Well…not that we need any more evidence, but some dude has posted a youtube tribute of LeBron’s most egregious and embarrassing flops and set that shit to music. Chris Bosh even makes a guest appearance. Thanks to Jordan Crawford (Wizards?) for the heads-up. Enjoy:
LeBron’s egomania continues to grow despite his bumbling of “the decision” and yet another failed playoff run. The latest narcissistic delusion of King James I is truly astonishing – normal humans, no longer worthy of His acknowledgement, may not speak to Him directly. This rule extends to all non-deities, including legendary sports photographers:
This is how crazy it was: I wasn’t even allowed to talk directly to LeBron. There was a liaison, someone from Amar’e Stoudemire’s family. I would say to him, “O.K., have LeBron drive right,” and then he’d turn to LeBron and say, “LeBron, go right.”
Comical shit of this variety has led Bleacher Report to bestow upon LeBron the glorious title of Biggest Egomaniac in the History of Sports. Yes, bigger than Michael Jordan. Bigger than Jerry Jones. Bigger than A-Rod. Bigger than Muhammad Ali. Bigger than every asshole to play or coach sports since the dawn of fucking time. “His Airness” Michael Jordan, he of 15 seasons and 6 titles (and 6 finals MVPs), could only muster a pathetic #48 ranking on the list. Fuck you and your entourage, Jordan! LeBron skyrocketed straight to #1 with zero championships and in half the time! Ha!
LeBron, take note: this is the one time you will be ranked ahead of Jordan in anything. Everything else, you lose – scoring titles, championships, MVPs, Finals MVPs, number of Hitler mustaches sported on television…you name it. Savor this moment.
You should have listened to me. As I predicted all along, LeBron James has abandoned you. You can now see LeBron’s despicable douchebaggery for the despicable douchebaggery that it is. Actually – it’s less “can now see” and more “you have absolutely no choice but to be forced to watch.” He took your money, snagged a few MVP trophies, quit on the team, and then hopped on the first (well, second) bus out of town.
I must applaud Dan Gilbert for dropping the truth on that spoiled crybaby in public. I have never seen such a thing in my entire life. And I’m so old that I actually smoke a pipe, so that’s saying something. It’s one thing when the Bernard Watkinses of the world rant on jerks, but it’s another thing entirely when the owner of a sports team goes off on somebody on the record. In an open letter. Posted to the team’s official website. Not surprisingly, EPNBAvid $tern has already mobilized his crack squad of goon journalists to shit all over Mr Gilbert and his message. But whatever, Dan Gilbert is no Al Davis. And he speaks the truth.
Unfortunately, it’s not all Kumbayah, assholes. Frankly, the pain you feel right now is your penance for forcing the rest of the NBA to watch you stroke your rock-hard LeBoner in public for the better part of a decade. And you deserve it. Accept your punishment and let the painful truth wash over you. Embrace it. Because when the pain subsides, you will be left with only hate. Let the words of Dan Gilbert inspire you in 20-point comic book font:
You simply don’t deserve this kind of cowardly betrayal…
“I PERSONALLY GUARANTEE THAT THE CLEVELAND CAVALIERS WILL WIN AN NBA CHAMPIONSHIP BEFORE THE SELF-TITLED FORMER ‘KING’ WINS ONE”
You can take it to the bank.
If you thought we were motivated before tonight to bring the hardware to Cleveland, I can tell you that this shameful display of selfishness and betrayal by one of our very own has shifted our “motivation” to previously unknown and previously never experienced levels.
Shocker. ESPNBAvid $tern goes soft on LeBron. Despite the fact that LeBron rudely skipped the post-game press conference, the league waived the mandatory fine.
LeBron James is David Stern’s spoiled little brat…or business partner…or both. Mike Lupica from the New York Daily News nails it:
First the league said it wasn’t going to fine him, because this was a first offense, as if that’s supposed to come into play. Stern wouldn’t come out Tuesday and say exactly what he wanted to do, almost asking not to be pressed on the matter. Not sounding as much like the NBA commissioner on this one as one of James’ teammates, the ones who did have to stick around and talk about losing to the Magic. Or, and more likely, one of LeBron James’ business partners.
In the painful irony department, LeBron appeared in an NBA Cares commercial that aired during game 6. His speaking line? “Sportsmanship.” Go to 1:14 to skip all the sappy bullshit:
Stan Van Gundy’s game 3 post-game press conference was priceless. Watch it here.
Reporter: Stan, the foul that Dwight fouled out on and a couple other call on LeBron…they don’t even look like fouls sometimes. Can you comment on that?
Stan: Nope. But you can. You write a column. And see, the league won’t fine you $25,000 or whatever. So…so you write it. That’s what I love – you guys see it, but you don’t want to write it. But you want me to comment on it so now I’m a whiner and I get fined. You saw it, write what you saw.
How *dare* you! This is *my* ball. I AM KING JAMES!!!
In the NBA, you can be fined for complaining about a call if you are a coach, even when you are unquestionably right. The press can write whatever they want, but they rarely write stories critical of LeBullshit. Consequentially, LeBron James has become a monster and the last two minutes of every close playoff game (arguably the only part of a basketball game worth watching) are a usually a joke. Thanks, ESPNbavid $tern. Even the defensive player of the year (carrying 5 fouls in a pivotal playoff game) doesn’t get the benefit of the doubt on a decisive defensive play when he goes up against LeBron. When you guard LeBron, you are simply “the guy who is about to foul LeBron.”
You know the situation has gotten completely out of control when Bill Simmons, one of the most eager and enthusiastic of all LeBron fellaters, capable of writing super-romanticized bullshit like this:
In Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Finals, with one second to play and his Cavaliers trailing by two, a 6-foot-9, 275-pound local kid from Akron bullied toward the basket like a tight end. His goal was to jump as high as he could, extend his hands 2 feet over the 10-foot rim, then catch a lob from 50 feet away that had to be perfectly thrown. When his path was cut off, he recalibrated his mission almost as a navigation system reroutes a car, darted away from the basket toward the top of the key, caught a pass coming from his left, turned toward the rim, took a split second to center his body, bounced off the balls of his feet, extended in the air, then arched a 24-foot shot over the extended fingers of a 6-foot-10 opponent from Turkey. Even as he released the shot, he was falling backward, so his momentum carried him toward the other basket. Somehow, the shot rattled home. And that’s when LeBron James turned around, sought out his teammates and joyously hopped into their arms.
This was one of the bigger moments in recent NBA history: The time when our latest hope for “The Next Jordan” actually did something MJ would have done. Like so many other die-hards, I spent the next 24 hours rehashing the moment through phone calls and e-mails and texts.
…can force himself to admit this:
[Jordan was the best and worst thing to happen to the NBA because he created] a generation of one-on-one players who careen toward the basket in big moments, create some form of contact and hope officials will bail them out. With four seconds to play in Game 4 and his team trailing by 2, LeBron put his head down, dribbled as fast as he could and prayed Michael Pietrus would either bump him or trip him. If you watch the clip, he’s moving so fast that it would have been humanly impossible for him to make a shot. That wasn’t his goal. He wanted a call. And he got one. Their feet got tangled, LeBron lurched forward, and the refs bailed him out.
Both of these quotes came from the same article. This is what drives me crazy about Bill Simmons. He clearly and obviously sees what is happening to the NBA. His knows the history of the game in a way that very few dorks are capable. He can even recall a particular foul Bill Laimbeer committed against some guy from the Clippers in the 2nd quarter of a regular season game 20 years ago and what kind of doritos he was eating at the time. He has correctly identified the problem with the modern game (see above) and even offers a few reasonable solutions to this problem. But then he turns around and produces piles and piles of his own hero-worship bullshit (with some of the most comically overwrought sportswriting ever), the root cause of the problem he has just identified. Wow. Whether he realizes it or not, he is actively contributing to the demise of his beloved NBA, nudging it further and further away from his own ideal vision of the game. I just don’t get it.
Sports journalists are the only people able to freely criticize the bullshit without getting fined. They are the only people with an audience large enough and an influence great enough to force some kind of change in the bullshit. Yet, these very same journalists rely on this hero-worship bullshit to pay their bills, thanks to the atmosphere fostered by Nike and Sportscenter. Looks like we’re stuck.
So, Stan, this is why jerk reporters won’t write the obvious fucking columns they need to be writing. And they probably never will.
It happened. LeBron was finally called for a frame-by-frame recreation of The Travel. And against the poor Washington Wizards of all teams – LeBron’s original victims. Amazing. The NBA’s officiating is in such a sorry state that it is nearly impossible for anyone to believe that LeBron could actually be whistled for traveling, even when it is the most painfully obvious example of traveling possible (I’ll get to that later). So unbelievable that when he is called out, it becomes a major media event. Check out Caron Butler’s reaction after the game: It’s a travel. It was the exact same move two years ago in the playoffs. I definitely knew he traveled, but I didn’t think they were gonna call it…But that was one of them situations in which a great player made a move, good officiation, and they called the call. And I was just like, ‘Aw, man. There is a God. There is a God.’
That a professional basketball player could have such an extreme reaction to this whole crab dribble travel call episode really says it all. Caron Butler evidently feels that it requires some kind of divine intervention in order for LeBron to be correctly charged with a traveling violation. Or, at the very least, that such a call constitutes proof of the existence of GOD.
Of course, this was a meaningless game, and a pretty safe game for the refs to have grown a conscience. LeBron has been pulling this shit in the playoffs for years. If a playoff game is close in the fourth quarter, the crab is guaranteed to make an appearance or two. Or twelve. I bet that won’t change this year or ever.
Anyway, back to the story…as with most King James fiascos, LeBron’s obnoxious reaction is more than half the fun. How pathetic is it that LeBron has the nerve to 1. complain to the refs about such a valid call (including a re-enactment to the ref during the game – where was the tech!?), 2. claim that even after he had seen the tape in the locker room that it was still not a travel and then 3. be so bold as to go in front of the media and bitch about it knowing full well that he has won entire playoffs series on no-calls from the same move. Answer: it is quite pathetic. And he kept bitching about it the day after the game, after having the benefit of watching it replayed on sportscenter 600 times:
On Sunday, James said it was a “bad call” and that “they need to look at it and they need to understand that’s not a travel.” In giving his take on what happened, James said: “I watched it again, and I took a ‘crab dribble,’ which is a hesitation dribble, and then two steps.”
Ugh. LeBron must honestly believe that he can do no wrong.
Unfortunately, apart from racking up a meaningless loss against a non-contender, LeBron came away from this episode completely unscathed, as usual - he wasn’t given a tech for complaining directly to the ref (Oh, I’m sorry – explaining to the ref) and he wasn’t fined for repeatedly and directly criticizing the officiating after the game (are they going to return Eddie Jordan’s $25K for complaining about a no-call on the very same move back in 2006?).
One more item of note – the valiant Mr. Potato Head made a point to get thrown out of the game arguing a charging foul called on LeBron (LeBron’s other signature move). He couldn’t just sit by and watch LeBron being so blatantly subjected to the rules of basketball for an entire game. The officiating was just so terribly fair that night, apparently.
Because Mr. Potato Head and many reporters are apparently retarded and because LeBron apparently has some psychological condition that prevents him from viewing rapidly moving images on a television screen and processing them properly in his LeBrain, let’s break this shit down, frame-by-frame, by using youtube and the offical NBA rulebook. And Jalen Rose.
First, the rule:
a. A player who receives the ball while standing still may pivot, using either foot as the pivot foot.
b. A player who receives the ball while he is progressing or upon completion of a dribble, may use a two-count rhythm in coming to a stop, passing or shooting the ball.
The first count occurs:
(1) As he receives the ball, if either foot is touching the floor at the time he receives it.
(2) As the foot touches the floor, or as both feet touch the floor simultaneously after he receives the ball, if both feet are off the floor when he receives it.
The second occurs:
(1) After the count of one when either foot touches the floor, or both feet touch the floor simultaneously.
c. A player who comes to a stop on the count of one may pivot, using either foot as the pivot foot.
d. A player who comes to a stop on the count of two, with one foot in advance of the other, may pivot using only the rear foot as the pivot foot.
e. A player who comes to a stop on the count of two, with neither foot in advance of the other, may use either foot as the pivot foot.
f. In starting a dribble after (1) receiving the ball while standing still, or (2) coming to a legal stop, the ball must be out of the player’s hand before the pivot foot is raised off the floor.
g. If a player, with the ball in his possession, raises his pivot foot off the floor, he must pass or shoot before his pivot foot returns to the floor. If he drops the ball while in the air, he may not be the first to touch the ball.
h. A player who falls to the floor while holding the ball, or while coming to a stop, may not gain an advantage by sliding.
i. A player who attempts a field goal may not be the first to touch the ball if it fails to touch the backboard, basket ring or another player.
PENALTY: Loss of ball. The ball is awarded to the opposing team at the sideline, nearest spot of the violation but no nearer the baseline than the foul line extended.
Okay – so the NBA rulebook isn’t as crystal-clear as it could be. However, after much difficulty, it is possible to translate this strangely-worded crap and come away with the fact that you get TWO STEPS after picking up your dribble in most situations. I think. Anyway – let’s assume two. It’s certainly not more than two, in any situation, obviously.
On to the visual evidence and Jalen Rose (hope they don’t pull this video down):
Wow – I think that may have actually been five steps.
Also, the feud kinda lives. Injured DeShawn Steven was apparently taunting from the sidelines in a ridiculous purple velvet suit and bowtie. I would have loved to have heard what kind of vicious trash talk DeShawn Stevenson was dishing out immediately following that travel call. Of course, LeBron refused to participate in the back-and-forth because he is above all that. And because he couldn’t say a damn thing.
Recently, Lebron threw Clevelanders a bone by mentioning that he might agree to a contract extension ahead of his 2010 free agency. For some reason, Clevelanders seem to have bought it hook, line, and sinker (considering all the “see, that proves LeBron loves us” emails I’ve gotten). Oh, how quickly you forget, gullible residents of the Mistake on the Burning Lake. I’d like to take this chance to remind you all just how many times LeBron has insulted you and your fair city before you get too giddy and buy into LeBron’s empty little PR ploy:
First, here are some choice quotes and news stories from the LeBron/NY love affair (weight this against his single “I might consider…possibly, perhaps staying in…*cough*…Cleveland” quote):
You have to stay open-minded if you’re a Knicks fan. … If you guys want to sleep right now and don’t wake up until July 1, 2010, then go ahead. It’s going to be a big day.
We got really close. Coach D’Antoni gave me a lot of freedom, he allowed me to play every position I wanted to play, I was the leader of that team, but I was also like the overseer of some offensive plays.
To be a part of that chemistry, be part of the offensive mastermind that Coach D’Antoni is, that was great.
We were able to do some things on offense that were really unstoppable with the Olympic team.
When asked about the prospect of joining the Knicks:
It would be unfair to bring that kind of distraction to our team and my teammates, the coach and the rest of the organization,” James said. “I think July 1, 2010 will be one the bigger days in free agent history.
Sure, buddy. Then there was the leak from LeBron’s NBA power-player pal that he favors a Knicks trade. Pretty damning stuff. As if anybody outside Cleveland didn’t know that already, considering LeBron unveiled his new Big Apple shoe in New York, during a game against the Knicks, to a thunderous round of applause from New Yorkers. Applause LeBron gladly accepted.
Then there was LeBron’s overly-defensive reaction to Charles Barkely calling him out. It never escalated to a proper feud, but it was nice.
Charles: The outside forces should never affect your locker room. I think LeBron has made some of the right comments, but he hasn’t made the perfect comment. He still alienated 11 guys in his locker room…
If I was LeBron James, I would shut the hell up.
LeBron: He’s stupid. That’s all I’ve got to say about that.
Charles: LeBron James is one of my favorite players, but he’s been 100 percent wrong in this situation Barkley said. It’s unfair to the city of Cleveland and it’s unfair to the Cleveland Cavaliers team. If it was a year away it would still be unfortunate. I wish he would sign a lifetime deal with the Cavaliers.
LeBron: I guarantee that I will move to New York. I’d rather die than stay in this shithole. Le-Bron Ja-Mes. Clap. Clap. Clap Clap Clap.
And don’t forget LeBron’s public displays of disrespect for Ohio’s other sports franchises!
As LeBron has become more of an abrasive a-hole, Cleveland fans have become a little more open-minded when it comes to accepting that LeBron Jame might not be the greatest thing in the universe after all. So open-minded that one Cavs super-fan, Amar from Cavalier Attitude, actually wanted to seriously interview me.
Check my interview with Cavalier Attitude here. At first I thought it had to be a trap, but I must say that it was a fair interview from a serious website. As you can see from the responses to the interview, some of the more rational Cavs fans found themselves agreeing with me on some points (though quite a bit more still hate my guts and refuse to see the truth, of course).
It was definitely an interesting experience. I wish they had interviewed me after the full-blown New York Knicks fiasco, though!
Go visit Cavalier Attitude to read the full interview. If the link doesn’t work, shoot me an email and I’ll post the full interview here.