Saturday, July 12, 2014

Red Whines: Fit for a King

I don't know... Maybe I have been getting more easily irritated as of late. Maybe I'm making a big deal out of the media overload involving LeBron James. Or maybe I'm not as crazy as I think. We'll find out.

First, I see the #beforeLeBrondecides on Twitter.
(ex. "I am going to win an Oscar for Best Original Screenplay #beforeLeBrondecides")

Then, I see "I'm coming home."

Finally, I can't get away from it all. 

Who, in this technological age, really can, anyway?

If you have watched any sort of news coverage over the past 48 hours, whether it's been broadcast TV or cable, you have probably heard the name "LeBron James" thrown in there once or twice. Even if you weren't paying attention, you had to have heard a name drop on television. And if you've been on Facebook, Twitter, or Reddit, heaven help you. You might have gotten flooded with the news that NBA superstar LeBron James has left the Miami Heat and has a feature in the latest issue of Sports Illustrated that he is returning to the Cleveland Cavaliers, most likely to finish his career there. After playing in South Beach for four years and winning two NBA Championships there, he is being called the "prodigal son" in many cases.

In response, the NBA fandom (as well as many of its players) was thrown into a gargantuan frenzy. Yes, the word "gargantuan" was absolutely necessary, specifically for the point that it was something that you didn't exactly expect unless if someone was attempting to pen a happy ending somewhere on this earth. While many NBA fans had hoped and dreamed that LeBron would be going to their home team, everyone pretty much knew that the inevitable decision to leave Miami was going to be one for the ages. And it certainly was. If you follow sports at all, the words "I'm coming home" was all you needed to hear in order to know how this all ended. As it stands, LeBron James will be playing in a Cavaliers jersey once again.

Remember when all of those sad Cleveland fans were burning their James jerseys in the streets and stuff? How stupid do you think they feel right now? They've admitted their excitements and their apologies to the man who was raised in nearby Akron, Ohio. Some might not be as forgiving, such as the ones saying: "you still left us behind." However, his skipping out of Miami has left the Heat franchise with an awfully uncertain-looking group of players in their hands. On top of the major story, sports outlets like ESPN made sure to note that James' move to the Cavs has greatly increased the team's chances of making the playoffs and winning the NBA Championship next season and the lack of team power on the Heat has decreased those chances to 100-1 for them. In my mind, I'm like:


It was honestly like ESPN was going out of their way to make sure that this news story was the biggest thing to ever happen in the history of sports. While it is in its own right, c'mon, people. Horrible stuff is happening in Israel right now. I'm pretty sure that is more important that the Cavaliers' chances and the Heat's chances of winning the NBA Championship next June. It's not sports, but really. We're making this whole "return home" a bigger filmmaking magnet than it should. I'm pretty sure there are other human beings that agree on this and just don't talk about it because that involves people having to talk about it and later roll their eyes, groan, and question why they even wanted to bring up this whole story in the first place. It truly is a vicious cycle, isn't it?

For the longest time, LeBron James has not only been a "king" of the court, but he's also been the media "king" in regards to the basketball world. His skill that has often been compared to (and often argued to surpass) the accomplishments of Michael Jordan. Not only that, he has also been given an image of being a bit too big for his britches, regardless of what kind of person he is on and off the court. Nevertheless, he is the center of attention as being one of the biggest, most marketable athletes in the entire world. Plus, since he is at the status, he is also at the helm of being wrecked and being the center of public scrutiny. Why? Is it jealousy from the general public? Is it irritation from his face and name being plastered everywhere not just in the sports world, but also in mainstream media? There really is no clear-cut answer to this.

The main question that remains is this: Does he really deserve all of this fanfare?

Let's put things into perspective here... When Michael Jordan "semi-retired" and came back to play for the Washington Wizards, it wasn't made into this humongous deal. Then again, he didn't have this big deal of an interview saying that he was going to go to another team because he wanted to move on to bigger and better things. While Jordan still played for the Wizards, he will always be known for rocking with the Chicago Bulls in the 1990's. In LeBron's case, he was the standout star for Cleveland before leaving for Miami four seasons ago. He was going to another team that had other basketball titans that could roll with his style, and it was practically written in the stars that a team like that could win gold. This is the big thing that Cavs fans and supporters knew and refused to stomach. He is arguably the best player to wear a Cavs jersey, and now he is coming back to the team he once started with.

Here's a big kicker though... have we seen what kind of players the Cavs have now? It's almost like the shoe that Miami wore is on the other foot. Cleveland (even before LeBron made his announcement) looked like a contender, and now those odds have skyrocketed. LBJ is a playmaker, and his experience in the playoffs and his ability to make magic can make a difference. Ego aside, King James is the real deal. It's just annoying that the media is gushing over him as much as they are. We know he's good, and he might be a King Midas of sorts, but good gravy, he's not a demigod or whatever you want to call it.

The attention he is getting is fit for a king. One thing is for certain, he is handling it well. However, can the media handle their own self-imposed frenzy and come down from it soon enough? Probably not. Heck, I still don't think they've gotten over Donald Sterling yet. Oh well. One can always hope.

Now that I've gotten this out of the way, can we talk about other sports now? I know he's with Cleveland. I am content with this. Let us move on, ladies and gentlemen.