On Thursday night, LeBron James announced his decision to leave the Cleveland Cavaliers to play with the Miami Heat. This announcement was made in a live TV program broadcast on ESPN. Thousands (or maybe millions) of people watched as they anxiously waited to hear what LeBron would do. We (Sam and Marcy) were watching.
LeBron James has been proclaimed to be a “king” or “savior of Cleveland”. As we watched his television special, we were shocked by some of the things he said. He said that his decision wasn’t made until he got up on Thursday morning and talked to his mother. If this is true, why were sources close to LeBron reporting that he had already decided on Miami several days before the event? He also said that this decision was based on his future, a championship and his happiness. Well…why didn’t he look happy? If this decision is the best thing for him, his life and his career – why wasn’t he showing more excitment? He also kept saying that…”this is just business”…well, then if it is just business, why not just have a press conference, why make this announcement in a boys and girls club?
The fact is LeBron made his decision – and that decision was to create the most media hype possible around his choice for a team. Some will say he is wonderful for raising millions of dollars for the boys and girls club. True?? YES! This is a wonderful organization that is helping kids throughout the country. Our question – why not spend a few minutes talking about what the organization does or even better, talking to some of the kids in the gym???? Some will say LeBron used his location to soften the blow for Cleveland fans. After all, how can Cavs fans complain when he used his departure to raise money for charity?
The truth is LeBron is right, this is just business – contracts were signed and the deal was made. But should it be? Should the business of basketball receive prime-time focus and cause riots in the street? Should we ever label anyone as a “King” or a “Savior”? We are so quick to name sports figures as heroes, putting them on a pedestal and giving them so much of our time and attention just because they excel at a sport. Think about this – what were those boys and girls in that Greenwich gym thinking? Was the message one of a bright future or unlimited potential? Or was the message that winning and thinking of only your own happiness is the most important thing of all? Great things will be done with the money that was raised through this “decision” event – we are not disputing that fact. The sad thing is that the world COULD have seen a superstar display loyalty and selflessness. Isn’t the true definition of a hero, someone that sacrifices for others? We don’t think that happened Thursday night.
We feel for all Cavs fans today, but want to encourage everyone to act responsibly. Burning jerseys, tearing down signs or acting foolish will not change any decision that has been made. What can change the world is when we reach out to each other – be heroes, give of our time, sacrifice for others. How about this? Why don’t we all pick a worthy organization and volunteer for a few hours! Instead of spending time and money on a “Keep LeBron in Ohio” event, why don’t we put our efforts where we can really make a difference?!
Let us know what you think!
Now I have to go get a box of Kleenex for Sam! 🙂