Why LeBron signs with Cleveland.
Sorry for the lack of posts lately. What can I tell you… it’s been too damn nice around here. Hampton, NH is
not often never called a beautiful beach but at low tide, it can surprise you.
There’s also been not a whole lot that’s gotten my attention. World Cup notwithstanding. But even there, commenting is perilously close to chirping which leads to jinxing and .. aw fuck it .. I’m having a good World Cup.
Thanks Ticos! Oh yeah sure there have been misses but I’m doing better than I did in football for sure. I mean to write up something for the round of 16 but in case I don’t just put me down for Chile, Netherlands, Uruguay, Costa Rica, France, Argentina, Germany, and USA. Toughest picks are Argentina (finally looked in form last game), Netherlands (Mexico is really good; Holland simply really really good); USA (if they play their Germany game again, they’ll beat Belgium).
On to the subject for today:
Why LeBron comes to the Cavs.
Now then, I’ve been compiling a list of reasons why I think LeBron comes back to the Cavs. I find the national takes uniformly miss the mark when they focus on ‘best chance to win’ angles or pairing with Carmelo talk or Riles’ savvy team-building capability or -omg- Shabazz Napier. I think they’re hopelessly missing some of the bigger factors that will drive him, it so let me walk through a handful of reasons I think LeBron will be back.
Because I think, in his heart, he ‘wants’ to be back in Cleveland. The question is can it be rationalized.
1. Cleveland is a relevant sports town with teams on the up and with swaggy bros to hang with.
Do you buy the big-bro/little-bro stuff between LeBron and TT? I do sure, why not. Rich Paul’s Klutch Sports Management has seven clients, it might be nice to get two of them together.
Another Cleveland sports figure is paired up with another of LeBron’s posse. JFF is using Maverick Carter’s LRMR Management for his marketing.
I dunno man, you can’t tell me LeBron wouldn’t love seeing this guy courtside at the Q. Layered on top of this is that the Browns are about to break through. LeBron will want to be around when the Browns become a big deal. Don’t care about his having been a Cowboys fan because this:
Leaving the high school prodigy aspect aside, there are other ways in which Wiggins and LeBron compare. Such as “how to dress like a number one overall pick.”
Just cropped out of this view are The Law Offices of ClevelandFrowns, esq..
LeBron has had the 330 area code on his right forearm for a long time. But last year he added Akron to his right shoulder.
I’ve lost track at everything LeBron has given back to his high school. (Help me out Zac Jackson!) I know there’s bikes and football uniforms and didn’t he drop a mill to renovate the gym? Obviously he loves his school and obviously he still maintains friendships with classmates. Less obvious is whether the chatter about his kids being enrolled in Bath area school this fall is true or not. But it wouldn’t surprise and it definitely would make sense that LeBron would like his kids to go to SVSM for high school.
Savannah and the kids.
Lookit, you just don’t wear the Akron name or get the Akron tatts or stay connected to the Akron high school if there isn’t a very special unbreakable bond. There’s simply more evidence that LeBron’s heart is in Northeast Ohio than there is that it isn’t.
But don’t take my word for it, here’s what his wife — a SVSM alumna — thinks about after living in Miami last four years.
I’ll include Rich Paul in the “Home” part of this analysis since he just moved Klutch into 3000 square feet of office space on Public Square (Cleveland). I don’t know about the rest of you, but for the longest time, I thought LeBron’s entourage were basically lucky
parasites (too harsh) remoras who hit the buddy lottery in high school. Then I saw an article in ESPN Mag that made me rethink my view:
IN THE SUMMER of 2011, Paul, James, Dwyane Wade and others were in the Bahamas, just weeks after the Heat had been upset by Dallas in the Finals. The dinner table in their rented mansion was full of steak, seafood, fruit and more, but the mood was sour. James and Wade were beating themselves up, trying to explain what happened. Paul stepped in. “Man, it wasn’t meant for y’all to win.”
“Man, what are you talking about?” said an irked James.
“The reason you didn’t win it is that you weren’t being you,” Paul said. “You were playing with a lot of anger, being someone you’re not. If God had let you win, you would’ve felt like you should be that person — angry, thinking everybody’s against you, not having fun on the court. That’s not you.”
“Man, whatever,” said James. “I’m not trying to hear this.”
“It’s bigger than what you did on the floor, Bron. It started from day one, when you decided to be someone else. God took you from your highest point to your lowest point so you could be humble, so you could look in the mirror and be a better player. Experience is the best teacher.”
James was quiet. But the words, uttered by one of the few men who can deliver King James an unpopular message, hit home. Before long in interviews, at his camp, in the mirror, LeBron was saying the exact same thing.
I find Paul’s counsel very wise. His entourage might have miscalculated on The Decision broadcast, but the holistic wisdom from the passage above tells us LeBron’s team is capable of working at a level above anything Darren Rovell could ever conceive of.
It’s also an indicator that LeBron is grounded enough to appreciate what all the national bi-coastal analysts fail to understand…
There are many reasons LeBron will come back and but the primary one is “home.”
I’m a Cleveland ex-pat. When I graduated from Miami all I wanted was to get the hell out of Ohio. There was a whole big world out there and I wanted to see it. It was a mix of adventure and the grass is greener somewhere else. After having lived in NYC, Chicago, LA, NC, Western NY, and Boston I can tell you that I came to appreciate Cleveland more and would have been happy to come back. Having started a family in Massachusetts, moving back wasn’t in the cards… I’m just saying, though, that I would have been delighted had the opportunity to come back presented itself. I’m just saying that once you’ve got your frame of reference, once you’re satisfied that you’re not missing anything, Northeast Ohio stacks up as a pretty nice place to live.
If you’re reading this you’re maybe ex-Cleveland also. (A majority of my pageviews come from outside Ohio.) Even if you don’t share my (perhaps romanticized) view about returning to live in NEO, you are at least maintaining your bond to the area by checking in on a Cleveland-focused blog. I.e., there _is_ a bond.
Welp, LeBron is a Cleveland ex-pat too. He’s done the jet-skis-and-strip-clubs phase of his life and is able to do what’s important to him. All signs point to his family being most important. All signs point to his strong bond with NEO being intact. All signs point to a solid support group who know what’s inside LeBron and will help him be most whole. PROTIP: pairing up with Carmelo in Houston ain’t it.
- Wade and Bosh owe LeBron. Who’s to say he doesn’t bring them with him to Cleveland? I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s how this week’s “Big three summit” went down. LeBron: I’m going back to Cleveland. Wade/Bosh: We ain’t. LeBron: Thanks a lot bros.
- The wild card I see in all this is Kyrie. Man was he off last year. LeBron coming back could re-energize him (and keep him around). One wonders if that is why he wasn’t traded pre-draft because absent something as significant as LeBron, Kyrie shows all signs of leaving town at the first opportunity.
- Don’t see the Dan Gilbert saga as any sort of a barrier to return. As an owner, Gilbert has proven himself willing to spend to the max to build a top team. The Baron Davis and Shaquille acquisitions prove it. Compared to Mickey Arison and there’s no comparison. Actually it’s worse. LeBron may not have had the best supporting cast when he left the Cavs but it wasn’t for lack of spend. The year’s Heat supporting cast was on par with the 2010 Cavs and was directly due to an unwillingness to take on luxury taxes.
- Blatt runs an offense. This would be a new experience for LeBron having played for non-coaches in Mike Brown and Erik Spoelstra and having lost a couple times to coaches who coach (Pop and Rivers). This would be intriguing for LeBron.
- There will be no Decision and no ridiculous unveiling party.
I know ESPN types won’t understand it. Anyone who lives in a non-flyover place will kill him for it. But I think there’s every reason to think LeBron does what’s right for him and his family and comes home to the Cavs.