The Cleveland Cavaliers have a tradition of almost making it big. In other words, the Cavs has a tradition of LOSING. Basketball connoisseurs such as me, we know this. Hardcore fans and coaches know this. The league’s best player without a championship ring, Lebron James knows this. While it would be a great thing for the hometown star to bring a championship to the state in which he was bred culminating in the ultimate fairy tale career, logic isn’t on the side of that dream. For Lebron James also knows that fairy tales do NOT exist and by staying in Cleveland, all he would do is lose time.
Do you think that it doesn’t tear this man up to watch Kobe Bryant and the Lakers win every year? All the time it’s: who’s better Kobe or Lebron; Lebron or Kobe… well, the answer is simple. Kobe Bryant is the best player in the league, hands down. If you want to argue, just look as his right hand. There are five rings on that bad boy. On Lebron’s hand, there are none.
Besides the obvious love of his home town, why in his right mind would Lebron want to actually remain a Cavalier? Seriously, I mean everybody loves Shaq, but even the Diesel knows when to hang up his shoes. He won’t be back, and the rest of that team? I already forgot the players; that’s how good the Cleveland Cavaliers are. It’s safe to say Mr. James will NOT be returning.
Where SHOULD he go? Well, let’s look at the contenders… or pretenders, depending on your basketball knowledge.
New York has talked a GANG of mess about them wanting Lebron in a Knicks jersey. Sure, they can pay the man; hell, they can pay him AND another top free agent a max contract, but after Lebron and that agent when else do the Knicks have to offer? This man is on the 8th year of his NBA career, he’s not interested in waiting another 2-3 years for that horrible Knicks franchise to build a squad around him and his perennial Scottie Pippen. If that’s the case, he could stay in Cleveland; face it, nobody even likes the Knicks. The damn Knicks don’t even like the Knicks, how else can you explain them putting Isaiah Freaking Thomas, a FORMER DETRIOT PISTON (of all people) in charge of their front office a few years ago. The allure of New York City? Come on man…. This is the NBA and Lebron James, not Sex and the City and Carrie Bradshaw.
The Clippers? No, not the Clippers… It’s bad enough that he has to live in the shadow of the great Kobe Bryant (until he gets some rings, that is) but do you really thinks he wants to play in the same city, in the same arena as dude on a team that is forever cursed?
The Nets? Same problem as with New York, but the New Jersey/Brooklyn Nets are actually in worse shape than the Knicks have ever been, and realistically a good 4-5 years away from being competitive.
The Heat? Ok, there is some talent down there. Dwayne Wade is a beast for the Heat, but again, after him, what’s left? Yes, they have a more complete team than the Clippers, Cavs, Knicks and Nets, and a hell of a coach (Pat Riley is talking comeback) but I don’t see the egos meshing well down there. Wade already showed his ass in the media when he badmouthed the Bulls franchise and questioned their loyalty to former players (an argument that he lost, by the way) like a damn hypocrite (he’s from CHICAGO!). That alone shows my man’s shaky character, Lebron doesn’t want to play in that kind of atmosphere.
This brings us to the most logical choice. The Bulls. First of all, not only does Chicago have enough money to land two max salary free agents, but it also has a hungry, young squad that is only missing a consistent LEADER. Derrick Rose has emerged as likely the best G in the East short of Dwayne Wade and Noah has become a defensive and rebounding threat with improved scoring. Deng is always solid on defense, but lacks a consistency in scoring and would probably excel off the bench. Then there’s Taj Gibson, a nice rookie surprise last year who proved that he can not only defend, but also score from his role off the bench as well. 9.0 points per game on just over 26 minutes on the floor isn’t too shabby. Add to that another consistent bench veteran in Brad Miller and you have yourself a pretty solid nucleus of talent.
Remember how well the Celtics did in 2007 when they added two major players to a team who was just ok? Well, imagine adding a player like Lebron James to a team that already has a major player in place on top of another all star level player to a team that is already competitive, younger and with an even brighter future than the 2007 Celtics could EVER imagine. That’s a team with potential for 69 wins next season en route to their first finals appearance since 1998.
If I had to break down this potential Chicago squad head to head with the 2010 Lakers championship squad you would be hard pressed, as one with basketball knowledge, to not agree that Chicago would have a better team.
Reports came out today from the camps of Chris Bosh and Lebron James indicating that they just want to win are likely to join up to the team that is most ready to win, right now . Winning, my friends, is the most important aspect to a free agent signings. Legends aren’t created based on how much money they make, or what city they are in. Legends are born from WINNING CHAMPIONSHIPS.
These guys have access to private jets, so they can visit any big city in the world that they want to, including to those with 80 degree winters. However, if a player like Lebron James (or Chris Bosh for that matter) wants to WIN right now and potentially for the next several years, the LOGICAL choice is easy.
Yes, the weather is nasty and the city’s baseball teams suck. But there’s a freshly polished Stanley Cup sitting in the United Center as well as 6 less than 20 year old banners flying high to remind you of our city’s championship heart… not to mention the best Pizza and Italian beef in the world… The logical answer is in Chicago, home of your 2011 World Champion, Chicago Bulls.
… and I DARE you to argue with me from a logical standpoint! – Show’Chi Drake