But since I'm in a feisty mood and there's a certain NBA star who needs to be called out, here are some rants and raves about tonight's impending disaster (replete with lots of dirty words). My apologies to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports* for "borrowing" some of his insights.
A. Lebron really has dropped in my book. For him, this period of free agency has been his defining moment. He, and I think more so than the media, has been playing up the hype leading up to this summer for years. Nobody in the media forced him to don New York hats and make little hints and innuendos. Nobody forced him to have an hour special. Kobe definitely could have handled this situation the same way as Lebron, but he chose to quietly renegotiate a monster deal and go ahead and win a title. I never, ever in a million years thought I would say this, but at this moment, I would actually say I prefer Kobe, who has traditionally been one of my most hated basketball players, to Lebron.
B. Just because Lebron isn't in front of the cameras discussing free agency doesn't mean his publicity team and agent and entourage aren't doing stuff behind the scenes to encourage this feeding frenzy. You can't throw chum in the water and then be surprised when the sharks show up. How many times does it have to be said that none of the other monster free agents refer to themselves as the King and do specials? Lebron controls his camp. Period. You'd have to be crazy to think he hasn't had a hand in this. Getting others to do your bidding while you look innocent is what having power is all about.
Anyway, taking Lebron's silence under the best of circumstances, here are some things he has done that are still shitty.
1. Agreeing to this ridiculous hour-long special. No other star is doing this. As Stan Van Gundy said, it takes 15 seconds to say where you're going, not a produced special.
2. If he does sign with the Cavs, he could have done so long ago and spared us all this agonizing orgy of idiocy. If he doesn't resign, he's having this ridiculous espn love fest to rub it in the face of the city who loves him.
3. He had his camp leak the news of Wade and Bosh to the media, so today would be all about him.
4. Referred on his OWN Web site to this ridiculous TV program as "The Decision." Unless I missed something and he's the reincarnation of Harry fucking Truman about to incinerate a couple major cities, I think he's overestimating and over-hyping this moment.
C. Trying to hide his ego under a cloak of charity is despicable and insulting to our collective intelligence. The guy is a hundred-millionaire. He could donate the same amount directly to the Boys and Girls Clubs whenever he wanted and not even notice it missing from his enormous pile of gold bars. He could have held a press conference, donated the money ... and told the Worldwide Leader to go fuck themselves. His personal appearance money is pennies compared to the ad revenue espn will generate and I haven't heard espn say they're giving the money to charity. Instead, he would rather have his ego erotically stroked for 60 minutes by the suits at the MTV of Sports. In an era where it's always about the money even when it's not about the money, this is either about the money or about the ego. Take your pick.