Monday, June 13th, 2011...11:17 pm
I know as much, or as little, of what ails Lebron James as you do. A bunch of talented sportswriters went all Fraud and dissected the dethronement of the King. The Sports Section blog summarizes the media reaction. The Sports Guy also brilliantly lays it down in his Game 6 retro diary (better reading than the rest of this blog post).
It hit me as soon as I realized that Miami was going to actually lose this series. Lebron James is not special. Sure, he is ultra talented. Perhaps the most talented athlete I’ll ever “witness”. But he is not going to change the world. He will not bring peace to the Middle East. He is the not the greatest to ever play the game. He is not Michael Jordan. He might not even be a winner. Heck, I might even forget all about him when I’m telling my great grandkids all about Ron Artest.
My bet is that Lebron will get over the hump with the right supporting cast and win a few championships. Kind of like Rip Hamilton, Vernon Maxwell and Tony Parker did. Not that long ago, everybody went bonkers because Alex Rodriguez kept on choking in the post-season. Then he had a few clutch hits in the 2009 World Series and the world moved on. Even as he approaches the all-time Home Run record, A-Rod is now just an after thought.
I’ve never in my life rooted against a team. It seems counter productive. But for most of this year I found myself rooting against the Heat. Yet as I did, I secretly wanted Lebron to stick it to everybody; the media, the crybaby Cleveland fans, and all the haters who jumped on the jealousy bandwagon. I kind of wanted his greatness to beat us all into submission. I kind of wanted his life to be awesome as my life sucked (apparently that still will happen). I kind of wanted to see him flip the bird to the world as he lifted the Larry O’Briend trophy over his head for each of the next eight straight seasons as lovable German foes helplessly coughed up phlegm balls in agonizing defeat.
You must understand, we sports fans just want to see cool stuff. We are all instigators. We want to see perfection OR the destruction of perfection. (Who cares if you dope as long as you keep on winning Lance, you cancer survivor, you!) We were lucky enough to watch both unfold all season long with Lebron and the Miami Heat. As this series progressed I kept waiting for him to do something crazy. The media scrutiny added fuel to the fire! Good or bad, I wanted to see Lebron burst into a sea of 5 Hour Energy.
But nothing happened. NOTHING HAPPENED. Unless you’re a fan of the game hot potato it was one of the biggest anti-climatic let downs in sports history. Even mighty Casey went down swinging! Lebron took three strikes looking!
In a blink of an eye (actually, it was a thirty minute ESPN special), Lebron went from the Hulk to Hollywood Hogan. Last night he turned from Hollywood Hogan to Terry Gene Bollea.
I’m sure Lebron will still be a huge news story for the next decade. But I’m over it. He’s just another A-Rod. I, for one, like my superstars cooked up with extra character and charisma.
Lebron is no longer fascinating.