05-19-2010, 10:55 AM
Quest For Seven
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Re: Lebron James Amazing
LeBron James: Not Man Enough To See It Through
LeBron James is used to putting on a basketball performance the likes of which we've never seen before. In Games 4, 5 and 6 of the Eastern Conference semifinal series with the Boston Celtics, he awed us.
Only this time, the man who once scored 29 of the final 30 points for his Cleveland Cavaliers in a double-overtime victory in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Detroit Pistons showed us that heís capable of something we never thought weíd see him do -- quit.
The excuses are all there for a man who never makes excuses: maybe his end goal was to get Head Coach Mike Brown fired, maybe the elbow injury is more serious than he is letting on, maybe impending free agency was too much of a burden.
LeBron James is heartless
But nobody thought we would see a lack of heart from King James. In Game 5, he was disinterested. In Game 6, he was more interested in a triple-double than a win. Maybe weíd expect this from Joe Johnson, but not LeBron James, right? (stats are everything)
Apparently not. Therein lies the difference; itís what separates LeBron James from the Michael Jordans and Larry Birds of the world. Heís not the man that they were. Itís no longer a question of talent or skill; itís a question of heart.
Take it personal
Jordan and Bird would have never allowed Game 5 to happen -- a 32-point home loss in a 2-2 series tie -- and if they somehow did, you can bet your house that they would die hard with a vengeance in Game 6. They would take it personally.
Players like Bird, Jordan, Kevin Garnett and Dwyane Wade would sooner collapse on the court than lose in that fashion. Itís no coincidence that the latter three players were picked for the Gatorade ďThatís GĒ commercial and LeBron James was not.
The Pistons used to be a big roadblock for Jordan, but he never bolted. He saw it through with Chicago. Thatís G.
Garnett would have retired a Timberwolf no matter how many times they missed the playoffs. Thatís G.
Wade and the Miami Heat were on the brink of an insurmountable 0-3 deficit in the 2006 NBA Finals before he single-handedly willed his team to victory in the game and series. Thatís G.
But at this point in time, after watching LeBron James wilt under the pressure, we can say that he simply doesnít have the heart to stay and see things through.
LeBron James is turning his back
James has tried his best in Cleveland -- at least until this playoff series -- and since he canít win with this team and since the Cavs wonít have the financial flexibility to make wholesale changes, itís inevitable that LeBron James will leave.
And for him, itís the easiest time to turn his back and walk away. After all, itís easier to quit and walk away from the face of adversity than to try, and try, and try until you succeed.
The Cavaliers are a 61-win team, which you might find hard to believe at this moment. They may only be a coaching or point guard change away from being a dynasty, and while LeBron James had a financial agreement contracting him to perform for the Cleveland Cavaliers for his entire career, he apparently hasnít made the unspoken agreement that heís here to see things through.
LeBron James is not G
But Jamesí final performances and his choice to leave Cleveland now that the going has gotten tough, thatís not G.
ďWhatís G?Ē as the commercial asks and answers, ďIt is the heart, hustle and soul of the game.Ē After watching Game 4 and 5, LeBron James is not G.
At the end of the day, he doesnít owe the Cavaliers -- or their fans -- anything. Heís fulfilled his contract and heíll go to New York to be the biggest superstar or heíll go to Chicago to transition the Jordan era to his, but a real man would see it through.
Bodie didnít ditch the corners when Marlo took over, Vincent Chase would never ditch E, Turtle and Drama, and Jake Sully wouldnít leave the Naívi so they could become extinct.
Those men saw it through, but LeBron James didnít, canít and wonít.
At least you have that stat book.