Ev­ery­one has take on LeBron’s lat­est

From ou­trage and dis­may in Cleve­land to eu­pho­ria and dis­be­lief in Mi­ami, LeBron James’ de­ci­sion to leave be­hind the Cava­liers for the Heat sparked wide-rang­ing re­ac­tion among NBA fans and me­dia who cover the league. Here are a hand­ful of ex­cerpts about “T

Austin American-Statesman - - SPORTSBRIEFING -

Maybe this hap­pens when you get too much, too soon. Maybe it hap­pens when you for­get where you came from, or what you mean to the peo­ple of North­east Ohio.

But LeBron James should feel a sense of shame and pain for putting to­gether a self-serv­ing ESPN spe­cial to in­form the world that he no longer in­tends to play for the Cava­liers. To sharpen the in­sult, he ti­tled his switch to the Mi­ami Heat as “The De­ci­sion.”

Yes, that’s just like The Fum­ble, The Drive, The Move, The Shot and other aw­ful mo­ments in the his­tory of Cleve­land sports — and he picked the name?

Doesn’t any­one in the James camp have a clue what peo­ple back home will think? Doesn’t any­one care? Of if they men­tioned it to James, doesn’t he get it?

Terry Pluto

Cleve­land Plain dealer Now, Cleve­landers truly see it for them­selves: He was a fan of the Cow­boys, the Yan­kees — never the Browns and In­di­ans. He was a fron­trun­ner, and he just made the most fron­trun­ner move in the his­tory of the NBA. Off to Mi­ami with Riles, D-Wade and Chris Bosh.

New York would’ve been hard, and maybe Cleve­land would’ve been the hard­est. With those state tax laws in Florida, he isn’t tak­ing less money with the Heat. He’s just tak­ing less risk and less bur­den in his cham­pi­onship chase.

“This whole idea that he makes his own de­ci­sions, that … went out the win­dow with this,” one NBA ex­ec­u­tive said. “Some­day, he’s go­ing to look back at this and not be­lieve that he let those kids at LRMR (a mar­ket­ing firm) talk him into do­ing this. This idea that he’s his own man … come on, he’s a fol­lower. And he’s fol­low­ing all the way to Mi­ami now.”

Adrian Wo­j­narowski

Ya­hoo SPortS We had been told for more than a week to ex­pect it.

It was still stun­ning. He did it with bom­bas­tic ex­cess, live on ESPN, in a narcissistic, ego-feed­ing, ridicu­lous hour­long tele­vi­sion spe­cial au­gustly en­ti­tled “The De­ci­sion.’’ It was the per­fect grue­some mar­riage of the most self-serv­ing, self-pro­mot­ing net­work in his­tory and a mega-su­per­star in the mood to ra­pa­ciously cel­e­brate the man in the mir­ror.

Many peo­ple else­where in the coun­try surely thought Thurs­day night’s show was crass, un­duly mean to the poor, jilted peo­ple of Cleve­land, some­how just not right.

I must tell you, though: Down here, Heat fans sort of liked it!

Here in South Florida, we weren’t hear­ing the rest of the coun­try’s muttering com­plaint be­cause we’re too busy blow­ing car horns, high-fiv­ing strangers, do­ing shots to our un­fath­omably great luck, say­ing, “Can you (bleep)ing be­lieve it!?” and mak­ing sounds like this: “WOOOOOOOOOOO!”

As for Cava­liers fans feel­ing an­gry and be­trayed? Get over it, mis ami­gos. Play­ers leave. Ever heard the phrase “greener pas­tures’’? Be­sides, when Col­umn A is Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh and liv­ing on South Beach and Col­umn B is far less of a sup­port­ing cast and liv­ing in Cleve­land, well, let’s just say Mensa mem­ber­ship is not re­quired to reach the con­clu­sion James did.

Greg Cote

Mi­aMi her­ald Peo­ple want loy­alty, as if that’s go­ing to cover things. Just imag­ine if LeBron spent an en­tire, ti­tle-free ca­reer in Cleve­land. In 25 years, when the greats are gath­ered for a trib­ute to the all-time leg­ends, the chat­ter could go like this:

“Hey, it’s Tim Dun­can, four-time cham­pion.”

“Look, it’s Kobe, wear­ing all five of his rings.” “There’s LeBron. … He was … loyal.” Awk­ward si­lence. “Have you seen KG?” Don’t ask James to be loyal if you won’t grant him an ex­cep­tion to the ring rule. (As in Jor­dan, Magic and Bird on one side of the tee at the char­ity golf tour­na­ment, Ewing, Barkley and Malone on the other).

But it’s not too much to ask him to be re­spect­ful on the way out. In this case pro­mo­tion took prece­dence over pro­to­col. He strung ev­ery­one along, tried to build the drama at the ex­pense of the com­mon cour­tesy of no­ti­fy­ing teams of his plans so they could get about con­struct­ing their teams.

Ev­ery­one as­so­ci­ated with this looks bad.

J.A. Adande

eSPn.CoM

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