Monday, June 13, 2011

Taking His FAIL To South Beach

He's the King alright.

The King of "Still Doesn't Get It."

For all of LeBron James' considerable talents - undeniable and spectacular - perhaps his biggest talent is the ability to live in a universe that is completely un-related to one everybody else lives in.

Just when I thought LeBron was saying all the right things, growing up in front of our eyes, he uncorks a "hater's rebuttal" last night that fell as flat as a 28-foot desperation airball.

"Absolutely not, because at the end of the day, all the people that were rooting on me to fail, at the end of the day, they have to wake up tomorrow and have the same life that they had before they woke up today," James said. "They have the same personal problems they had today. I'm going to continue to live the way I want to live and continue to do the things that I want to do with me and my family and be happy with that."

In other words: "You people suck, and I'm still rich and famous. Suck on that."

What James still can't comprehend - and sadly, many of the Miami Heat cultists now trying to spin this debacle - is that people aren't rooting against him PER SE, they are rooting against everything LeBron James and the Heat STAND FOR in sports today.

Flash over substance.
Celebrations before accomplishment.
Immaturity before class.
Hype before humility.

American sports fans are a pretty forgiving lot, all things considered. Most wanted Pete Rose forgiven and re-instated, many still want Tiger Woods to make a comeback, and even athletes nearly convicted of rape and murder (Kobe Bryant and Ray Lewis) can be re-habilitated to the point where they are once again marketable spokesmen in their sports.

So trust me, LeBron is not that far from being liked - even loved - if he can just get it through his dense, overly indulged, juvenile brain.

a. You have to win.
b. You have to at least fake some humility.
c. You have to be honest about your shortcomings.

Stop flopping like a soccer playing girl from the movie "Ladybugs."
Stop making excuses for everything that doesn't go right.
Stop acting like a child while trying to "diss" an opposing player.

I think most satisfying of all, is that what Miami tried to do - while perfectly legal - is only "do-able" in about 4 or 5 NBA cities at best. You need a playground for the rich and famous as your home city (Miami, check, Cleveland, ha!). You need a super deep pocketed owner who doesn't mind perhaps actually losing money in the short run on a very expensive team. And you need one superstar already installed, and another one willing to take slightly less money.

On top of all that, you need an NBA salary "cap" that is more flexible than Plastic Man.

In short, this is no "model" for success that other teams would be wise to try to replicate. In fact, they can't. Half the league can barely attract as single "B" level free agent, much less THREE "A" level guys.

But this will all be addressed in the coming lockout. The NBA should re-calibrate the league so that guys can make a fabulous living playing professional basketball, stuck to the city they are drafted by for the term of their first contract, and make leaving via free agency a serious consideration that is not a "have my cake and eat it too" scenario like Carmelo Anthony engineered this season.

Keep teams on a true "hard cap" and make them feel the consequences of stupid signings.

Then, and only then, you'll have a league. Right now, you have a reality show. And like a dew-eyed bachelorette getting pwned on the final episode by a dude who leaves her high and dry, this LeBron Debacle was some of the sweetest schadenfruede pie - evah!


  1. this was all just a gigantic, elaborate iron sheik vs. sgt. slaughter storyline set up with a "decision" last summer by david stern and his chief television partners in bristol, connecticut...congratulations to 99.5% of the casual sheep water cooler sports fans in this country for falling for this time-tested vince mcmahon scheme hook, line & sinker...punked, duped, etc;...the ultimate goal was ratings through the roof on television's most watched night...the almighty dollar and corporate america win again!

  2. Love the comment Czabe. Lebron will never win a championship because he does not possess that killer instinct. Micheal had it, Kobe has it, Larry had it, Magic had it. Once he realizes that it is not about himself and like you said he at shows some fake humility he will never be a champion. I am tired of the crybaby attitude and the constant antithesis of sportsmanship the general public keeps buying. So glad the heat lost. Look to Dirk: a professional.

  3. Can we just refer to Lebron as "LeDouche" from now on ?

  4. Had Dirk made fun of LeBron or Wade the way they did to him, how quickly would people have started screaming "racist!" But it's ok to do it to a 6'10" nerdy-looking white guy... I can't stand the NBA but watching Miami lose made even my sports-hating wife happy.

  5. I would have been happy, and not rooting for LeBron to fail anymore, had he taken the loss with any humility at all.

    That comment is so far gone from reality, and so damn self-absorbed, it's just plain absurd. I can't believe that anyone would have thought that rambling statement was anything even remotely close to resembling a good idea.

    Of course, Billy Madison had the better quote:
    LeBron, "what you've just said ... is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this room is now dumber for having listened to it. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul."

    And I'll enjoy watching this infant lose until he grows up.

  6. If you never saw an ESPN SportsCenter, LeBron highlight show, and just watched him play games, you would never think to include him among the games best players. There are times in games where you didn't even realize he was on the court; this was never the case with any of the greats and certainly isn't the case with DWade, Novitzky, Rose, and other impact players of today.

    LeBron is a product of our sports culture and in many ways reflects so many of the problems not only in sports, but in our country. This is not blaming him for larger cultural problems, but recognizing that he is a product of a flawed system.

  7. Q. Why can't LeBron James make change for a dollar?
    A. Because he's only good for 3 quarters.

    Q. Why didn't LeBron James go to college?
    A. Because he always chokes during the finals.

    Thanks to my brother, James, a native Clevelander, for relaying those gems.