LeBroptimism Up.

5/30/2009: The Cavs get smoked by the Magic. LeBron’s “supporting cast” is exposed. LeBron angrily bolts the arena…He seems upset…

Update: LeBron meets the press and claims he still likes where the Cavs are headed. In a Yankees hat. He also refuses to definitively say he’ll sign an extension. I guess we’ll see on July 18th…

7 comments

  1. SlumdogBaller

    Let me preface my comments by saying I believe Lebron is a tremendous talent and I would not be remiss if he were to land in a Knick uniform.

    That said, I have to say that my lebroptimism is down.

    I felt very put-off by his actions after the loss to Orlando – bolting the arena, failing to congratulate the winners, failure to take some of the blame for the loss and instead putting it on the shoulders of his teammates and then conducting an interview in his Yankees hat (not so subtly taking a jab at Danny Ferry, his teammates and his fans – telling them “you’re not good enough!”).

    I would be a shame if young kids who look up to Lebron and other professional athletes started saying: “I don’t need to congratulate anyone because i’m a winner”. Not a great precedent to start.

    I place great importance on good sportsmanship and Lebron just lost the ball on this one in my opinion and cause the optimism on my part to fall a bit.

  2. Jon

    I think that’s a fair point Slumdog. He handled the loss very badly. I’ll only defend him by saying that we shouldn’t forget that Lebron, precocious though he may be, is only 24 years old.

    When I was 24, if I was as unaccustomed to failure as Lebron is, and I’d just suffered the most bitter disappointment of my life, I can’t imagine that I’d have handled it any better than he did.

  3. Italian Stallion

    I had no major problem with his unwillingness to shake hands. I’ve always felt that a lot of the “good luck”, “congratulations” kinds of things we see in professional sports are phony anyway. I don’t think many hyper competitive players and rivals like each other much while their careers are still in progress. It’s afterwards that they grow to respsect each other and often become friends.

    It’s easy for the winner to say kind words to the loser, but the loser (if he’s highly competitive) is usually bitterly disappointed and already trying to figure out what went wrong so he can reverse the results next time.

    IMO, the bigger mistake he made was with the media. He owes it to the league to answer a few questions when things go badly just as he enjoys the limelight when things go well. Wearing the Yankee hat was ridiculous.

  4. JLS125

    to add onto what Italian Stallion has said:

    he didn’t endear himself by having his other teammates answering questions after they lose. he is supposedly the leader who has said that he couldn’t have achieved MVP or the best record in the EC without them. not to mention that shows some selfish lack of leadership. i mean, it’s all about the team when they win but when they lose it’s their fault?

    i mean, i don’t want to blow it out of proportion just adding some perspective. after who knows how many years of having a selfish player lead the Knicks to misery i would assume that any kind of selfishness from a prospective FA should raise a red flag.

    again, LBJ has been nothing short of a class act in his career. but i do see where Italian Stallion is coming from.

  5. Italian Stallion

    Yea, from what I hear he did sort of leave his teammates out to dry also.

    As Jon said, he is young and I think this loss really hit home. He’s had a fairy tale NBA career so far. This was the year that was supposed start the championship run. Not only did they not win, it was sort of apparent they were the inferior team even though the Magic were missing Jammer Nelson – who was a key component to their team in the first half. I think he realizes that no championships are assured with the Cavs as currently composed. That may have comes as a shock to him (but is good news for Knicks fans).

  6. SlumdogBaller

    After giving this issue further thought it’s hard not to forget that he is still just 24. He left highschool to come to the NBA and I think it’s reasonable to just chalk this up as a learning experience.

    It was necessary that this lack of sportsmanship was pointed out so that Lebron can learn from it but I don’t think that this incident, however horrible it seems on it’s face, is so terrible. I do think that Lebron has been the consumate professional up to this point (aside from his recent fiasco) so i’m willing to give him the benefit of the doubt.

    Also, if he ever comes to NY (and that’s a big IF) he’ll have a clean slate in my book that’s for sure.

  7. scot

    LeBron has been molded into the likes of the primadonna’s before him.
    “GIVE ME THE BALL”!
    Well, If like me, you are a fan of Basketball, You want to see a “Great Team”, not just a marketing tool at work.
    Give most players 30 shots a game, and they will score +/- 50%.
    This marketing approach to the4 NBA is and has been the fault of the likes of Pat Riley and Phil Jackson.
    Larry Brown and Gregg Popovich are the two stand outs, the Anti-Disney, that have created Great Teams.
    Give Lebron a team oriented coach, and watch greatness happen.

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