Message to LeBron: It’s spelled T-E-A-M.

 

One of the great things about the NBA is that even casual and non-fans tune in to the drama and excitement that is the Finals.  This particular Finals was intriguing because the two teams were diametrically opposed in terms of makeup and style of play.  Even more compelling was the fact that many fans were not just rooting for their teams, but were rooting AGAINST the Heat.  Why?  Because of fan hatred that was self-inflicted.  The center of the firestorm against the Heat was squarely focused on LeBron James, and for good reason.

To say that LeBron James is an exceptionally talented basketball player is an understatement in the extreme.  He is arguably one of the best, particularly at this stage of his career.  So when LeBron became a free agent, fans around the country had renewed hope for their franchises, and lit up social media outlets pleading for him to sign with their teams.  LeBron, being a young man, took this so much to heart that he mistakenly thought that all the hoopla was about him.  IT WASN’T.  This is a common mistake among the young.

From every interview I’ve seen with LeBron, he couldn’t understand why fans were so upset with him about his reality t.v.-styled one hour special he called “The Decision.”  That is because he never understood that by producing a one-hour special just so we could all learn who he would sign with, by making everyone wait for the prime-time “Decision,” and by literally holding teams hostage (including the Cavaliers, whom he didn’t give the courtesy of contacting first) to his whim, and by holding court in his hometown hotel rooms as various teams traveled across the country for the privilege of grovelling at his feet, he made the entire process about HIM.  Which meant that he never understood why fans were excited about his free agency in the first place.  They were excited for their TEAMS, for the possibility of signing one of the NBA’s greats so that he could wear THEIR uniform.  Period.

There was another glaring instance of LeBron not getting the concept of TEAM.  When he, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh appeared on stage in Miami with their uniforms on, dancing to music and smoke machines like they were in a scene from a bad, B-rated sports movie, it apparently never occurred to them that they should include the rest of the TEAM in the news conference.  What, aren’t the rest of the Heat important, too?  By having the three of them showboating on stage and mindlessly claiming seven or more championships, what message was Heat management sending to the rest of the Heat?  Would YOU want to be a member of that team and be completely ignored in this way?

At the end of the day, (for this season at least), a Dallas Maverick team with one superstar and a bunch of important and relied-upon role players won the championship over three superstars and a bunch of ignored “teammates.”   The Mavericks are champions because a bunch of their players no where near as talented as LeBron figured out how to step in to the game and step up at critical moments.  The passed the ball, literally and figuratively, to each other at just the right times.  Apparently, talent isn’t everything.  As Rick Carlisle, the Mavericks coach stated after being awarded the championship trophy:

We don’t jump high, and we don’t run fast, but we play well together.

What a concept.  The old mantra bears repeating here, because it is so tried and true:

There is no ‘I’ in TEAM.

Corny?  Maybe.  Old-fashioned?  Most definitely.  But “TEAM” is a concept even a megastar like LeBron can’t conquer.

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2 Responses to "Message to LeBron: It’s spelled T-E-A-M."

  • Fino says:

    I 100% agree with this article! Now I personally don’t have any dislike and don’t have hatred to him as most fans do but, he brought all the attention to himself. He did make this whole situation about himself. Some Lebron supporters will say he regunvinated and brought millions and millions of dollars to the Clevand market so he doesn’t owe Clevand anything. Some will say Clevand did not give Lebron the proper supporting cast to fully succed. Now Lebron does have raw talent and will make any team better with his play alone, but it was Clevland that gave Lebron the opportunity to become the “Mega Star” that he is today. Lebron could have at least gave the common courtesy to inform the organization he would not resign instead of keeping them hanging. That right there showed his lack of appreciation and to an extent his lack of class. Long story short he brought all this to himself and he has to accept all the negative drama. He is a young guy and he has a long career ahead of him. It will be very interesting following him in the years to come to see if he changes the public perception about him by how he handles himself off the court. Only time wil tell….

  • Willie Nabors says:

    You’re absolutely right. In an age where it’s more about entitlement that titles won, the sight of the Mavs winning together was refreshing. The team deserved the win, just as much as Dirk and JKidd deserved to add the ‘champion’ tag to their NBA resumes. Now let’s see if the South Beach Sandcrabs can take the summer to heal their damaged egos, and learn the lesson that has been so effectively taught by some role players, an old guy and one superstar.

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