LeBron James makes it so easy

James walks out after bowing in Game 5
(image by Mark Ralston/Getty Images)
So I used to like LeBron. I did. Swear.

Here was a guy pressured to be the best, or the “Chosen One,” since he was a preppy – a guy so overwhelmingly talented he could take over any game at will. Outwardly, he was a man among boys, but in terms of maturity he was, well, just a boy. And the people around him who were supposed to give him sound advice? Boys too.

During better days
(image from hoopspeak.com)
But he still started his NBA career on the right foot, at least I believe so. Here was a young man whose shoulders carried the burden of superstardom, and then he also had to prop up the championship dreams of his home state – a home state infamous for some of the most unfortunate twists in professional sports history. There was something romantic, heroic, about LeBron. He was thrust into something bigger than himself, but he soldiered on. I’d like to believe he did it out of idealism, but perhaps he did it because it was good marketing.

And he labored. For 7 years the Cavs saw ups and downs with their superstar – a man they could truly call their own. But, again, they couldn’t get over the hump. No championships. Loads of heartaches. Nobody could help LeBron give Ohio its due. Not Boobie Gibson. Not Anderson Varejao. Not Larry Hughes. Not Antawn Jamison. Not Mo Williams.

Or, in hindsight, maybe it’s this – he wasn’t able to bring out the best in any of those players. There was always stardom where LeBron went. Sounds and lights. A parade of suits. Fandom. But was there any magic? Any sort of unquantifiable element that just endeared everyone around him?

Perhaps not.

But he was still, shall we say, admirable.

And then he made The Decision.

I reckon he made it because he was afraid of never winning one – afraid Cleveland would never build a team worthy of his Kingship. Fear.

And we all know where Fear eventually leads right? Ask Yoda.

A clear analogy for what James has become
Now the heroic one becomes the villainous one. The sell out. The guy who ditches the fans who stayed with him at his lowest for the promise, or premise, of a championship.

And of course this happens too:

(image from Yahoo! Sports)
Ayayay LeBron. You make hating what you've become so easy. I’m sure you’re a good-hearted fellow. You want to help you family and friends. You contribute to your neighborhood. You have charities left and right. But the way you’re chasing that title? It sucks, man.

This is so old school of me, but I always thought the most bad-ass way for a superstar to win a title was to stay with the team that drafted him, struggle together, choose to stay for some more, struggle some more, stay, struggle. And somewhere somehow he’d win. Or if not, he’d be so great, so loved, it wouldn’t even really matter if he didn’t win. But I guess I’m just rationalizing.

In all honesty, though, I’m scared too. I’m scared that LeBron will win Games 6 and 7, that he will get that ring doing the things he did. And then “the Year of LeBron” will be the template for winning in the NBA. Throw out parity. Throw out all manner of idealism. It’s all about winning after all. It’s not about setting an example.

At least KG, Pierce and Allen came together after spending more than a decade trying “on their own.” Now it’s about creating the next biggest mini-All-Star team of twenty-somethings. It’s NBA Live only real.

Oh, but I’m rationalizing again.

Rationalizing why, LeBron, you make it so easy for anyone not necessarily to love the Mavericks, but to simply say, “Anyone but Miami.”

Anyone but Miami.

Another reason "King James" is a heel:

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