Wednesday, July 07, 2010

"The Decision"

That's what LeBron is calling his 1 hour announcement special on ESPN this Thursday. The Decision.

It fits right in doesn't it? The Drive, The Fumble, The Shot... The Decision.

Blah.

With LeBron announcing his decision on ESPN (something Bill Simmons joked about months ago), Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh filming a documentary about their free agency (only to end up in Miami together), this whole thing feels like a charade. But hey, maybe LeBron really has no idea where he'll go and he's just trying to help out some charities... right. (Meanwhile, Kevin Durant quietly reupped with OKC for five years).

Say what you will about LeBron, his ego and ESPN, but I gotta say I've been on the edge of my seat. I hate myself for it, but I've been devouring every last rumor. Hell, at the start of Tuesday I was convinced LeBron was staying (the Bosh-to-Cleveland rumors) and by the time I went to bed (post ESPN 1-hour-special announcement) I was sure he was gone. Bitch about his ego all you want, but it worked. People care. LeBron is all over twitter, Facebook and ESPN (and I'm not sure, after all this, which is the most reliable news source).

You have to question the wisdom of the ESPN special, don't you? How is that even going to work? It starts at 9pm and lasts an hour. Is he going to announce at 9? 9:59? And there isn't this a no-win scenario. If he takes a full hour only to announce he's staying in Cleveland, that's extremely anticlimactic. But on the flip side, he wouldn't go on national TV and kick all of Northeast Ohio in the balls... would he?

I just can't help but think that this prime time announcement special means he's out the door. As SI's Lee Jenkins tweeted:
The kind of person who needs a 1 hr tv show to announce a decision is not the kind of person who stays in Cleveland
You can't tell me there's no truth in that.

Twitter is, naturally, all full of rumors. Chad Johnson and Jared Dudley are saying that LeBron is heading to the Knicks (who Chris Broussard says are gaining ground) and Newsday is reporting that the filming of the special will take place in Greenwhich, CT (which Brian Windhorst calls a suburb of NY). Windhorst also says he's been told not to read into the location of the special.

Meanwhile, LeBron spent the day in Akron, playing hoops at his camp with Jamario Moon, Christian Eyenga, Danny Green and Cavs assistant Chris Jent (while Byron Scott looked on). In an irony of ironies, the Cavs (amongst others) are looking to make a last minute push to bring back Carlos Boozer.

Ric Bucher points out that all these late Knick rumors could simply be LeBron building up the drama so people will, you know, actually watch an hour long special on ESPN:
Rumors of NYK having legit shot at LeBron or him going to Mia seem like an attempt by LRMR to create suspense for Thurs show.
At this point, the more bullshit rumors ESPN feeds the public, the better it is for their prime-time Thursday night telecast. Bucher has more:
An NBA exec: "Who does a 1-hour special on how you just ripped the heart out of your hometown?" Now a 1-hr special on why you stayed...
I have to agree with this. At the end of the day, I just can't see LeBron doing this to NE Ohio. I mean, he wouldn't kick us all in the nuts on national TV.

Right?

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Until I found out about the charitable contributions that the announcement show was raising money for I was convinced he was gone. You don't announce to a city like Cleveland on national television your intent to stay. But now, with the way he is unselfishly doing this to raise money for charity it screams I'm staying home. I don't see him doing a good act like that, followed directly by the shittiest thing he could ever do to his hometown.

Nick...

Erik said...

Well, you yourself said you can't help but think that Lee Jenkins is right: The type of guy who needs an hourlong special to announce his decision is the type of guy who craves a bigger stage than Cleveland.

So is LBJ above kicking Cleveland in the nuts on national TV? Hardly. That's showbiz. If he and ESPN can draw final episode of MASH-type viewership by making us his patsy for an hour, he'll do it.

But this could all be a red herring. Something about LBJ says he wouldn't be so obvious as to arrange for his show to be broadcast from Connecticut, then announce that he's signing with the Knicks.

But then again, maybe LBJ realizes that people will think it's all a red herring, and he will indeed sign with the Knicks, thereby double-crossing us.

This is where we are now.

davemanddd said...

cleveland is not his hometown, it's akron. haven't you been paying attention to his carefully scripted comments when he talks about akron, not cleveland, being his home in all of these appearances he has made so far this off-season??? all i can say is that if he does indeed spurn cleveland and takes less money to go elsewhere, he is the biggest douche in the history of vinegar and water.

Ben said...

see, the charity stuff makes me think "sure, I'm completely and utterly fucking over NE Ohio on National Television but I'M DOING IT FOR CHARITY, so it's totally cool"