thought that they were going to somehow bypass all the hard work of really building a team that plays as a team and has an identity as a team by just slapping together a collection of all-stars and waltzing into a championship. I was gratified that that assumption proved to be false. The ideals of commitment, sacrifice and perseverance were vindicated by this outcome.

    If two, three years down the road, this Heat team wins it all, I’ll say “good, they did it the right way.” But this year, good riddance to them.

  13. You asked: How many clutch performances and titles will that take? And what will it take for him to win back a fan base?

    Winners are remembered for just that- winning. If Dallas hadn’t won last night, everyone would be pointing at Dirk’s sub-par game. But instead, everyone is pointing at him and saying, “NBA Champ. MVP.”

    At this point, I don’t know if LeBron has a true clutch performance in him. Hell, at this point, I don’t know if he has a title in him, as one generally leads to another. Yes, you can win a title without a clutch performance, but when you’re talking about the calibre of a LeBron James, it’s expected that he steps up.

    Until LeBron realizes he has to leave everything on the floor- realizes he has to work for something rather than waiting for it to be handed to him- he’ll struggle to win a title, as well as the fan base.

  14. It was really good to see the Mavericks win. I think the Heat responded with class immediately but lets see how classy they remain over the next few weeks. *cough *cough

  15. Rob…

    Valid points and thanks for taking the time to comment.

    One thing that’s consistent about past NBA champions is that they pay their dues. Always have, always will.

    While Bosh, Wade and LBJ are all NBA vets, this was, as you suggest, a team that was thrown together. I might add, they don’t complement each other very well. LeBron’s a 3 and Wade is a 2, but they both like to play the 1.

    A glass half-full Heat fan might think this team actually overachieved. I mean, they did almost win, right? Dallas was just more disciplined, better structured.

    Your second point is also well-taken. Now that this Heat team has taken their lumps, will we eventually be alright when they do, and I believe that they will, win a championship?

  16. Lorene…

    Well said.

    I’ve said many a time on this site that we sports fans are a fickle bunch.

    Fortunately, Jet, Marion, Stephenson and Barea had Dirk’s back in the first half until he could find his rhythm.

    Confident shooters do what it takes to find their way out of slumps. Dirk was going to win or lose guns a-blazing. He never lost that confidence. In this series, I’m not sure LeBron ever had any.

    As I mentioned in an earlier comment, we’ve never seen LeBron’s workouts. We don’t know what he does but we’ve never heard about him taking 500 jumpers in a day.

    I’m 5’11, 185 and can back opponents down in the post. LeBron’s a foot taller and considerably stronger. He should be able, at a minimum, to score points in the paint if needed.

    The numbers don’t lie. LeBron’s +/- in this series was inexplicable.

  17. HEY CHRIS DID YOU KNOW A HOMELESS ASK LEBRON IN MIAMI FOR A DOLLAR AND HE ONLY GAVE HIM 3 QUATERS , DO YOU GET IT, LOL. I LOVE BASKETBALL AND I COURSE I DO IM FROM PR. THE LAND THAT SAW THE LATEST NBA CHAMPION BEING BORN JJ BAREA BABY. ANY HOW WHEN I SAW LEBRON GOING TO THE HEAT , I SAID THEY WILL ONLY LOOSE 10 GAMES ALL SEASON AND WILL BRING THE TITLE TO MIAMI. BOY WAS I WRONG. EVERYONE BLAMES LEBRON BUT FOR ME HERE ARE THE FACTS . MIAMI HAS NO CENTER AND NO COACH. MIAMI WAS OUTCOACH BIG TIME. LEBRON HAS NO RESPECT FOR THAT COACH AND NEVER WILL. THE ROTATION WAS AWFUL . GIVE ALL THE CREDIT TO DALLAS IT WAS THE BETTER OVERALL TEAM. WE SHOULD HAD TAKEN NOTICE WHEN THEY TOOKED THE LAKERS ON 4 , BUT NO ONE DID . LETS HOPE THE MAGICS DONT LOOSE HOWARD TO MIAMI AS I THINK THEY WILL TRADE BOSCH TO MAKE ROOM ON THE SALARY CAP TO GRAB HOWARD . KEEP EYE ON THAT BABY.

  18. LeBron made his own bed by treating Cleveland like Charlie Brown.

    LeLucy said his heart was there and they would get first crack at him taking his talents back to the town that adored him, when all along he knew he was going to jump ship.
    -No shame in leaving mind you, but to lead them along seemed somewhat dishonest..

    Then the hoopla filled corination, smoke and all.

    No one held a gun to his head and made him publicly say he was going to win 5, 6, 7, 8 championships.

    No one made him and Wade goof on Dirk’s cough when they knew damn well the cameras were rolling…Right after getting their asses whooped I might add.

    To cap it off, he insults the fans that enable him to live that elite lifestyle of his in a moment of childish sour grapes.

    It seems his mom was too busy with Delonte to teach LeMarie Antoinette about not saying anything if you can’t say something nice…..Those peasants that fill the so-called “kings” coffers are just calling bullshit on the boy who called himself wolf one too many times.

    He made HIMSELF too big to fail.

    The only thing missing now is a Shaq rap asking him;
    LeBron, braggard, tell me how that Dirk taste?

    http://www.sportsreviewmagazine.com

  19. I can’t say I disagree with you. I wrote to Cleveland to Suck It Up when Lebron announced his decision. It was his choice to make and no one can stop him. I don’t think he has to be concerned with the people he has hurt but I think any half-decent human being would be. Doesn’t really add much to what I was saying though, it was just getting to one my main point.

  20. He made his own bed, now he gets to lie in it.

    He treated the city that loved him like Charlie Brown.
    Told them, they’d get first crack at his “talents”, knowing all along he was intending to pull a LeLucy and yank the football down to South Beach at the last minute.
    It’s not that he left…It’s the LeBronthy Weiner sized lie that’s the sideways part.

    Then the self corination spectacle, smoke and all.

    No one held a gun to his head and told him to say they were going to win 5, 6, 7, 8 championships. He said that on his own.

    Then to goof on Dirk’s cough, knowing full well the cameras were rolling…Right after he kicked your ass with a fever no less..

    And the cherry on top is telling Joe sports fan that called bullshit when they saw it that they get to go back to their shitty little lives while he goes back to his mansion wreaks of “let them eat cake” Queen LeMarie Aintgotoneyet.

    I know Shaq’s retired but I thinks dusting off one of his gems fits pretty well…

    LeBronny, braggart, tell me how that Dirk taste?

    sportsreviewmagazine.com

  21. He made his own bed, now he gets to lie in it.

    He treated the city that loved him like Charlie Brown.
    Told them, they’d get first crack at his “talents”, knowing all along he was intending to pull a LeLucy and yank the football down to South Beach at the last minute.
    It’s not that he left…It’s the LeBronthy Weiner sized lie that’s the sideways part.

    Then the self corination spectacle, smoke and all.

    No one held a gun to his head and told him to say they were going to win 5, 6, 7, 8 championships. He said that on his own.

    Then to goof on Dirk’s cough, knowing full well the cameras were rolling…Right after he kicked your ass with a fever no less..

    And the cherry on top is telling Joe sports fan that called bullshit when they saw it that they get to go back to their shitty little lives while he goes back to his mansion wreaks of “let them eat cake” Queen LeMarie Aintgotoneyet.

    I know Shaq’s retired but I thinks dusting off one of his gems fits pretty well…

    LeBronny, braggart, tell me how that Dirk taste?

    sportsreviewmagazine,com

  22. Chris

    Any truth to the fact that CBS has commissioned another crime procedural drama that’s a spin off from ‘ CSI Miami’ ? It’s to be called “CSI Miami Heat —— Autopsy of A Crime ” . Jerry Bruckheimer won’t be looking for a professional cast of actors as he believes that the primary roles are already filled in James and Wade .

    James and Wade should now both look at themselves in the mirror rather than Le Wimp looking to apportion blame elsewhere for the team’s woes and futility in the Finals .

    You stated in your previous piece that the Lakers were heavily favored over the Pistons odds-wise . Be that as it may , remember that Lakers’ team had an aging ….. Malone and Payton ……….. who were past their primes . Here you have a Heat team heavily favored with two of the best players in the game on the same damn team plus Bosh who was simply along for the ride . There’s a massive difference here Chris which I think you’ve completely overlooked ! You weigh in the fact of the odds laid by Vegas who as we know make those odds to induce the bettors , remember that.

    tophatal ………

  23. Gee, I kind of feel sorry for Lebron. How is he ever going to get over being called a overrated, underachieving loser?
    Oh yea, by being an overpayed, overrated, and underachieving loser:)

  24. I don’t think that everybody was rooting for LBJ to succeed in Cleveland. Sure we wanted the Cavs to do well, because as a society we root for the underdog, but LBJ isn’t in there because no one likes a blowhard. You know what they say, “It ain’t bragging if you can back it up.” Well this guy has only proven one thing and that is he doesn’t play well with others. The first thing he needs to do to repair his image is to get rid of ALL his so-called advisers. You know, like whoever put it into his head to do that totally ridiculous one hour ESPN show, “The Decision.” As talented as the guy is on the court, its obvious that he isn’t exactly a rocket scientist. Hmm, maybe a few years of college would have helped him there. But then again, maybe he wouldn’t have even gotten through high school were it not for basketball. Just sayin.

  25. I agree with you that we never see footage of Lebron working out. Even in that commercial that shows like 20 players working out they didn’t put Lebron in it! It was good to see Curry practicing dribbling two balls though, that always happens in games!

  26. Where to start, where to start.

    Salsero…

    Three big names usually wins teams an NBA title, however, Riley still needs to fill in the remaining pieces of the puzzle.

    Technically, Bosh SHOULD be able to log some minutes at center and they still have Haslem who can do that. It’s not like they need a center to score, just someone that can log some minutes, grab some rebounds and keep opposing big men away from the basket.

    I’ve been harping on Spoelstra all-season long, confident he didn’t have what it took to win a title, at least not yet. His adjustments in this series were poor and I just don’t think he has the cojones to, for example, sit LeBron when he has a crappy night.

    How much would that have solved? How much respect would he have gained by doing something like that? Do you think Riles, back in the day, would have dealt with LeBron pussy-footing around in the fourth quarter?

    I don’t think Howard will end up in Miami. They don’t have the money to pay him. But he will keep an eye on what they do and know that in the upcoming years, that will be the team to contend with in the Eastern Conference.

  27. Chris…

    I think that’s everyone’s biggest problem with him.

    Look, we all know superstar athletes have egos. We want them to keep our feelings in consideration but rarely does that happen.

    I can’t say I entirely disagree with Bleed’s comments. LeBron showed his ass, but then again, this wasn’t the first time he’s done so.

    Maybe we should get used to it.

    Pretty funny that Cleveland sports bars were all rooting for Dallas.

  28. Bleed…

    Sorry for those duplicate comments. Let me know if you were having problems with the site.

    I just figured you were outspoken enough on the LeBron issue that you wanted to let everyone know how you really felt.

  29. Chris

    chappy says we never see footage of LBJ working out ? Of course he works out every time his face on camera lauding himself as to what he wants to be and he wants to be viewed by the fans. That’s his workout anything else would be beneath him and uncivilized . I mean that was something of a workout with Jim Gray all but licking every orifice of LBJ’s during the “Decision Interview” .

    So Pete Carroll is now saying that the NCAA overstepped its boundaries by punishing the USC program with impunity ? Did I miss something here but where was Carroll and AD Mike Garrett when all this s##t was going down with Bush , Mayo and others while he was football coach ? I mean it’s not as if then basketball coach Tim Floyd couldn’t wait to hand out a couple of hundred dollars to Mayo and a subordinate of his knowing full well that it violated NCAA rules .

    So Drew Next Question Rosenhaus has signed Terrelle Pryor as his client ? Why am I not surprised and which GM in the NFL will now take a flier on the kid knowing the baggage that comes along with him ?

    tophatal …………….

  30. 1) LeBron James is his own worst enemy – shut the f-ck up and play basketball.

    2) If you want top be a player that matters, you have to play when it matters.

    3) The next person who says “LeBron on the Lakers” will be shot in the face.

  31. My post from another forum:

    ——————————————————————————–

    I think his foundation needs strengthening. No father figure and mother that is allegedly boffing the locker room. Also, he might try marriage with a Glenn Lerner pre-nuptial. Semi-settling down might bring some him some stability on all fronts.

    Oh, btw, ESPN, talk radio, Colin Cowherd, STFU. When these baffoons first opened up it was useful info. Prob is when they run outta of it they fabricate, speculate and hardly ever retract the BS

  32. In this age of the uninformed leading the conversations on sports luminaries, one point becomes crystal clear. The best basketball player in the game’s history, the inimitable Michael Jordan, never had to put up with the nonsense that today’s stars must bear. They get paid extremely well but that only proves we will pay to watch them: it has nothing to with giving us the knowledge to judge them. I personally believe if Pat Riley had been the Heat’s coach this year, they’d have won. He’s been there and done that. I don’t confess to knowing how he did it back in the day with Kareem and Magic, but win he did. No one will ever be able to measure up to Jordan any more than anyone has been able, steroids aside, to best Babe Ruth. Let the athletes perform, let the fans comment, but don’t ever mistake the will of one with the envy of the other.

  33. It wasn’t just LeBron hate, it was Heat hate. You don’t build a team the way they did, and I’m not just talking about the Big Twee. Ilgauskas, Miller, Bibby, House and probably more names but I don’t know ’em because I didn’t watch much basketball this year. I don’t like where the NBA is going (Stern hate…now THAT”s a topic) and I’m predicting no 2011-12 season.

  34. Before Lebron went to Miami I wouldn’t pull for them (or any team from Miami) against the communist China basketball team! But Lebron has tried to make himself bigger than the game itself with his “King James” nick name and all the ridiculous commercials over the years. I’m sick of him being compared to MJ and that he’s one of the greates players ever. He’s one of the most talented but he has a long way to go before he can be considered great! Until then, he can shut up and go back to picking up the jock straps of Dirk, Koby, Duncan, MJ, etc! I’m hoping he’s the Barry Bonds of the NBA. No titles!

  35. Chris,

    HELL YES I would want LeBron on the Lakers…If I can overlook Kobe forcing himself into orafices he shouldn’t be and running Shaq out of town, I can get over LeBron’s 4th quarter meltdowns, diarrhia of the mouth and massive ego….We wouldn’t need him to be a closer here.

    His skills aren’t the problem, his tude and sense of entitlement are.

    No problems with the site, I’m diggin it…I was just was confused as to why it didn’t post …Hence the double post…I figured it was lost in space somewhere…I was surprised how close I came to the original comments LOL…I guess since Janet’s wardrobe malfunction I should have expected a delay.

  36. Al…

    I think that’s one thing we can all agree on. Wade and LeBron do have some soul-searching to do this summer.

    And I know that’s how Vegas makes their lines, which is why I’m up for the playoffs.

  37. Aer…

    It’s exactly that kind of sentiment that I think might earn BronBron a fan base back.

    Gotta take your lumps and boy, is he taking ’em.

  38. Cleveland by its very nature, Snake, is an underdog, even if they boasted the “best player in the game.”

    Just like the Cubs winning the World Series, and of course I’m speaking theoretically since that won’t happen until they allow Mark Cuban to buy that team, I don’t think anyone would have had a problem with the Cavs winning a title.

    Hey, the majority of fringe fans were not only rooting AGAINST LeBron, but were rooting FOR Dallas because of guys like Kidd and Dirk who had never won it before.

  39. Chap…

    So where does LeBron disappear to over these next few months just to get away?

    I mean, he is a global icon. So where can he get away where he won’t be recognized?

    And what’s the over/under on how soon he picks up a basketball?

  40. Al…

    Maybe USC, OSU, UT and a few others can play in the losers/suspended bracket come bowl season.

    And do you think Tressel rues the day he got Pryor to come to Columbus or was he merely overlooking violations all along?

  41. Bullshit walks, huh, Dub?

    Can’t say any of us disagree with that.

    Poor work ethic + sense of entitlement + lack of clutch gene does not bode well for NBA greatness.

  42. Ronbets…

    You’re not suggesting LeBron shack up before he’s ready, are you?

    We all know how that worked out for Tiger Woods. I’d say that’s the LAST thing he needs right now.

    Besides, we all thought Dwyane Wade was his muse.

  43. Jimbo…

    Let us not forget that, even though Michael’s domination came pre-internet, the media was still rough on him for his alleged gambling problems and infidelities.

    Of course, not nearly as hard as they’re being on LeBron today for merely not living up to expectations.

    Also don’t forget that even though Riley won with that Lakers team, he also never got his Knicks over the hump.

    It was clear that the Heat needed LeBron to rise above. Riles was there for all of that, waiting in the wings. He easily could have ‘coached’ LeBron through that mess as he has Wade over the years. That didn’t happen. I don’t think that would have been stepping on Spoelstra’s toes, and if so, who cares.

    There was clearly something wrong with the kid’s head and nothing was done about it. Now one more chance at a ring is gone.

  44. Elizabeth…

    No 2011-12 season?

    Now I’ll be having nightmares, thank you very much.

    Hey, if they need scabs, I’m in.

    I won’t be buying the LeBron training video to work on my game, however.

    No WAY I’d make a team then.

  45. Chris

    I’ve still got buddies down South and apparently on the sports talk radio stations down there at present they’re p##ed that James and other Heat players were seen having fun with the Mavs at a South Beach night club and taking pics alongside the Larry O’Brien Trophy along with the Mavs’ players. Perhaps someone should remind those idiot radio hosts had Miami played better then it’d have been the other way around ?

    I don’t think that Tressel rues the day Pryor stepped unto the campus of OSU , more the case that Pryor couldn’t keep a lower profile . Now you’ve got Rosenhaus hyping up Pryor like he’ll be the second coming of Montana and Young all rolled into one ? Are you kidding me ? Next question ? LOL,LOL,LOL !!!

    I hear that they will now erect a flaccid phallic symbol in the greater Cleveland area denoting their feelings about LeBron ? Signs of the fact that the fans there still have utter disdain for the player ?

    ESPN is now reporting that both sides in the NFL dispute are now closer than ever in reaching an accord . Yeah , put two dozen lawyers in a room with a bunch of greedy a##ed owners players and I am sure somehow they can come to an accord . Like hell they will . If there’s no agreement by the 14th July I think that there’ll be a shortened season anywhere between 8 to ten games at best !

    If you’re Otis Smith your job now has got to be on the line . If Howard doesn’t resign with the Magic can you imagine the outrage in Orlando and fans of the team around the state ?

    tophatal ………..

  46. Laine Kiffin and Bruce Pearl no longer want to speak publicly as to the problems they encountered and created at their previous places of employment . But somehow Pete Carroll wants to chastise the NCAA for what he believes to be the harsh punishment doled out to USC . What am I missing here ? LOL,LOL,LOL !!!

    tophatal ……….

  47. That Deadspin piece was the BEST EVER. Maybe a tad harsh but every bit of it was true.

  48. Look, Al.

    Miami’s going to be criticized until they win a title. In fact, I might venture to say that winning only one, if they even get that many, will be considered underachieving.

    Before we throw stones, let us not forget that some of those guys, Kidd, Wade, James all played together on the Olympic team, so they’re friends. The city would have probably only been happy had James gone home and committed hari-kari.

    And if Howard doesn’t re-sign with Orlando, Al, well, I’ll just be speechless.

  49. Al…

    Carroll’s in a different position the other two.

    Kiffin’s still employed at USC and Pearl will probably land another college job so neither of them want to bite the hand that feeds them.

    There’s no way in hell Carroll’s going back to college so he can pretty much say whatever the hell he wants.

  50. Chris

    I know that they’re all friends but this merely shows you the mentality of the sports radio talk show host down south in Miami . Those guys would make the conservative radio talk show hosts seem redundant .

    Carroll is merely gloating because he wasn’t put under the wringer by the investigators of the NCAA Infractions’ Committee .

    It’s going to be touch and go concerning Dwight resigning with the Magic . See this link to see how dumb a#s the moves were by Otis Smith have been a detriment to the Magic . Third highest payroll in the league last season and the league is meant to have a hard salary cap ?

    The team is on the hook for so much money (salary wise ) that even if they buy out some of these contracts they’d still be in deep financial trouble . Bear in mind that the Magic has been loaned in excess of $65 million by the NBA hierarchy over the last two seasons as part of Stern’s alleged bailout . LOL,LOL,LOL !!! But yet the Amway Center built at the cost of $470 million through bonds issued by the city of Orlando and Orange County jointly . But somehow with both governmental agencies having multi million dollar budget deficits they went out of their way to make sure that edifice was built with team owner Rick De Vos (co founder of Amway and a multi billionaire) not even paying one red cent towards the cost .

    I’ll be dropping a piece on this concerning Dwight re-signing with the team or not . I’ll do the usual in terms of a notification .

    tophatal …………..

  51. Chris

    The NBA salary cap for the 2010-11 season was meant to be $57.75 million but look at the payroll of the top five teams as provided in the link but some how teams within the league lost money ? It was simply wasn’t because of the downturn of the economy that’s for sure .

  52. Al…

    I wonder if Dwight and Otis greet each other properly when passing in the hallway or whether it’s just a polite nod.

    Either way, if I were Otis, I’d be kissing the big man’s ass to get him to stay.

    As you recall, I was vehemently opposed to that trade AND DIDN’T EVEN BRING UP THE SALARY CAP IMPLICATIONS!

    The Magic are financially handcuffed and Dwight would be wise to listen to all legitimate offers that might bring him closer to his goal of winning a championship.

  53. Al…

    That’s what scares me. From everything I’m reading, the NBA is likely to have another shortened season.

    Then when the Heat win it all next year, Phil Jackson can say their championship too, has an asterisk.

  54. Chris

    The Magic are handcuffed ? If it gets any worse they’ll have to plead with Obama for a bailout ? De Vos , has let his son in law Bob Vanderweide (team’s CEO/President) and Smith run wild like a postal worker with a shotgun. Even if they buyout some of those contracts that team is still in a mess .

    Shortened season in the NBA and quite possibly a shortened season in the NFL . Oh well there’s always College Football to look forward to and all corrupt practices that goes on there . I wonder if former Mountaineers’ coach Bill Smith actually was able to get any pictures of his now successor Dana Holgorsen sodomizing a farm animal ? Can you actually believe that a coach asked the press to dig up dirt on Holgorsen (whatever it takes do that ) in order to prolong his tenure as the coach ? And I thought that Rich Rod’ was a scumbag in the way he left the program ? Boy was I wrong !

    tophatal ……….

  55. The Heat roster will be overhauled in the off season . The Big One And A Half Men Will remain there but beyond that who knows ?

    The cba in the NBA expires June 30th and from thereon in it becomes a crap shoot as neither union President Derek Fisher or its Executive Director Billy Hunter are prepared to make any major monetary concessions . The split now between the league and players is 53/47 in the players’ favor but Stern and the owners want more in their favor with certain other rollbacks also .

    Why not simply have the main guys on each side fight it out in cage match … no holds barred ? I’d pay to see that !

    With Phil retiring I doubt he’ll be taking that much notice of the NBA ! He’ll be too busy waxing Jeanie Buss’ assets .

  56. Al…

    Orlando Magic fans might be hoping for a shortened NBA season then. It’ll mean less games we’ll have to watch the team underachieve.

    And again, why does that West Virginia story surprise you? Can I believe a coach worried about his job would seek dirt about his potential successor?

    Uh… Yeah!

  57. Al…

    I don’t know how Miami’s going to overhaul. Are they going to ask free agents to come and play with another set of underachievers for league minimum? Are there going to be players out there who are thinking to themselves “Yeah, I can make LeBron better. Let me do so for a mil a year?”

    I guess we’ll see, huh.

  58. Chris

    We’ll see something but I’m not so sure it’ll be the Heat raising the O’Brien Trophy . The Heat have been found wanting and in this regard one has to see what happens concerning the league and the union concerning the CBA and whether or not the salary cap will be raised or lowered . They’re at loggerheads at present concerning the concessions the hierarchy wants from the NBPA.

    In the East we’ve seen a number of teams improve and I’ve no doubt given the proclivity of the GM’s within the conference we’ll see their teams improve. Riley has never been a great assessor of college talent to begin with as he prefers to have players that are veterans. I mean what did the young players do in terms of productivity during the regular and postseason ? Not a goddamn thing !

    Once those issues are sorted out with regard to the labor issues we may well see how things pan out .

    tophatal ……….

  59. Chris

    So Canucks fans really know how to parrttty ? 150 arrests and over 100 injured ……never mind the monetary loss to business and damages . All over a damn series’ loss ?

    tophatal …………….

  60. Al…

    I really wrote this piece to gauge the sentiment out there and from the looks of these comments, I was spot on.

    I posted this piece in hoops forum and they’re STILL arguing about it.

    I do think that losing will earn BronBron a few more fans, ya know, the whole you gotta earn it thing. But there will still be plenty of haters out there.

    Can you imagine how thick it’ll get if they DON’T win it all next year?

  61. Yeah, Al, I didn’t get that whole Vancouver thing?

    What the hell were they rioting for? They know they lost, right?

    Oh, and is Boston the new titletown? All four teams have won titles in the past ten years.

  62. Nice piece Rev, but as an Ohioan I can’t see our celebration for Lebron’s failure fading until after the draft. I believe that many of us will move on after we grab a couple of decent building blocks on draft day and we start all over again.

    Do you want to know the worst part of the entire deal? Dusty called this “Legone” thing two years before it went down. He had Lebron’s charcter pegged back then and we didn’t want to hear it.

    How does Dirk get away with taking three steps? Is it just my eyes playing tricks? I could swear that Dirk takes three steps when driving in the paint.

  63. ET…

    LeBron’s definitely reached Modell-like hatred in that town.

    Let me guess. Dusty’s left hundred’s of coments telling everyone how he was right all along. Hard to imagine.

    And that’s because Dirk’s a bug Lynyrd Skynyrd fan. “Gimme three steps, gimme three steps, baby, gimme three steps toward the door!”

  64. Rev,

    I haven’t seen the old Duster in ages, but I know that he’s probably been hanging out on cloud #6 ever since Lebron pulled up his tent stakes.

    In retrospect, Lebron’s previous playoff failures always left the fanbase feeling as if all the Cavs’ eggs were in the Lebron basket, as if they didn’t have enough talent surrounding him to reach the summit and Lebron’s camp was always insisting as much following the end of the last four seasons.

    There were times when we believed that Lebron was “acting GM” during the offseason as he attempted to lure the players of his choice to Cleveland.

    Only Lebron can shut up the haters by proving that he has what it takes to be the “King” that he has always proclaimed himself to be.

  65. ET…

    I’m not entirely convinced those Cavs teams, or at least his supporting cast, were as bad as everyone made them out to be.

    Again, the jury is still out on LeBron and his identity on the court.

    He’s no Type A, that’s for sure.

  66. Rev,

    You and 99.9% of Cavs fans, we just didn’t realize it until the Mavs got all up in Lebron’s head, like the Celt’s did and the Magic also did in previous seasons.

    I think we saw what it takes to get Lebron to fold his tent. Game 2, the 15 point lead was erased and the Mav’s evened it up, “fire in the hole” and they blew his whole game apart.

    Our governor declared the Mav’s players honorary citizens. It’s kind of hard to defuse the hate when government officials are leading the band. The same guy wore an Ohio State polo when golfing with Obama, just a bit on the ironic side.

    Who would you take with the #1 pick? Williams or the Duke player?

    Williams is kind of making waves already about being the first overall, saying that if he’s not #1 then he’ll make the team pay later on down the road. I think his charade is hurting his cause with the Cav’s more than helping it. I think they’re going to shy away from the “loud & proud” instead of embracing it.

  67. I think that’s part of the problem, ET. Not only do we expect our basketball superstars to be physical specimens, but also mentally unflappable. That’s what it takes to get to the mountaintop in the Association and while Bronbron has mastered one of those, he’s certainly lacking in the other.

    I’m also not entirely sure your local politicians are acting proper by thumbing their nose in this guy’s face. What is this? Nanny nanny boo boo?

    I think I’d have to go with Williams as the top pick. Can’t coach height, but then again, I’d have to see their workouts.

  68. Pingback: Sports Chump » SportsChump takes his talents to South Beach

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