Three Days After “The Decision” — LeBron is Still an Immature Jerk

I am a capitalist at heart.  I have said many times that, if someone wants to sell dog shit by the side of the road, and someone else will pay for it, then good for all.

As such, I have no problems with LeBron James’ decision to leave the Cleveland Cavaliers and join the Miami Heat.  He was unencumbered by any restrictions and will go to work where he wants, at a salary he wants, to play with whom he wants.  LeBron doesn’t have to explain his decision, for it’s his to make.  His decision is no different from any of us deciding what job to take or where to live.

A Smiling, Insensitive, Immature Jerk

Unfortunately, after Thursday night’s LeBronalooza on ESPN, I’m not sure whether to feel sorry for LeBron or to vilify him.  I’m not sure because I don’t know whether Thursday’s evening’s televised “Decision” was his idea or his handlers’ idea or some combination of the two.  Either way, LeBron is really dumb, or he took some really dumb advice.  Either way, LeBron’s reputation is in the toilet, and he seems a like an insensitive jerk.

I’m not the only one who thinks LeBron made a mistake.  Mike Wise of  The Washington Post thinks so.  Bill Plaschke of The Los Angeles Times thinks so.  Gene Wojciechowski of thinks so.  Maureen Dowd of The New York Times thinks so.   David Hinckley of The New York Daily News says we should feel “dirty” after watching the show.

Plaschke may have put it best in the opening few words of his column Friday morning, the day after “The Decision:”

LeBron James is the King, all right.

The King of Crass. The King of Callous. The King of Cowardice.

LeBron – from me to you — here’s what you should have done to avoid me and others calling you a “jerk” (or “former hero,” as Dan Gilbert, the Cavs’ owner called you in a letter to Cavs’ fans).

  1. You should have told each team seeking your services of your decision before you went on television.  For me, that is a matter of respect for them as people.
  2. You should have explained your decision to each team.  It could have been as simple as “I want to go to Miami, because I believe that is where I can best win a championship.”
  3. You should have written a letter to the fans of Cleveland to be released concurrently with the television show, explaining your decision and thanking them for the honor of playing for their team.
  4. On the television show, you should have: a) announced your decision in the first few minutes of the show; b) answered interviewer questions about how and why you made your decision; and c) taken fan questions from the audience, via email, or via Twitter.
  5. Immediately after the show, you should have flown to Cleveland to meet with the local media and fans the next day.
  6. Only then, should you have gone to Miami.

    My Sentiments Exactly

Had you followed my recommendations, LeBron, you would have left in a mature fashion with your head held high.

Instead, you pulled a bit of a Bob Irsay, the late owner who snuck the Baltimore Colts out of town to Indianapolis in the middle of the night.  What Irsay did was bad, but you were worse.  You had the gall to sneak out of Cleveland on national television.

Good luck with your decision.  In our capitalist system, it is your right to leave Cleveland for Miami.  But shame on you for how you made that decision and for being an immature, cowardly jerk.  You’ve certainly lost my respect.