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All Hail King James

The King has made his decision! All Hail the King!

Yes Lebron James has finally come to a final decision as to where he will play basketball for the upcoming few years. Not only has his royalty made his mind up he will announce, er excuse me, proclaim it to the world on ESPN Thursday night in Prime Time! What a gentleman.

Usually such Prime Time proclamation emanate out of Washington where the President of the United States would give the State of the Union Address. I wasn’t expecting that his highness would be on the same level as the Prez, but apparently his royal ringless feels that he has to make a one hour affair as to who will have the privilege to pay him millions and millions of dollars to play basketball next year.

SSHHEEESSHHH! What an ego! I can’t believe that James is making his big announcement in this fashion. Where have the days gone when players had less of an ego and concern about their label and brand than actually playing the game and winning.

How many rings does Lebron have? Has he made it to the finals the last two seasons? Is he more concerned about how the world perceives him that how he actually plays?

Well the answers are, None, None and Yes.

Lebron doesn’t care about winning. It’s all about branding himself and it makes me sick.

I find it so gross that his management group called ESPN to ask if they could make their big announcement live on their channel. I am sure ESPN couldn’t grab that opportunity fast enough. The ratings for this one hour will probably eclipse the NBA finals ratings! Pretty sick in my opinion.

So the question is, who will he choose? Let’s look at the options now.

1) Miami- I really had thought that he would go to play alongside Dwayne Wade in Miami because it would afford him the best chance to win. But it is now clear that winning for the King is not the most important thing, and by going to Miami it would hurt his brand as he would have to play alongside DWADE in his town. Not good for Lebron on the marketing side. It is also heavily rumored that Chris Bosh is almost a Heat and that Bosh made twitter comments about how one person was missing from around the table with he and DWade. So much for the Heat.
2) Los Angeles Clippers-A darkhorse, but Lebron would always play second fiddle to the Lakers and they would never meet in the finals. Kobe will always be in Lebron’s shadow out in LA, so we can eliminate the Clips.
3) New Jersey Nets- They will only be in Brooklyn in 2 years and are now owned by really an unknown quantity. Sure Michael Prokhorov can make Lebron into a World icon, except he has an unproven track record as an NBA owner and that would definitely concern me. And it will probably concern Lebron, so NJ repsct aside for Jay-Z will not be the new home of Lebron.
4) New York Knicks-I can’t see Lebron playing with Amare Stoudemire. I just don’t see it. I think that their styles will conflict with each other and both will be unhappy. In addition, NY may be too big for Lebron and his brand. Yes it would open a world of possibilities but I don’t think that this will be his destination.
5) Chicago Bulls-Originally thought of as a front runner, the Bulls may not get any of the marquee free agents even though they have the best stocked roster of young talent. If Lebron really wanted to win Chicago would be a terrific option for him, but he will have to always be in the shadow of one Air Jordan. To most athletes this would not be a big deal and the chance to win would prevail, but not Lebron. Which leaves us with only one option…
6) Cleveland Cavaliers-Yes his hometown team. This is where Lebron will continue to ply his trade. If he goes it hurts his brand, if he stays he only continues to get bigger and bigger. He looks like a hero. A King. A hometown boy with a terrific image. Staying would not tarnish his reputation and his status amongst the elite. Only if he wants to win, he will have to get some players around him, Without them, Lebron can’t win by himself. And though he has been trying to convince Chris Bosh to join him, Bosh wants bigger and better, not Cleveland. Toronto even as reported would do a sign and trade with Cavs, (they would get some decent players and picks in return), this is not going to be good enough for Chris and that’s why he’ll be in South Beach winning titles while Lebron will continue to lose in the 2nd and 3rd rounds of the playoffs, but his brand will be untarnished.

Branding is the most important part of The King and that is what he is telling the world on Thursday night by making this announcement on ESPN.

Thoughts from the Pulpit

1) How about Holland? Not made Arjen Robben and Wesley Sneijder are having a brilliant World Cup. The Oranje have totally dominated their competition. They have been the best team by far in the tournament and now wait for the winner of Spain and Germany. Germany have looked like the better team of the two so far, but let’s not discount the European Champions led by David Villa. What we do know for sure is that European soccer is still dominant with back to back finals with on European clubs.
2) A shout out to my Pittsburgh Pirates friend! You know who you are! I enjoy our sports banter and it’s always a pleasure to read one of your good stories or take a crack at a good trivia question with the answers containing the likes of Willie Stargell, Roberto Clemente and Al Oliver. Do you think Al Oliver is a Hall of Famer? Scoop sure put up some great numbers, similar to the likes of Don Mattingly and surely should have made it to 3000 hits had it not been the whole collusion affair which ultimately led him to retire. A .303 hitter with over 1300 RBI’s the HOF surely should have found a place for this all time great.