LeBron James has taken out a full-page ad in his hometown paper in which he thanks the people of Akron for supporting him -- and doesn't mention the city where he played basketball the last seven years.
Look, LeBron has always differentiated between Akron and Cleveland. LeBron grew up in Akron, Ohio which is an entirely different city than Cleveland, Ohio.
And I might be weird (well...) but I've never really differentiated that much between the two. Of course they're different cities... but they're different cities in Northeast Ohio. A lot of people (I'd even say most) don't live in Akron or Cleveland proper. They live in suburbs.
Myself, I grew up in Hudson. When I've had to explain where it's located, I've always said it's about halfway between Cleveland and Akron. If you want to go see the Cavs, Browns or Indians play, you drive into Cleveland. If you want to see the Aeros or Zips play, you drive into Akron. Either way, you're making a trip into a city.
I grew up reading about Cleveland sports in the Akron Beacon Journal. The ABJ has always covered Cleveland sports. Both Brian Windhorst and Terry Pluto first covered LeBron for the Beacon. Pluto will still write about the Zips (or Golden Flashes) in the PD. Sure, they aren't the same city, but it's not like the locals differentiate between the two all that much.
As for the letter itself... whatever. If it would've come out the day after The Decision, it might've not looked so petty or cheap. But LeBron's letter came after Z's own ad (in which he thanked Cavs fans and the city of Cleveland). I can only imagine the meeting at LRMR:
"Hey, you see the ad that Z took out? He wrote a letter thanking the fans"
"Cool, we should do the same thing, but make ours much pettier"
If that's how this is gonna be, fine. I know LeBron is probably pissed at Cleveland fans right now and I can't say can I blame him. But he's the one who brought this on himself.
I just hope no one does anything stupid on December 2nd, 2010.