July 9, 2010, - 1:21 pm
. . . Or do you also not care that NBA star Lebron James chose to go to Miami and play for the Heat?
Last night on ABC News’ “Nightline,” reporter Jon Berman showed videos of Cleveland Cavalier fans crying, getting angry, and burning James’ jersey. (I can’t find the crying video on-line, but here’s much of what happened, below.) My question is, why do they care?
Pro athletes and sports teams (and their owners) are mercenaries. They go wherever they can get the most money and the best opportunities for high dollar endorsement deals. If you are a sports fan who cares either way about James, I have to ask why? He’s laughing at you all the way to the bank. Cha-ching. And no matter where he plays, you’ll never see a dime of it. So, what do you get out of it?
I laugh also at the angry letter Cavs team owner Dan Gilbert sent, as if somehow sports teams are some holy thing to which you make a commitment like marriage or religion. Gilbert lives in the Detroit area. He bought the Cleveland team because it was the only one for sale when he was looking. He ran an illegal gambling ring out of his dorm room at Michigan State University. Gilbert has no ties or allegiance to Cleveland, just to his team, which he’d relocate to another city in a heartbeat given the right money and tax-funded stadium. Team owners and players go to the highest bidder–like a high-class call girl–because they can . . . minus the “high-class.”
Lebron James isn’t exactly a great American role model. He’s a babydaddy who’s fathered at least two kids out of wedlock with his girlfriend. He censored coverage of a college hoops star outplaying him (and seized cameras and film) at his Nike basketball camp. And he listens to “Brian” Manilow on his Ipod. (Well, okay, that last part is forgivable.) Not my kinda”American hero.” Why is he that to so many Americans?
Any fan who cries or whines over it is a loser. When fans start realizing they are being played for rubes and stop funding the palaces for billionaires to own and where multi-millionaires can play, then we’ll be making progress.
So, is it just me who couldn’t care less about Lebron James? Until I get a cut of his multi-millions, I don’t give a whit about it. Why do you?
Tags: basketball, Cleveland Cavaliers, crying, Dan Gilbert, fans, Jon Berman, LeBron James, Miami, Miami Heat, NBA, Nightline, video