For the last four years a significant percentage of NBA fans have been obsessed with the Miami Heat. They were either rooting for Miami to succeed or cheering vehemently for their failure.
In 2010, after Pat Riley added LeBron James and Chris Bosh to augment Dwayne Wade; the “fly-by-nighters” leaped wholeheartedly onto the Miami bandwagon in droves, riding happily along almost without a care in the world. A few of them even missed the fact that Chris Bosh quietly sacrificed personal goals and continued to perform with greatness. It is not very difficult to visualize all three as future Hall of Famers.
Miami fans always speak as if they, collectively, are part of the team itself. We are creating a dynasty and the rest of the NBA will bow down at our greatness. The 2014 NBA finals was an aberration. Management will retool and soon we will be back to where we belong. Winning Championships!
Then the unimaginable happened. LeBron James left the Miami Heat. Suddenly, the bandwagon was now a basket. You know what, they said, Dwayne Wade is falling apart. He’s old. His knees have one slightly worn piece of cartilage left. Chris Bosh is an overpaid, opportunist, and he is greedy. LeBron is a king who just wants to help his original kingdom. He wants to breathe the breath of life into his home state and its’ economy. How noble.
FICKLE, FICKLE, FICKLE
The Northeast Ohio LeBron haters, whose ringleader was Dan Gilbert, are now drinking from the cup of everlasting togetherness. They, like Christ, have thrown LeBron’s sin of abrupt departure into the sea of forgetfulness. Like it never happened.
Can you imagine if the government took the approach that the Cleveland fans have embraced with LeBron? Republicans and Democrats would get along and the nation would have a productive Congress.
These Cleveland Fans proudly proclaim:
Our Prodigal Son has Returned
My Boo is Back
This is Everything.
FICKLE, FICKLE, FICKLE
I want everyone to just take a collective pause and stop acting like LeBron’s decision was selfless. No, instead it was a calculated self- serving, profit driven, business decision. During the past four years, Cleveland has had three #1 picks in the NBA lottery. Now as far as the Heat is concerned Miami became four years older simultaneously, especially Dwayne Wade’s knees. Cleveland also had cap space and appeared to be a team on the rise. Miami had been embarrassed during the 2014 finals and lacked young talented, weapons to compete on a championship level. Cleveland is the seventh youngest team in the league. Finally, Miami as well as the remainder of the NBA had no access to the endless supply of “youth juice” that the San Antonio Spurs Head Coach Gregg Popovich has been feeding Spurs stars Manu Ginobili and Tim Duncan for far longer than we know.
Cleveland was a natural choice for LeBron to relocate and this departure was the best way to leave Miami gracefully without a general backlash. LeBron may be one of the greatest to play the game. But he is a businessman first. However, LeBron fans don’t see him in that light. To them, he loves Cleveland and wants to go home. And his fans will be damned if they don’t dive onto the Cleveland Cavaliers bandwagon; with arms wide open ready to embrace their King’s decision. The King’s bandwagon may be emptying in Miami but there is very little space remaining for those to leap onto the back of his gold plated carriage in Cleveland.
Alexis Sara Cobb may be reached at: email@example.com or (724)561-8082 Follow her on Twitter: @alexissara