‘Detox’-ing from ‘The Decision.’
by Bryan Crawford / @_BryanCrawford
Pardon the Dr. Dre references but I just couldn’t help myself. Think about it, has there ever been anything more hyped and anticipated that (to date) has failed to deliver on the hype and anticipation than Dre’s Detox? Not until last night there wasn’t. And if you’re the type of person who believes everything they read in the paper and hear on TV, then LeBron James’ “Decision” to leave Cleveland shouldn’t have come as a surprise to you. The burning of his jersey and his being hung in effigy shouldn’t have either.
Dan Gilbert’s reaction to it, well that’s another thing.
Personally, I thought it was pretty cool. We all imagine what owners say and think about players behind closed doors, but Gilbert’s comic sans scripted tirade—although clearly chopped and screwed—gave us a glimpse in to the mind of a billionaire owner who was pissed to see $200+ million dollars walk right out the door, all while giving him the middle finger…in PRIME TIME baby.
Tell ‘em why you mad, son!
So where does that leave us? The Miami Heat now has three of the best players in the NBA all on one team (Oooooh, scary!). To make room for this deal, they traded Michael Beasley to Siberia, er, Minnesota (sorry Myles), eliminating the one light-skinned, heavily tatted athlete with braids that Gloria James would potentially wink at; and the one person who’d be just crazy enough to wink back. LeBron can sleep a little easier at night knowing he doesn’t have to kill anybody in his new home now. Incidentally, I’m probably sure he would’ve tried to kill Delonte until Redz whipped out his guitar case and offered to play him a song first. So instead he settled for quitting on the Cavs and purposefully denying them a championship. And then just like that…he was gone.
Lots of people have said that with this triumvirate of epic proportions, the Miami Heat become instant NBA Champions. Well, if they had more than those three guys, Mario Chalmers, and two second-round draftees, I might be inclined to agree with that. There’s no question those three make up the core of what is sure to be the most talented and dangerous team in the NBA, well, once they actually have enough guys to call themselves a “team” anyway. But is this really a whip that puts all other whips to shame? I’m not so sure. On the championship side, history for the most part has not been kind to teams with three ultra-mega superstars, especially not ones all in their prime. But still, some are predicting multiple championships. I’m predicting a train wreck unlike anything we’ve ever seen.
Think Shaq and Kobe on HGH, the cream, and the clear.
And what about the rest of the League? Does anybody expect the teams who have the ability to compete to just lie down and tap out when Miami comes to town or when they have to roll through South Beach? I don’t. Kobe Bryant and the Lakers ain’t dead. Neither is Boston and Paul Pierce-and-nem. And you know Dwight Howard and Orlando will be pushed harder than ever by Stan Van Gundy who now has all the motivation he needs to try his damndest to knock Riles off his pedestal and rub his face in hair goo. Remember the movie Predator and those three dots you saw just before the victim got zapped in to smithereens? That’s what Bosh, Wade and James has pointed at them now.
And speaking of LeBron James…
His reputation, image, and brand will forever be tarnished. “Chasing” rings at 25? C’mon son. To quote Charles Barkley, “When I was 25, I wanted to do it by myself.” So by my count, that’s at least twice he’s quit something in the past two months. Game 5 in Boston and being “the man” on his own team. Seriously, can you really be called a King on someone else’s court? In someone else’s castle, uhm, “house”? Don’t they refer to it as “Wade County” instead of Dade County down there? Someone told me once (you know who you are) that when LeBron James embraces his inner sidekick, he’ll be fine. I took it as another “I hate LeBron” joke because even though I’m not exactly a fan, even I felt like he was either going to stay in Cleveland or go someplace where he could still be the focal point of a team, the face of a franchise, and lead them to a championship.
But I guess I was wrong.
Now, he really is less like Michael Jordan and more like Scottie Pippen.
After all, 3 + 3 does equal “6” you know.