1) No, city of Cleveland, LeBron James doesn’t owe you anything. BUT! BUT! If you are LeBron and you contact ESPN to throw an hour-long special all about you and where you will sign in 2010, there is only one acceptable outcome: stay with Cleveland.
If you say you’re going play with any other team this fall, you’re breaking up with your girl on national television. You’re rubbing it in her face. And this girl already has a rocky sports history. LeBron, don’t say this was a hard decision. Don’t feed Cleveland that tired it’s not you, it’s me line. They don’t want to hear it. They don’t need to hear it.
LeBron doesn’t owe the city of Cleveland anything, but he owes the Cavaliers front office something. Assuming you didn’t settle on Miami in the middle of breakfast today, respect the Cavs organization by giving them as much time to rebuild as possible. That means don’t drag this out longer than you have to, LeBron. Just say you’re moving to Miami. Don’t make it a circus.
Also, don’t pat yourself on the back for sacrificing millions by signing with Miami. Most of America will never see the kind of money you are making, and the last thing they need to hear is how you’re settling for $96 million.
We deify our superstar athletes, but LeBron is still a 25-year-old kid, no matter how much quality time he spends with Warren Buffett. I think he’ll regret this hour-long, ESPN special in the future. He may already regret it.
2) The Miami Heat will have three stars (I still have reservations about Chris Bosh) and a lot of bodies on the roster this fall. There is only one way for this experiment to be considered a success: a championship, and preferably multiple. Let me know how that depth goes, Miami. Miami is not Boston— yet.
3) I can’t wait to watch Miami at Cleveland in 2010-2011.
Art Modell, you can sleep well again.
You are no longer the most-hated man in Cleveland.