Tuesday, June 21, 2016

This One is for LeBron

LeBron James. That name rings so many volumes in America today. Good volumes for some and bad volumes for others. These days, it seems like more bad ones. I can honestly say, I feel for him on this one. He has been made to be public enemy number one in sports and the man has not committed a crime. The way people spew so much hate for him, you would think he is an ex-con getting a second chance in life. He did nothing wrong to anyone. The ONLY people who could have legitimately disliked him would be any basketball fan in the state of Ohio and maybe Miami now. The way he left Cleveland was just all bad but he came back and redeemed himself.  The guy has been called LeBitch, LeBrick, or any other vile variation of his name. He has been called arrogant, which I can't see. He has been called a cry-baby, no more than any of those paper soft Golden State Warriors stars/divas. He said something a while ago that I HOPE HE STILL STANDS BY, “All the people that were rooting on me to fail, at the end of the day, they have to wake up tomorrow and have the same life that they had before they woke up today. They have the same personal problems they had today. I’m going to continue to live the way I want to live and continue to do the things that I want to do with me and my family and be happy with that. They can get a few days or a few months or whatever the case may be on being happy about not only myself, but the Miami Heat not accomplishing their goal. But they have to get back to the real world at some point.”

Obviously, he doesn't play for the Miami Heat anymore but the message still rings true. I have a friend who will remain nameless, Chaston Montgomery, who always finds a way to hate on LeBron James. Sometimes I feel he says things just to agitate people. I can admit, he gets under my skin at time. But after this NBA Finals in which LeBron stayed true to his promise, no one can really ever give him guff ever again. He brought his team down from 3-1. He put the team on his back and did something that was reminiscent of the Boston Red Sox coming back from a 3-0 deficit against the New York Yankees. It felt all but over when Cleveland went down 3-1. When they won game 5, there was still the linger of they can't win in Golden State. That game LeBron and Kyrie Irving put the team on their backs and dropped 41 points each. Game 6. I was scared that Golden State would again pop champagne in the locker room of the Cavaliers. King James said no! Strapped the team on his back for ANOTHER 41-point performance, including 18 straight points for Cleveland. How great is that?!?! Game 7. Can The King close? A huge block on Iguadala, a triple-double, and huge shot from Kyrie Irving sealed the deal. The Cleveland Cavaliers had won their 1st NBA Championship.

It started with a promise from LeBron just two short years ago. And he stayed true to his promise. The emotions, ugly cry, on his face were powerful and yet, heart-warming. LeBron James made true to his promise! I'm proud of him! He is the best basketball player of this era hands down! Many can say Kobe was and that would be fair. But for me, Kobe wouldn't have been able to bring this team back from these odds. LeBron did what he has done on every team he has been on: made everyone around him better and made them believe in a new possible. Richard Jefferson expressed this sentiment best: "I owe my entire basketball career to him. I’ll give you a little walk down right now. I lost the national championship game to Duke, then I lost two straight NBA Finals, then my third year we lost to Detroit after being up 3-2 and they won the championship, then I lost to Miami and they won the championship, then to top it off I went to the Olympics and we were the worst team of all time. My whole career has been so, so close. Then I had a stretch of six to seven years where you become a little bit of a journeyman. To be able to get on a team and walk in with a guy that says he’s going to be able to carry you and bring me here, I owe everything, every shot, every play, everything I’ve ever done to that man."

Well done LeBron. Mama, there goes that man!