LeBron Hatred: Delusional, He’s Still the Best

Posted: January 6, 2012 in Bunker

I remember when I was in high school, I had an AP US History teacher who was a staunch conservative. He just so happened to be the best and most charismatic teacher I had at a school that lacked (to put it nicely) adequate teachers. He preached to me about the greatness of Ronald Reagan and often mentioned how George W. Bush would be seen as an American hero and one of the great leaders of our generation when all is said and done. He was hawk, so I was a hawk. He said things like “Liberals yap about personal responsibility and wanting government handouts,” so I used the same talking points as well. I was a parrot and I was of the age where I could be molded into a conservative, although I was a black kid from the inner city. I even read conscience of a conservative by Barry Goldwater going into my freshman year of college, which gave me a strong theoretical background in idea of conservatism. On paper it sounded amazing! I thought everyone should live their lives that way. So again, I took these talking points and applied them into arguments against my liberal friends (everyone else in my world). Although I was able to survive in the inner city based on some of the great liberal programs, I conveniently ignored it, because it fit my narrative. Somewhere along the lines (college) I decided to drop and deal with realities and facts. Today I’m a liberal (for better or for worse).

I say all that to say, I have finally reached the point of disgust and annoyance when it comes to the subject of LeBron James. Despite all the evidence (statistics and just watching basketball), there are a large segment “basketball fans” who continue to try to make arguments for other players that are better or on the level of one LeBron James. I feel the need to address this only because I have had arguments over and over where I am in the minority of people who think LeBron is a great player. I will argue that much of this is due to what I suffered from when I was 17: Listening to talking points and ignoring the facts. 


First let me lay out my relationship as a fan with one LeBron James.

The Cleveland Years: 


I could not stand LeBron. Mainly because he played for Cleveland. Cleveland. Worst of all his team was garbage and somehow they won 60 games every year. It didn’t make any sense to me. There’s no way that guy was that good. In hindsight, the reason I couldn’t stand him was because I had to listen to Cleveland fans jump on a bandwagon of a team that should have been contracted years ago. The last time I thought of Cleveland was when I realized my Terrell Brandon rookie card was no longer worth anything. LeBron, for all of his “greatness” was a boring, uncontroversial player. Cookie-cutter, “he had fun playing the game” and won MVPs. He didn’t stand for anything and he was the chosen one. The ratings even for his greatest successes were awful.

The Decision: Wow. That was weird. I tuned in though. I liked his gall though.

Miami Years: It was clear that the Decision, the subsequent ridiculous party and this new-found love for Kobe Bryant going around the league put the NBA back on the map. I’m cool with it. And you know what I like LeBron now. He created the controversies and the rivalries basketball needed outside of Boston and LA. The ratings don’t lie.

***

Debunking the Myths 


“LeBron Didn’t Show Up in the Playoffs in 2010” – Except LeBron led his team in Points and Assists in all three rounds prior to the NBA Finals. Including carrying a struggling Dwayne Wade through the Conference Finals and shutting down the MVP Derrick Rose. Yes, LeBron had an epic collapse for LeBron in the finals. He did not put up anywhere near his average stats 25PPG  7RPG and 7APG (Regular Season) and  17.8 points, 6.8 assists, and 7.1 rebounds (Finals average). However, considering that only about 3 or 4 men in history have averaged anywhere near what LeBron has, you think he would get the respect. But okay fine.


“LeBron can’t close/ LeBron isn’t clutch” – Again I point to both the Boston series and the Chicago Bulls series to disprove that. Not to mention the Detroit Series when he SINGLEHANDEDLY  defeated a team with 25 straight points leading a pathetic Cleveland team to the NBA Finals [WATCH IT. JUST WATCH IT]. I don’t know when clutch became making the final shot with less than 10 seconds. But if you want to make that argument again see here.

[youtube:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3fD1MNjkPFs%5D

But just to end this let’s just throw out the statistics:

Now at this juncture can anyone make the case RATIONALLY that there are better players the LeBron. Apparently the test is championships. Durant has 0, Rose has 0 and none of them can even touch LeBron on either side of the ball. Yes, Kobe has 5, but are we going to take a 33 year old 16 years in the league Kobe against a legendary player in his prime? Dirk?

Now that I’m done with this rant. I’m embarrassed that I even wrote it… Oh well.

2011-2012 Season:

GP FGM-FGA   FGM-FGA 3PM- FG% 3PA – 3P% FTA  – FTM FT% RPG APG   BLKPG STLPG PFPG              TO
2011-12 Regular Season 7 36.1 11.1-18.7 .595 0.0-0.1 .000 7.6-9.6 .791 7.7 7.4 0.9 2.0 1.9 2.9 PPG 29.9
Career 634 40.1 9.9-20.5 .480 1.4-4.1 .329 6.6-8.9 .745 7.1 7.0 0.8 1.7 2.0 3.3 27.7
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