As the Miami Heat battle the legendary Boston Celtics for their second shot in as many years at an NBA championship (they lost to the Dallas Mavericks in the finals last year), the anti-LeBron James and the Heat sentiment seems to be as great as ever. But why do so many people have a distaste for everything LeBron? Common Sense Conspiracy takes a closer look.
LeBron was America’s sweetheart at first. He jumped from high school in Akron, Ohio to the Cleveland Cavaliers, a team that swam in mediocrity until the now three-time NBA Most Valuable Player arrived. Touted as the heir apparent to Michael Jordan (of course, highly debated as long as supposed Illuminati-henchman Kobe Bryant is around), LeBron became a fan favorite. He played on a crappy team, and his amazing feats on the court made them a contender year after year. But they never could quite get over the hump and bring home an NBA championship. Then, LeBron made the controversial move to Miami to team up with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh to form the equivalent of an NBA supergroup. Many people felt that Miami was trying to buy a championship with this kind of star power at their disposal, and LeBron egotistical “The Decision” special on ESPN only increased the media spectacle surrounding him. The special program kept viewers on edge waiting for him to decide if he would stay with Cleveland or leave for the Heat. Of course, LeBron departed his virtual hometown favorites, citing that he was not getting the support he needed to win championships. And after all, championships are what every NBA superstar wants.
It left Cavalier fans shell shocked as their hero, not just on the court but all around the community, left them high and dry. Cleveland immediately returned to mediocrity without James, and the savior of Cleveland became public enemy #1 overnight. Sports pundits said the Miami Heat would be unstoppable and would steamroll the competition. Only, it didn’t work out quite as planned. The Heat couldn’t deliver. Now, LeBron is working on another try if he can get by the Boston Celtics, as most basketball experts expect him to do fairly easily.
LeBron didn’t just draw the ire of fans in his home state; hating LeBron became the new national pass-time. When the Heat faced off against the Dallas Mavericks for the NBA title in 2011, ratings were up as millions wanted to see LeBron fail. But why all of this hatred for someone that was once touted as Michael Jordan reincarnated? Simple. People value loyalty. And they like to believe that championships cannot be bought.
If LeBron James had stayed with Cleveland and never won a championship, he would have been loved and revered. But the fact that he abandoned ship and tried to assemble a Dream Team in the NBA, not just the Olympics, left many pro basketball fans with a bad taste in their mouth. Now, he faces even more scrutiny because, thus far, the Dream Team has not been able to deliver. But that could change in a couple of weeks. Will the public look at things any differently if LeBron and the Heat can bring home the gold this time around? Probably not. LeBron now faces the dreaded asterisk. If he doesn’t win, everyone laughs at him because they were supposed to dominate. If he does win, everyone chalks it up to buying a championship. The dynamic this time around is only making things more interesting. Chris Bosh has been injured for much of the playoffs, and it is still unknown if he will return in time for the showdown with the Celtics, or the finals, if they make it that far. That means that one-third of the “supergroup” is gone, and yet LeBron and Wade are dominating nonetheless. Does that give them a little more credibility?
As the truncated NBA season heads to its finale, it looks like we will be witnessing another attempt for LeBron to claim his first NBA title. What do you think?