First Bucket Over Broadway’s own Chase Thomas comes out as saying he’d prefer Wade to LeBron and now ESPN’s Mark Simon just flat out says he doesn’t want The King at all. Has the world gone crazy? Or just those two guys? Read on for a taste of Simon’s reasoning:
Now, by the miraculous managerial maneuverings of [general manager Donnie] Walsh, the Knicks are in position to make moves that will be game-changers, and will impact the direction of the franchise for the next 10 years.
Yet I can’t get excited about it. And that has to do with a crisis of conscience taking place inside my brain.
See, I don’t want the Knicks to sign LeBron James.
How in the world can a Knicks fan say that? It’s heresy, right?
Well, hear me out, and then say what you wish.
I have two reasons for feeling the way I do.
One is that I don’t want a player to come to New York simply for the sake of his brand. Everything I’ve heard about The King, and all of his actions, indicates that his brand is his No. 1 concern.
[...] If James joins the Knicks, their arena might as well be called Madison Square Zoo, because that’s what it will become. Every game will be the most overhyped event imaginable, and those who own the franchise will take full financial advantage of those who follow the team.
Personally, I think Simon’s first reason is kinda silly. Fearing an overhyped event in New York is like being worried that a Los Angeles event will be too glitzy. It goes with the territory. And while LeBron is most certainly concerned about his global image, there’s been no indication that such a quality would take away from his “oneness” with New York should he come. If he did come, part of it would be because he loves the city, not because of the brilliant team foundation. He loves the Yankees, and probably like many kids thought of, and longed for, the excitement of New York. People have similar views of cities like Paris and Rome (or Los Angeles for actor/model-types).
Yeah, he most likely won’t be taking the subway or buses, but probably even born-and-bred New Yorkers who’re multi-millionaires don’t take the subway anymore (which is ridiculous ‘cuz often the subway’s the fastest way around town rather than limos on the traffic-clogged streets). However, I fully expect that LeBron would indeed relish the opportunity to be engage in the fabric of New York, going to concerts, clubs, sporting events, benefits, all while chowing down on pizza and bagels. He’ll pass on the subways, but he might go for the next very NYC option: taxis.
That said, Simon’s next point does bother me a bit too, although I likely wouldn’t lose any sleep over it.
The other issue I’m dealing with is this: I don’t want to be rooting for the team that robbed the cradle.
LeBron James is meant to play his entire career in Cleveland [...]. LeBron James means more to Cleveland than he will ever mean in New York. He is theirs, not ours.
As I mentioned to Simon, Oklahoma City stole a whole team from another city (and it even included its own handy-dandy superstar, Kevin Durant). I bet a ton of Oklahoma City-ites felt guilty initially, but after the success the team had this year during both the regular season and the playoffs, I don’t think any of ‘em would give them back. Us, we wouldn’t be stealing Cleveland’s team, just their heart. …Yikes, that doesn’t sound nice at all.
Good thing sports ain’t about who’s nicest.