There are no links this morning. I just don’t feel like doing it.
I’m upset with LeBron James. Go ahead, close your fucking browser and leave this page, I’m sure you’re tired of hearing about it.
As a Cleveland Cavaliers fan, I am distraught that LeBron James figured it all out. He’s there, one game away from reaching the summit that has eluded him for this long. But this isn’t even necessary about the bigger prize, it’s about the way he is doing it. With every completely focused defensive possession and every completely unstoppable post-up move, a little bit of my spirit dies. Unless something catastrophic happens in the next three days, LeBron is going to do the one thing I wanted him to do when he was in Cleveland: figure it out.
This isn’t some bullshit about me hating LeBron because he is lacking as a player. I’ve always known he was great. Many well-reasoned Cavs fans, like myself, understood that besides all the anger about The Decision, we were really just mad that LeBron was taking some of our joy away. He was just so fucking good that Cavs basketball would become less enjoyable to watch with him gone.
For a year? It did. Watching the Cavs’ epic losing streak the first year after LeBron left, coupled with much of the success the Heat had, it made it painful to watch basketball. Then Cavs fans were delivered two little slivers of sunshine: the Dallas Mavericks and Kyrie Irving. The latter is easy to understand. To explain the former, I offer you this: To this day, I will still say fuck all the people who mocked Cavs fans for being happy when the Mavs won. They could never understand how cathartic that was for a Cleveland fan. Miami was given something great and it failed. Cleveland has endured an eternity of losing. We just didn’t want anyone to have it easy.
As long as that failure and the “LeBron fails again in a pressure situation” narrative went on, it made me feel good. Fuck that guy. Through his actions (whether he meant it or not is inconsequential), he stole the heart of a fan community.
Then this season something changed. He became focused and stopped saying stupid shit. His brand took a back seat to his real brand: his on-court ability. LeBron has always put up numbers and that was never my argument against him. Just in the past his numbers didn’t come with focus and drive. Now they did.
I know this might be a ridiculous argument, but I feel like angry Cleveland fans, Kobe “COUNT DA RINGZZZZZZZZZZZZZ” fans and just general run-of-the-mill haters have pushed LeBron to this level. Without the hate, I’m not sure he would get to this place. When you’re a pro athlete at the top of your game, you need to find the motivation to push you to do better. You have money, fame and a perfect off-the-court life, but need something to drive you in the games. Brady and Manning had each other, Magic and Larry had each other too and Jordan had the anger he carried from perceived slights. These are a few brief modern examples, but the list certainly goes on. There came a point where LeBron had to put all the bullshit aside and just fucking destroy people to shut the angry mob up. He is doing that now.
It hurts. It honestly stings. I’ll be watching the rest of the series to see if he can pull it off. If he does, it ends all of this. Cleveland fans and LeBron both goes their separate ways and move on. Cleveland fans lose the one dumb argument they had against him on the court (LeChoke, LeBrick, etc.) and LeBron can finally figuratively say ‘how my ass taste?’.
Honestly? Both of us are probably better for it.