Sunday, July 11, 2010

The Decision

Dear LeBron,

I loved you. I would have done anything for you.

I defended you when people said you were just an overhyped high school kid. I told them that you would be better than MJ and Magic combined. I told them that you were the Chosen One…my King James.

I defended you when people thought you showboated too much. I told them that it was just confidence.

I defended you when people said Kobe was better. I told them to look at the stats.

I defended you when you couldn't get past Detroit. I told them you just needed a little time to develop as a player.

I defended you when you couldn't get past Orlando. I told them that there were mismatch problems and you needed more support.

I defended you when you said you would participate in the slam dunk contest, but then you didn't. I told them it wasn't in your best interest.

I even defended you when you seemingly quit during the entire 2010 playoffs. I told them that the team chemistry just wasn't there anymore.

Maybe I defended you too much.

Maybe I expected too much…But you told me, "I got a goal…and that's to bring an NBA championship here to Cleveland…And I won't stop until I get it." I guess you lied. And I don't deserve to be lied to. You said your true fans will stick with you, but you also said its all about the team. Don't you understand, true fans stick with the team. You would have eventually won a championship with me. You say you want to win, and Miami may give you a better opportunity to do that. But I feel that you don't really care about winning as much as you say you do. Can you truly say that you left everything you had on the floor after the Celtics series?

You might win in Miami, but it won't feel the same. It will feel diluted. It will feel cheap. It will feel like you took the easy road.

Maybe you don't care about those things. Maybe even if you win multiple championships, it will be superficial. Maybe it's just a way to further advance your brand.

Maybe you don't care about being a legend. You can't become a legend anymore. Kobe Bryant, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Michael Jordan, and Bill Russel are the only true legends. You could have joined them. Er, you could have TRANSCENDED them. You could have brought a championship to your hometown for the first time in 40+ years, but switching teams for the SAKE OF HELP will not allow you to achieve this legendary status.

Why did you hurt me like this? You could have just told me privately. You could have just tweeted it on your new twitter account or on let me know on your new website. I guess you've changed. Or maybe I didn't know you as much as I thought. You made me watch and you had to have all eyes on you. You had to tell EVERYONE. You had to tell everyone for an hour on national television. Did Maverick put you up to it? or was it Jim Gray?

I made "Don't Leave, Lebron" videos with local celebrities and young children pleading for you to stay. Maybe I shouldn't have. The fact that you left me isn't what hurt the most. I understand. You didn't have the supporting cast to win it all. You had to do it all by yourself. You were sick of losing. I'm a depleting place with harsh winters. But you spit in my face with this free agency circus show. You knew it would hurt. You know I've felt the agony of The Catch, The Drive, The Fumble, The Shot, and The Move for years, but you had to add The (1-Hour) Decision.

You said you didn't owe me anything. But you did and still do. You owe me respect. I respected you.
You said you were humbled by free agency. I assure you, there is nothing humble about a 1-hour special promoting yourself. Even if "all" of the proceeds are going to charity.

I am so sorry I couldn't give you all the things you wanted. But I deserve an apology too.


Northeast Ohio

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