Monday, December 6, 2010

The Summer of Lebron

The summer season has always proven to be the highest grossing period for movies out of the entire year. The primetime, the main event, the go-to era. Those certain number of months ranging between around May and the end of August are the money makers for box offices around the world. For whatever reason, when the weather gets warm, or more realistically a scorching boil, patrons seem to flock to the comfortable air conditioned environment of the inside of a movie theater to catch their most anticipated blockbuster. Although I've gotten into the habit of bringing a sweat shirt with me because that "comfortable air conditioning" can begin to feel like January especially during a two hour film with a large ice cold Sprite. Plus that type of heads up consideration really impresses the ladies. But on to the topic at hand. This summer's most anticipated blockbuster is not on the big screen this year. It has all the specifics you would want in a big budget film as well, in fact, it probably takes the cake, and ice cream, money wise. Suspense, drama, laughs, excitement, thrills and maybe even some horror at the end for some people. This mega event, however, appeals to sports fans especially basketball fans. Especially NBA basketball fans. Yes, my friends I am speaking of the 2010 NBA Free Agency epic that has the entire world entrenched.

I am sure someone out there if at least by some lucky chance happening has heard of the historic Free Agency class for this year. Hasn’t been one like this for a while and probably won’t ever be one like this again for a long time. For those of you who don’t know, I don’t know what to tell you, you obviously live in a cave somewhere out in the hills of Norway and have never been introduced to the wonderful world of technology. For the rest of us, we already know what the deal is and what the details are; but I will briefly recap for our misguided lot who have no idea what I am speaking of. The all-star talent and potential of this year’s class is out of control to say the least with the three most talented young stars leading the way being Lebron James, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh. Each looking to find a team to call home that will not only pay handsomely but enable them to get closer to the holy-grail a.k.a. an NBA championship.

Other notables being the likes of Dirk Nowitzki, Carlos Boozer, Paul Pierce, Shaquille O’Neal and the sometimes still underrated David Lee. Teams have been at a mad scramble since the gates were lowered on July 1st and allowed them to bust into the bidding war for their favorite player. The most sought after being King James himself. As arguably the most gifted basketball player on the planet right now (some purple and gold fans might disagree with this but I could really care less; it’s called an opinion, deal with it). “The Summer of Lebron” as it has been called has fans watching ESPN like it was both a day and night time soap opera. The intrigue that this event has sparked rivals even some of the greatest films ever to be put out there. They seriously should consider making this whole thing into a true story genre film which I am sure someone somewhere will drag their friend to spend their hard earned money to freeze to death in a movie theater and watch this story unfold with heightened cinematography, a twisting plotline and top-notch direction on an IMAX screen.

Being a Knick fan myself (oh what ever might I be thinking, but I must stay true to my hometown team, no matter how badly we may suck and how sad it is that I didn’t even know more than three players names from that team two weeks ago if I tried very hard, but still I claim them) I originally wanted them to stay away from Lebron. Yes, I anticipate many boos and jeers from this decision but I felt like we shouldn’t buy into the hype that failed to take a very good looking Cleveland franchise to the Promised Land two years in a row. I wanted Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh to put on the orange and blue next season. Along with David Lee, we would have been a very formidable squad that might reclaim the glory that we lost so many times in the nineties. Patrick Ewing and John Starks couldn’t bring us a trophy as did Latrell Sprewell and Allan Houston also fail at this task. But this could have been it. Our rise back to the top. No matter who was able to purchase the right to the Lebron throne, we would surely surpass them and make him feel like a lowly peasant once again. But in true Knickerbocker fashion, this was not so.

Instead, we signed former Phoenix Sun Amar’e Stoudemire, who I am not knocking at all, but we also offered him a maximum contract which took us out of the running for Chris Bosh and left us only able to sign one more big name instead of maybe two more. Without a decent player running the point, which we haven’t had in a while, Amar’e won’t be able to single handedly pull us out of the hole that we have been in for what seems like forever. But it’s all said and done only needing the ink on the contract to make it official. Furthermore, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh have decided to both sign with the Miami Heat tremendously boosting their chances at winning a title.

My main topic, I know a main topic is very hard to pick out with me, but my main topic is how this has migrated from being about many talented players with James leading the way to only being about Lebron and no one else. Wade and Bosh did not need an entire hour long show on ESPN to simply announce their next step in their careers. Amar’e did not need this luxury either. Heck, I can’t even remember Michael Jordan requesting his own hour of sports television to make a decision. The last time a press conference was held for a big name free agent that I can recall of with real importance was that of no. 24 in purple and gold back in 2004, and his announcement still didn’t take an entire hour plus he was the only free agent anyone really cared about that year.

I’m not going to lie, now that we have no possibility of getting my dream pair in Wade and Bosh, King James becoming a Knick would be a rather memorable birthday present for me (yes, July 8th is my birthday, shame on anyone who did not remember) but there is, of course, speculation coming from everyone from expert NBA analysts all the way down to the newborn who just took his first breath of air that he could go to the likes of either Chicago (which would be a good move) or Miami (which in my opinion would just be downright cheating; recall the 1996 Chicago Bulls). I was going to make a prediction but whatever I write down here he will simply go the other way. So I’m keeping mum, for now.

I was quite surprised to even see Fox News covering this story like Jesus Christ himself was planning to return to Earth and judge us all and somehow decided to go against the book of Revelations and instead let everyone know that he was going to do on ESPN at 9 p.m. I suppose the Gulf oil spill, depleting economy as well as the World Cup have lost all of their fizzle. Even President Obama is anxiously awaiting Lebron’s decision. This is just getting scary at how much power one man with a basketball can hold. But the world might return to normal after his epic choice is made. Since this is a late post, purposely done that way, many of you won’t read this until after the apparent decision of the decade has already been made. So congratulations to those of you who have won the Publisher’s Lebron James Clearing House Sweepstakes and my condolences to those who didn’t get that special knock on the door. But mark my word, the orange and blue will rise again one day; and I’m not talking about the Mets (Go Yankees!).

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