Let me just first off say that I’m not the biggest LeBron James supporter. Do I respect his talents? Yes. He’s easily the best basketball player in the world right now. In my eyes, you can’t make an argument for anyone else to be the best in the world. Do I respect his off the court decisions? Absolutely not. The way he embarrassed Cleveland in 2010 was one of the most disrespectful things I’ve ever seen. If you’re going to announce that you’re leaving, do it at a press conference or at least tell the team in advance that you’re not coming back. Having your own special on ESPN was not the right way to go for LeBron, and he lost a lot of respect from it.
So LeBron leaves Cleveland, wins two MVP’s, makes it to four straight finals, and wins two titles. Meanwhile, the Cavaliers have been the worst team overall these past four years, earning three number one picks in that time. So why would anyone want to leave a place where you’ve won titles at for a city that not only hasn’t won a major sports title in over 50 years, but still hates you for your “Decision” you made four years ago?
Why Lebron would want to go back to Cleveland makes no sense to me. I understand it’s LeBron’s hometown (although he’s really from Akron), but I don’t know if I would want to walk back into that organization after all the stuff that went down after the decision. From fans burning jerseys, his big “We are all witnesses” sign being brought down, and owner Dan Gilbert’s letter proclaiming “I personally guarantee that the Cleveland Cavaliers will win an NBA championship before the self-titled former ‘king’ wins one.” Overall, the way LeBron left Cleveland was not good, and fans still haven’t forgiven him for that.
Also, if LeBron goes back to Cleveland, it makes him look like even more of a sellout in my eyes. Him going back to Cleveland would just prove that he isn’t willing to stick it out during the tough times, even if those tough times really aren’t that bad. If you didn’t know otherwise, you’d think Miami was the worst team in the league last year given how much it seems he wants to go. Do people forget that this team was competing for a championship and a three-peat just three weeks ago? That Miami won two championships in the two years prior to that? That they made the finals their first year together despite not having a lot of chemistry and the enormous pressure put on them? The Heat have arguably been the best team in the NBA the last four years, yet it seems everyone but Dwyane Wade wants to leave.
It’s only been four years since LeBron “took his talents to South Beach,” and all he’s done in his four years there is win. In three less seasons in Miami, he’s won the same amount of MVP’s as he did in Cleveland, more playoff series (14-8), and more titles (2-0). If he returns to Miami, he’ll mostly have the same supporting cast, along with free agent signings Josh McRoberts and Danny Granger, who are two solid pickups for Miami. Granger plays the same position as LeBron, so it’ll help reduce LeBron’s minutes during the season, keeping him relatively fresh for a postseason run. The Heat also drafted Shabazz Napier, a player LeBron loves and actually tweeted about during the NBA Draft, saying “My favorite player in the draft! #Napier.” Plus, LeBron wants to win now, and Miami gives him that place to win at.
I know personally, if Derrick Rose were to leave the Chicago Bulls the way LeBron left Cleveland, I’d have a hard time letting him come back. If he had gone on national TV the way LeBron did and said he was going to go somewhere else, I’d have a hard time bringing him back after four years.
But that’s the difference between guys like Rose and LeBron. I truly believe that Derrick Rose will never leave the Bulls. He’s from Chicago, went to high school in Chicago, and will do anything to win a championship for that city, even if he has to win it by himself. LeBron, on the other hand, made a mockery of Cleveland in 2010 but now apparently wants to return to be the city’s savior. I just don’t get it. If I were a Cleveland fan, I don’t know if I would want LeBron back. I’d love to have a guy of his talent, but could you ever truly forgive him for what happened four years ago?
In short, I hated LeBron for going to Miami and ditching Cleveland the way he did. If he now ditches Miami to go back to the city he originally ditched, it would just take another hit to his credibility and his overall legacy in my eyes as one of the greatest players of all time.
Thanks for reading. Make sure to check out the other blogs I’ve posted, and stay tuned as I go more in-depth on all the things going on in the sports world. This is Game of Sports.