Wednesday, February 26, 2014

The Mt. Rushmore of LeBron's Future Suitors!

The Ringer 2 poster
Four years ago, I fucking loathed this topic. It was the absolute last thing that I wanted to write about. But in 2014, it is much, much more interesting and intriguing to me. Oh, don’t worry, we are going to be bludgeoned to death with this a lot over the coming months, but I want to get ahead of the times and fire off my take on the topic today. What is it, you ask? LeBron’s The Decision Part Deux coming this summer!

Here’s the thing: even if the Heat win their third straight title this June, I don’t think that that will matter at all. He’s gone. I am well aware that no superstar has ever left a three time champion but when has LeBron acted like past superstars? Maybe I’m forgetting about all of those times that George Mikan threw powder in the air (although it was probably dandruff in his case and I love making Mikan references). Just look at the Heat though. That roster is getting shakier and more brittle by the day. Also, why would you play with Mario Chalmers if you didn’t have to? I don’t believe for one second that he is going to commit to three more years there. He has to see that if Indiana hasn’t already passed them (they’re at least in the same neighborhood) that they will be very soon. LeBron is in title-hording mode now. In my opinion, he’s going to just keep committing to places for 3-4 years and then will re-evaluate his circumstances and that is really smart.

Randall Stevens wrote about Bron’s Mount Rushmore claims last week. That’s what he desperately wants: to be universally considered one of the four best basketball players to ever live. That is a lofty goal but he can most definitely get there with savvy free agency decisions and numerous titles. If anything, it’s nice to hear more “being the best to ever live” and a lot less “global icon” nonsense. This is what you want from superstar athletes.

That is why today, before we start predicting where LeBron will call home in 2015, I figured that I would unleash my MOUNT RUSHMORE OF LEBRON’S NEXT TEAM CANDIDATES! OK, here is a rundown on possible suitors who didn’t make the cut for this Rushmore for a variety of reasons.

Lakers – He wants to be better than Kobe. He isn’t going there to help Kobe vulture two more rings. Not happening.
Heat – Maybe it’s more likely than I give it credit, but he’ll have to kill himself over the next three years carrying that franchise even more than he is now.
76ers – DARK HORSE ALERT! Drooler tells me that Philly has 40 million in cap space this offseason to go along with a pretty good young corps of Thad Young, MCW, Nerlens, and a guaranteed top 3 pick. Plus, a big market with title-starved moron fans has to be a little bit enticing.
Blazers/Suns – Definitely great situations to go into but I just don’t see LeBron playing out west unless it is in LA
Warriors – Now THIS would be a lot of fun but they are in salary cap hell and Mark Jackson might not know what to do with a guy that has this much LEMPH and STREMPH. And now, the Mount Rushmore of LeBron Suitors:

LA Clippers – They could pull this off easily although it would require a trade due to the cap. LA gives MIA Blake Griffin and two first round picks. BOOM. Not a bad consolation prize at all since the alternative would be LeBron just walking away for nothing. Not to sound like Simmons, but who says no to that? The only issue is that the Clippers will always play second fiddle in LA and Don Sterling is a shithead owner. If LeBron leaves the east coast, this is the only option I see that makes sense.

Chicago – Once they finally take Carlos Boozer out back and euthanize his corpse with the amnesty clause this Summer, they are going to be able to afford a max player. For whatever reason, the Bulls seem to have an odd fascination with Carmelo which is confusing to me. I can’t see him and Thibs getting along at all. But I still think the same thing now as I did four years ago—he isn’t going to Michael’s town to play in Michael’s shadow. Plus, I think that he truly hates Noah as most people should.

Cleveland – I’m going to try my ass off not to come off like a homer here, but the “go back home” narrative will always need to be considered. I do feel that at some point before his career is over, he will come back. It would be nice if he was still in his Prime99 though and not in his Jordan Wizards years. Let’s be honest here: if you win a title in Cleveland and end the drought, you are a GOD. Hell, that automatically puts you on all Mount Rushmores. If LeBron is being transparent here and solely focusing on titles and his legacy, then it makes more than a little sense to go back. It’s not as if were empty on talent. It is there, but it’s misguided and unsure of itself. I’m not predicting that at all, people that don’t read, but I am saying a lot of wrongs could be righted by everyone involved (from the owner to the player to the fans) if they got remarried for a few years and make a big run at a title. And now that I wrote this, Kyrie will probably demand to be traded today.

NY Knicks – I can scream as much as I want to about how winning a title in NE Ohio would define his career, but that pales in comparison to the MSG stage. If he won a championship for the Knicks, holy shit would that be annoying. The Knicks are also in salary cap Hell and are run horribly but Joe Johnson has proven that any contract can be dealt if you are willing to eat enough shit. Yes, I’m talking about Amare. Granted, they are a few months away from their best player being Tim Hardaway Jr. but the Knicks are still the fucking Knicks. This move would also be for his legacy although it might not be the right time to go to NYC. Maybe in three or four years after his next contract is opted out of.

While I say that I think he’s done in Miami, I also understand that they are likely the favorites to retain his ELITE services. But it is no fun at all to make a “will pick up his option” prediction. It’s fun to root for chaos and the hope that Miami “fans” have their own post-Decision sad fest. BUT, if he decides to move on from SOUF BEACH and take his talents elsewhere, my heart says Cleveland but my head says out west (see you in LA, go Clippers…ELITE Cramer reference). In case you were wondering, my genitals think that he will CARRY THE FLAG and join the Jackets. And if lamenting LeBron’s future on the court does nothing for you, how about the rumors that he will be starring in Space Jam 2? Fun FACT: I’ve never seen the original Space Jam. Thoughts? Predictions? Old Man Fashioning a Kayak Out of a Log?

30 comments:

Randall Stevens said...

He'll probably avoid New York so he doesn't get shot by Raymond Felton. What a chubby twat.

GMoney said...

That's an ELITE story and #1 example of why famous people should never get married.

Let's also not forget that the mastermind behind The Decision was actually Drew and that is a FACT.

Randall Stevens said...

In all seriousness, I've done a complete 180 and no longer think Cleveland is the place. There's just too much chaos there and I keep forgetting Gilbert handled that situation as badly as any owner could have. There's a good chance LeBron is still salty about that...and for good reason. I know I would be.

It's gonna be either Miami or LA...probably Miami. No chance he plays in Chicago under Jordan's shadow and no chance he wants to be in the same arena as Spike Lee for every home game. Not does he want Carmelo's sloppy seconds. The heat are going to get what they can out of Wade's corpse and make room for a younger, better star. Bosh will finish up his contract, they won't resign him and they'll build around LeBron. As much as LeBron wants his legacy on Mount Rushmore, I don't think he wants to build his resume by hopping teams like Shaq did. Leaving one team looks like you were just trying to get out of a bad situation you were drafted to, leaving multiple teams makes you look flighty.

GMoney said...

Bosh isn't opting out. He would be cray to do so. Neither is Wade because he wouldn't get half of that on the open market. Sure, like I said, Miami is probably the favorite here to retain his services because NO STATE TAX but that is lame. I demand tears from their fake fans.

I don't think that leaving the Heat would be all that big of a deal actually. He did what he was brought there to do. The situation is only going to get worse. So he is leaving to start over.

Legacy titles come with the Clippers, Knicks, or Cavs. You win a ring in one of those places...that's a fucking miracle. But the Knicks make the Cavs look like the Spurs.

I will always feel like the Cavs have a shot. It makes sense to come full circle but we'll probably end up with his Olajuwon Raptors years.

Grumpy said...

I don't care; the NBA is fixed.

On more important matters, RibFest dinner reservations are set for 6:00 p.m. Saturday, March 8. Cocktails hour and lying about what great athletes we all were begins at 5:00 in the restaurant bar.

Remember, Ide thinks RibFest is March 15 to honor him (ELITE Ides of March reference);be careful not to slip up and give him the real date.

GMoney said...

Thanks, Grump, I was going to talk about RibFest on Friday but I'm glad to see that my secretary is doing her job.

Anonymous said...

I think you have to have the Heat on the list - youre nuts if you dont... especially when you just said Miami is probably the favorite to "retain his services".

Not being a homer here at all, cause dude is a scumbag, but I think Cleveland has more of a shot than most think. Dude is still pretty loved in Akron and spends a ton of time here with family/friends and doing community service shit.

I dont think playing in Jordan's shadow bothers him - he did team up with two other all-stars to win titles, rather than doing it on his own. He obviously doesnt care HOW he wins, as long as it gets done. Unfortunately I think Chicago is a close third behind #1 Miami, and #2 Cleveland. NY is #4 for sure.

March basketball is in 3 days, fuck the NBA.

Seal

Jeff said...

TWOLVES with K Love and ricky ruuubs.

March CBB in 3 days. Yes! The season finally starts and Flag Carrying continues!

I guess it's a good thing they're not the Akron Cavs.

I hope he announces he's going back to Cleveland and then does something else.

Anonymous said...

ELITE reference Grump.

I get into Columbus stupidly early, so I will be up for a few Schaeffer's. I'm debating on renting a car, because fucking Columbus necessitates that, but we will see how I feel about plunking down roughly $400 between that and a hotel.

I hope LeBron comes to NYC. Because, why not?

Ide

Grumpy said...

Hotel? Rental car? You mean not one of these local fuckers will pick you up or offer you a guest room/couch for the night?

Wait, it's Ide. Never mind.

Prime99 said...

LeBron going back to the Cavs is a 1% chance. It is far more likely that he opts in this year, then recruits Kyrie away from the Cavs next year. Now that would be funny.

Anonymous said...

God damnit, Prime, I've never even thought of that and it actually does make more sense than Lebron coming to CLE. Dont count out what Pat Riley can do with that team. That's why the Heat are the huge front runner in this race.

Seal

GMoney said...

The Heat can't afford Kyrie. It would be excellent trolling but isn't going to happen.

Seal, not sure if it is the UK education or what, but clearly you can't read. Look, I believe that he opts out but that doesn't mean that Miami is in his rearview mirror already. There is probably a damn good chance that he stays, but again, fuck them and their fans. I hope that they choke on all the dicks. Even if he goes somewhere other than Cleveland, I want it to happen because Miamians are the worst.

But you're right. I think that the Cavs have a much better chance than people give them credit. That being said, I only mean maybe a 10-15% chance and far from a certainty. He knows that he handled that wrong and needs to make REPARATIONS TO ME.

You answered your own question, Grump. No one will offer to house or drive around Ide. Especially Dut. He learned that lesson the hard way.

GMoney said...

Seal, quit being dumb and listening to Prime over me. The Heat can literally not afford him. He may go but it won't be for Souf Beach.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, it's a giant pain in the ass to stay at someone's house when everyone lives on the outskirts of Columbus. I'm sure I could be persistent and coax someone to cart me around, however, I really would hate to put anyone out like that. Except Dut. However this year, I am rolling as is, dew rags and timbs (ELITE reference). Zero baggage thanks to the lack of fantasy drafts needing my laptop.

Ide

Anonymous said...

Im not sure you can be calling me dumb, when you didnt put Miami in your rushmore. So dumb.

Seal

Anonymous said...

IDE will not be stepping foot in my car this year. It's a miracle that we're both still alive after his shenanigans last year. I think he owes me ribs and at least my first 10 beers for the night.

I'm sick of the term mt Rushmore. Thanks, espn.

Dut

GMoney said...

If anyone is interested in the best thing on the internet today, might I direct you to the current Twitter war of your mom jokes between John Rocker and PFTCommenter. Just great stuff.

Again, I believe that he opts out and thus ending his relationship with Miami. No Mount Rushmore for Pat Riley, bruh!

Prime99 said...

Who said it had to be the Heat?

Anonymous said...

G$...Thank you for reminding everyone hear that I'm solely responsible for The Decision and ripping the hearts out of Cleveland sports fans for one night. It is an amazing achievement knowing what I did to thousands of Slow Seal's for one night...I guess I should thank LeBron for not picking Cleveland too...otherwise I would have been responsible for one big massive Cleveland party.

He's gonna stick with Miami. Riley is too smart and has the advantage of selling him on whatever vision he has over this whole year.

--Drew

GMoney said...

He's gonna stick with Miami. Riley is too smart and has the advantage of selling him on whatever vision he has over this whole year.

But that's not any fun. If Riley is so smart then explain his UK alum status? UK alum = dumb and slow

The only reason to stay in the bath salts and Cuban capital is NO STATE TAX or so I'm told.

Anonymous said...

Hilton downtown is under $100 a night with my discount. That greatly outweighs staying with pregnant women and Duts rape shack.

Are we still crashing Droolers fake bday party?

Ide

GMoney said...

Were you under the impression that I (or Jeff) was offering up my guest room? Because I was not. You can take your vile vials of black man semen to a hotel.

Cakes said...

Really looking forward to hearing about Lebron non-stop for the next six months!

/shoots self

The Americans tonight!!!!!

GMoney said...

I mean, seriously, if you aren't following along with this PFTC/John Rocker Twitter beef (which is absolutely ELITE) then what are you doing with your life? Asking Rocker if Joe Flacco is ELITE about made me fall out of my chair.

Randall Stevens said...

I'm not sure how Ide is going to be able afford a hotel and a rental car after buying $200 worth of a rib bet.

Prime99 said...

That PFT/Rocker convo is phenomenal. PFT called himself a lunch pail fella and said terry Pendelton type guys took his playing time. So great IMO.

Anonymous said...

We should get Rocker to comment here daily.

--Drew

GMoney said...

I think my favorite part was when Rocker started gloating about his stats and PFTC asked him about his issues with the IRS and PEDs.

Cakes said...

I just checked out that Rocker Twitter war going on. Amazing! My life is now complete.