A Different Perspective: Why Are We So Invested In LeBron James Decision?
In many ways LeBron James is the perfect story. He grew up in Akron, Ohio. Became a star a St. Vincent-St. Mary’s. Married his high school sweetheart. And got drafted to “save” his hometown team the Cleveland Cavaliers. An organization which went to the eastern conference finals just twice since their inaugural season in 1970.
We all want to see the perfect ending to that story.
Since being drafted number one overall in the 2003 draft, LeBron James has done one thing that very few number one picks can say. Especially one that has been critiqued and on television since high school. He has actually lived up to the expectations.
During his time in Cleveland he averaged 27.8 points, 7 assists, 7 rebounds, and 1.7 steals per game.
He played in six all-star games (two game MVP’s), won the season most valuable player award twice and almost won the finals in 2007. He also won the bronze and gold medals at the 2004 and 2008 Olympic games respectively.
James was loved in not only Ohio about across the nation. He was the PERFECT star athlete, with seemingly the PERFECT story. Other than a receding hairline we had nothing bad to say about James. He never got arrested, never got another woman pregnant, in fact he was an open supporter of the Boys & Girls Club of America.
Until “The Decision…”
Because he couldn’t find a player who wanted to spend their career in Cleveland, he did what no star of his stature ever did. Chose to switch teams in the prime of his career. To win not 1, not 2, not 3…. yea, you get the point.
Two championships later, and four finals appearances altogether, maybe we as NBA fans are tired of booing James. Only because they created a team that at one time we thought was only possible in franchise mode on NBA Live.
Our mindset at the time was simple. Screw LeBron. He ruined what was the perfect story. We didn’t care about him, we were selfish because in a society where NOTHING seems to happen the way we want it to, this story was being written as if Walt Disney had been behind it.
Now two days after the forth anniversary of “The Decision,” we as NBA fans want to see him back. Because although the story wasn’t written out the way WE wanted it, it still has the potential to have the perfect ending.
To team up with Kyrie Irving, and a young nucleus of players that can maybe…JUST MAYBE, bring a championship to his hometown team. With the addition of James, the Cavaliers would possibly bring on free agents and good friends Ray Allen or Mike Miller with him. This could even give Cleveland motivation to put together a trade for Timberwolves’ superstar big man Kevin Love.
Even executives from different teams want to see it happen!
No matter what ends up happening, popular culture will remain invested in the story of LeBron James. He is the best basketball player in the world. He became the reason NBA free agency has seemingly been on pause since it began at midnight.
To basketball fans, maybe they just want their team to have a chance in the Eastern Conference again. But I think it’s bigger than that.
At the end of the day, in a world full of lies, deceit, and unknowns, maybe…JUST maybe as a society we just want a reminder that the perfect story can still exist.