Home / General / REPORT: God Hates Cleveland A Little Less Than She Did Yesterday

REPORT: God Hates Cleveland A Little Less Than She Did Yesterday


Crank comic sans rants notwithstanding, LeBron is taking his talents to Lake Erie.  People who know more than I do can comment, but am I correct in understanding that the Cavs can offer a better supporting cast than the Heat at this point?

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  • Barry Freed

    Crank omic sans rants or no crank comic sans rants…

    Are you ok?

    • Scott Lemieux

      I think the question is better directed at people who waste scarcely a second to note obvious typos.

      • Barry Freed

        Hey, I only just happened to refresh the page when you posted that. It’s not like I just sit here all day refreshing LGM. Honest.

        (I really did do a double-take when I saw it so it wasn’t immediately obvious).

    • N__B

      When I was just a newbie here
      I asked the owners
      What shall I be?
      Will I be trolly? Will I be wise?
      And this is what they said to me:
      Crank comic sans rants
      Whatever you type you’ll be
      The edit’s not here for thee
      Crank comic sans rants

      • Hey buddy, I got a crate here on my dock says ‘internets’, with your name on it. When you gonna pick it up? I need the space…

  • It sure was nice of James to give ESPN so much nothing to talk about during a normally dry sports part of the year.

  • This just evens Cleveland’s karma out for being subjected to the Republican National Convention.

    • Scott Lemieux

      Even might be a little strong.

    • Warren Terra

      Cleveland-area Republicans will doubtless draw a connection and take the credit.

      • Stan Gable

        Cleveland-area Republicans

        Both of them?

        • Warren Terra

          I’m willing to be liberal with “area”.

          • gmack

            Yes, as in many rust belt cities, there are plenty of affluent suburbs around Cleveland that have quite a number of Republicans.

            • snarkout

              I have seen no less than three cars in my neighborhood with a “Romney/Ryan” bumper sticker, including one belonging to the parents of a classmate of my daughter. Clearly Cuyahoga County is a tossup in 2016.

              • Stan Gable

                I too am gravely concerned that the GOP could win the election by investing heavily in Cuyahoga county in 2016.

                • Hogan

                  Lawn signs. Lawn signs will do the trick.

                • Stan Gable

                  One BILLION lawn signs paid for with UNLIMITED CORPORATE CASH!!11!

                • Burning River

                  Considering that Cuyahoga County went nearly 70% for the President in 2012, I’d get a little less nervous. Granted, the next Democratic candidate is still going to need serious GOTV efforts. Still, trust that sequestering themselves in the handful of nice downtown hotels and ‘speaking truth’ to poor minorities about how terrible they are is not going to magically flip Cuyahoga County. Or even a significant percentage of it.

                • Fiske


            • Hurling Dervish

              And…Marco Rubio is wrong yet again. On Monday, he twitted:

              Congratulations to Cleveland on being awarded the #GOP2016 convention. But you still aren’t getting @KingJames back!
              2:32 PM – 8 Jul 2014

          • gogiggs

            As a 40 year+ resident of the area, I can assure you that if you drive 30 mins from downtown in any direction (except north, of course) and it’s pretty red.

            • Fake Irishman

              True, though Cleveland is notable for the number of heavily blue suburbs it has — particularly on the East Side (Cleveland Heights, Shaker Heights, Beachwood etc).

            • Hogan

              The north is a rather murky blue, I hear.

            • Steve LaBonne

              Tell me about it. I live in Medina, right near the house of troglodyte Ohio House speaker Bill Batchelder, and am “represented” in the US House by teabagging moron Jim Renacci. And surrounded by idiots who think voting for them is a great idea.

            • Orpho

              Unless you accidentally hit Oberlin. But short of that, pretty damn red with a few blue dogs.

            • Stan Gable

              I can assure you that if you drive 30 mins from downtown any US urban area in any direction (except north, of course)except where you’ll end up in a body of water and it’s pretty red.

              This seems as accurate a statement.

              • Anonymous

                “Urban” suburbs are about 60/40 for Dems now.
                Some research suggests around 800 people/square mile is the threshold were suburbs turn blue.

              • gogiggs

                I’m sure that’s true, but I was limiting my comment to my actual experience.

              • elm

                30 miles outside of downtown Manhattan in about half of all possible directions is central and northern NJ, pretty blue.

                30 miles from Detroit to the North is Oakland County, which is pretty purple and to the West is Ypslanti, which is deep blue. To the east is Canada.

                30 miles from downton Houston, it’s still Houston.

                • LuigiDaMan

                  20 miles south of Cleveland is Akron, home of LeBron and blue as can be.

    • Burning River

      What’s our make-good for the Browns, then?

  • mpowell

    With all the draft picks in the last 4 years, what level of incompetence would Cleveland’s mgmt need for the answer to be ‘no’?

    The only outstanding question is when those guys on rookie contracts come up for resigning and Cleveland is already against the cap, will they extend all of those guys and push over the cap for the few years while James is still the best player in the league or will they get cheap like Oklahoma? If I were James that’s the commitment I would be looking for, but it will be very easy for Cleveland mgmt to renege on any promises.

    • Scott Lemieux

      I believe there’s another Cleveland franchise who can answer that first question…

      • Colin

        [Cleveland Indians fan sighs.]

    • Soliz

      They already extended Kyrie Irving. Dion Waiters, Tristan Thompson, and especially Anthony Bennett are not good enough to worry about the cost of re-signing at this point. None of those guys are even close to as good as any of Russell Westbrook, James Harden, and Serge Ibaka. Andrew Wiggins is not eligible for an extension until the summer of 2017, and the extension does not actually begin until the 2018-19 season, when LeBron will be in his mid-30’s and probably not playing on this contract.

  • Todd

    at this point?”

    I believe Miami would have had the better team for the next year or maybe two if James went back to South Beach. But I definitely think the Cavs offer the better basketball roster for next 2-5 years. The Eastern Conf. should be absolutely wide open next year, assuming the Bulls get some other nice piece and the Wizards re-sign Ariza. Maybe as many as 6-7 teams with a realistic shot at coming out of the conference.

    • Loud Liberal

      South Beach is not in Miami.

      • Simeon

        South Beach proper is literally across one bridge from American Airlines Arena.

  • Soliz

    Cleveland may have some other moves lined up, but their initial roster makes little sense. They have no shooters and no big men with offensive skills. Their top three wing players are all best when they have the ball in their hands. Their bench is thin. I assume Ray Allen will sign with them for the veterans minimum, but he can only do so much at this point.

    Mostly, I think LeBron is crazy to trust comic sans crank, a rookie GM, and a rookie coach who has never worked a day in the NBA to figure things out. Dan Gilbert is pretty much Dan Snyder when it comes to meddling and decision-making. The Heat have one of the best leadership groups in the league. Micky Arison, Pat Riley and Erik Spoelstra are probably second only to the Spurs. I am no Heat fan but I would much rather entrust the remainder of my prime to those three than to that nutcase in Cleveland and a coach who was coaching in Tel Aviv last season. Maybe Dave Blatt is the Chip Kelly of the NBA, but if I were the best player in the world I wouldn’t stake the next 3 or 4 seasons of my career on it.

    • jeer9

      Pat Riley and Erik Spoelstra are probably second only to the Spurs.

      Riley, as much as I dislike him, has some coaching and GM ability.

      Spoelstra is the KC Jones of the current era.

      • Soliz

        I think Spoelstra did a very good job developing a system to suit a pretty strange roster, offensively and especially defensively. They didn’t win just by rolling the ball out there with overwhelming talent, they tried that the first season and it didn’t work. Winning two championships with no real point guard and journeymen like the Birdman at center is not easy, even with LeBron.

        To be clear, I wouldn’t rank Spoelstra himself second as a coach, I would take Doc Rivers and probably a couple other guys over him, but he’s a good coach.

        • Denverite

          I think that you could make an OK argument that they won because of defense, which was possible in the largest part because they could just have James shut down whomever the best player on the other team was.

          (Seriously, in the history of the NBA, who couldn’t James guard? I can think of Chamberlain, Abdul-Jabbar, peak Shaq. Maybe Olajuwon in his prime, but even then, I suspect James might push him around. But unless you’re a big and talented seven footer, I’d take my chances with James.)

          • Uncle Ebeneezer

            How do you think he’d stack up against Magic or Barkley in their primes? Both had the size that would make it tough for James (or anyone else) to push them around. And Magic had the ball handling and quickness.

            • Denverite

              Barkley would be embarrassed. James has three or four inches on him, and while they weigh about the same, James is much stronger.

              Magic is a good question. I think it depends on whether you’re talking early career Magic without the long range shot or mid career Magic with it. If James could give him a couple of feet outside of the arch, I think he could control him. Maybe.

              • howard

                in my estimation, the greatest man defender in nba history was dennis rodman (bill russell was the greatest team defender), and lebron is pretty close to rodman.

                and rodman absolutely was able to defend barkley; i’m not sure i remember him ever matching up with earvin.

                p.s. i was at the boston gahden (not a typo!) the night in barkley’s first or second season when kevin mchale shut him out from the floor: barkley hadn’t really developed his jump shot yet and mchale would just stay planted when barkley upfaked and stick his long arms out and barkley didn’t know what to do.

                a couple of years ago, i was at a hotel (there’s a longer story here i’ll skip) where it turned out that sir charles was at the bar. as he started to work the room he came over to me and i said, while i was shaking his hand, do you mind if i tell you a boston celtic story?

                no problem, he says.

                and i related what i just typed and not only did barkley not throw me through the window, he said “kevin mchale: great dude. really great dude. i don’t have a single bad thing to say about him.”

                • Jamie

                  Barkley is the best.

                • Keaaukane

                  I’ll never forgive McGhoul’s clotheslining the games greatest player, Kurt Rambis.

                • Turkle

                  Great story!

                • Uncle Ebeneezer

                  Great story.

                  I was also going to mention McHale as a potential matchup problem for James. The guy just had those freakishly long arms and such great post moves that when his shooting touch was there he was very difficult to guard. James’ hand quickness would be great for stripping or stealing the ball, but once McHale got the ball above his chest I could see James swatting at a lot of fall-aways, or falling for fakes allowing McHale to duck-under and go up for a shot or get fouled.

                • Cheap Wino

                  Barkley is always saying McHale was his most difficult matchup in his career. Always hugely complimentary about him as a player.

              • Charrua

                I don’t know, Barkley was smaller than most of his defenders during his prime too. If he could score 40 pts against Pippen/Grant, maybe he would have done well against James too.

                • howard

                  i think we have to understand what it means to defend a superior offensive player effectively.

                  russell never shut out wilt (in fact, if iirc, wilt averaged north of 30 against russ).

                  what he did do was make wilt work for the points, and he did it one-on-one so that his teammates could focus on the other 4 guys on the floor without peaking over at wilt as well.

                  a truly great offensive player will get his points other than on a fluke night, but if you make him work for those points extra hard, in single coverage, you’re doing a great job.

                • howard

                  i take it back: i looked it up and wilt averaged 23 against russ, with 26 30+ point games (out of 87 total games).

                  in terms of making him work, wilt’s career shooting percentage, regular season, was .540; playoffs .522.

                  against russ, his regular season shooting percentage was .436; postseason .461.

              • mark f

                I don’t know, man. LeBron would beat him and is the better player. I agree there. But embarrassed? People forget that Barkley was some ungodly combination of Magic Johnson and Blake Griffin, except he was relatively short. If he had their size, or even just two more inches, he’d probably have been a top 5 all-time player. As it is he’s arguably top 20.

              • Uncle Ebeneezer

                The other issue is that it always seemed like it was better to have Magic score 30 points on you than to have him rack up assists, steals and rebounds.

          • Srsly Dad Y

            Somehow Dave Cowens guarded All-Star Kareem in the ’74 finals, so who knows.

            • howard

              Cowens burned himiself out early due to his intensity, but he played about six inches taller than he was: those matchups with kareem were incredible to watch.

              • Medrawt

                Also – and I’m going purely off of Youtube and reportage, since I wasn’t there – being tall didn’t really help you against the skyhook; being able to push Kareem further out could. So against that specific weapon in Kareem’s arsenal, it seems like height wasn’t important so much as strength and leverage.

                • excellent (and accurate) point about the skyhook: possession after possession, the question was whether kareem would get to his spot or be pushed out a couple feet further.

                  but the height did matter when it came to rebounding (although i always felt that kareem, like shaq, could have been a better rebounder) and other shots.

                  my general recollection (and i just took a quick look and i can confirm the scoring but not the rebounding) is that kareem would outscore cowens, but cowens would outrebound kareem.

                • Anonymous

                  Kareem average 15/game in six seasons in Milwaukee and led the league in rebounds his first season in LA. He was a great rebounder until he hit 30.

                • the most sensitive indicator of rebounding prowess is a stat that you can find at basketball reference.com, in which each player’s rebounds are reported as a percentage of total rebounds while the player was on the floor.

                  kareem’s numbers are fine, but nothing special: they aren’t quite as good, for example, to pick a couple of guys whose career overlapped quite well, as those of nate thurmond or bob lanier.

                  and they pale in comparison to rodman’s.

                  which is why i say that kareem could have been a better rebounder, even before he turned 30….

          • Charrua

            On the other hand, the energy spent chasing Tony Parker around was energy not spend scoring, right?
            Maybe a roster where he wasn’t needed to guard the opposition best player night in, night out would have worked better in the long run.

          • njorl

            The guy you would never want him guarding is Reggie Miller. He played without the ball, far from the basket and never stopped moving, running off one pick after another.

        • mpowell

          I agree with your assessment.

      • Loud Liberal

        KC Jones knew when to let them play.

    • Downpuppy

      It’s called “Let’s imitate the Spurs”. Blatt & the international players they picked up in the salary dump, plus a center, and they’re good to go.

      If Blatt doesn’t work out, they can bring in KC Jones & let LeBron run the team.

  • Srsly Dad Y

    I’ll leave the supporting-cast analysis and predictions to others, but I have to say I respect James’s thinking as a grownup. Here’s a guy who once could legitimately envision himself in the NBA winners’ pantheon alongside Michael Jordan and Bill Russell. Well, now he’s 30 and he knows he’s not going to be those guys. He’s 2-3 in the finals, so he’s measuring himself against the next level of Wilt, Magic, Larry Bird, Oscar Robertson (as a player), Tim Duncan, who have you. But he can do something none of them ever did–and no star of major team sports has ever done AFAIK–move home and bring a championship there. If he pulls it off just once, he’s the special one, he’s got his own asterisk in the books. Nice goal. Well played.

    • Denverite

      Well, now he’s 30 and he knows he’s not going to be those guys.

      By the time Michael Jordan was 30, he had been in three finals and won all three. James at the same point has been in five finals and won two. It’s a tough call, but I think I’d rather have James’s resume at the same point in their careers.

      I’ve said this before, but if push really comes to shove and I’m starting a team from scratch, I think I pick James over Jordan. Jordan’s better for sure, but the sheer flexibility James can give you (he can play every position on the floor unless the other team has a dominant five) is really, really valuable.

      • Srsly Dad Y

        James will end up the “greatest all-around player,” but he’ll always be Not Michael Jordan because of MJ’s threepeats. James is not going to win three in a row, and probably not two in a row. Look, Russell’s career was better than Jordan’s and Wilt and Duncan arguably revolutionized their positions more, but they’re Not Michael Jordan Either.

        • Srsly Dad Y

          I mean two in a row again.

        • Denverite

          The one thing strongly in Jordan’s favor is that he was brutalized pretty much his whole career. If he was playing with today’s rules, he’d average in the mid 40s if he wanted to.

          • howard

            that’s entirely possible.

            on the other hand, while michael took a lot of physical punishment, he also got every single ambiguous call whistled in his favor.

            • Srsly Dad Y

              And James’s go-to move from the elbow is to lift his pivot foot and travel, let’s not start down that road.

              • howard

                why not?

                seriously, jordan and james would be unbelievably great players if the refs treated them like minimum salary rookies.

                so why should we not note that the refs don’t do that?

                • Srsly Dad Y

                  I retract my road recommendation.

          • Srsly Dad Y

            But he never brought a title to North Carolina!

            • Srsly Dad Y

              erm, NBA title

          • mpowell

            No, it’s impossible to average mid 40s in today’s NBA. The zone being legal and resulting rotating man defenses make extra defensive attention much easier to give on help and team’s will take away any option producing at that kind of rate.

            • howard

              while i respect your underlying point, mpowell, i’m not sure i agree.

              for evidence, i point to the ’86 bulls-celtics playoff where michael was the only offensive threat the bulls had (ok, maybe orlando woolridge), against one of the greatest teams in nba history, a team with a strong defensive orientation, and he scored 49 and 63 (i was at the 49 game).

              it would take a situation where the teammates were that mediocre and where the star was young and full of energy, and it would take a situation where the team had limited expectations and so was happy to feed the star, but i think a young michael taking 30 shots a game could average in the mid-40s.

              • Charrua

                You can’t average 40+ a night in today NBA (or in 1995 NBA or in 1985 NBA) for a very simple reason; the pace is too slow. Jordan did average basically 30 shots a game in 86/87 (almost 28 FGA + shots he was fouled on) and still had “only” 37 pts. a game…in a team that was dead last in pace in the league and still had 4 more possesions a game than the Heat had last year.

              • mpowell

                There’s a difference between two games and talking about season long averages. Players still have games where they score lots of points. Jordan had plenty of seasons where he averaged in the mid 30s. That rate would not be higher if he were playing today.

                • that word “would:” i don’t think it means what you think it does.

                  what you’re saying is “assuming that 23-year-old michael jordan’s team made no special efforts to feed him the ball or force the pace, then jordan wouldn’t be able to score 40 points a game.”

                  which is true, but isn’t the same as saying he simply couldn’t. over his complete career, he averaged 1.31 points per shot, and the odds are more fouls would be called today.

                  now, do i think those circumstances would arise today? almost certainly not, but that doesn’t mean i think there’s a basis for saying they couldn’t possibly arise.

        • Charrua

          I would pick Jordan over James not so much for production (James has a slight advantage there) but because positionally Jordan was easier to work with.
          James versatility means that he’s sort of playing out of position a lot of the time, and coaches don’t always know how to complement him.
          There’s value in a guy who can give you almost as much production AND you already know where to put him and how to use him.

        • Cheap Wino

          Eh, I feel Jordan gets just a little too much credit for his three-peats. His supporting cast was better than anything LeBron has played with, especially the second three — that team was a serious championship contender without Jordan, with him they won 72 games, etc.

          Pippen, Rodman, Kukoc, Ron Harper, Steve Kerr, the three-headed center monster, just a phenomenal lineup. LeBron has never had that level of teammates.

          • Srsly Dad Y

            Yeah, well Ralph Abernathy deserves a lot of credit for the civil rights movement, too, but MLK is the man. Public images just work that way. My original point was not about what’s right or what either player deserves, but what James understands about his historical legacy with the public — Not Michael Jordan. Maybe Magic+. Think about it, a bronze statue of James outside an arena calling him The Greatest Who Ever Lived would be a bit silly, wouldn’t it? (As for, say, Larry Bird.) But Jordan’s public image can carry it. James is now angling for the top of the second rung, or a rung outside the rankings for the special status he has in Cleveland.

            • Horace

              James can probably live with not going down in history as the greatest player, most degenerate gambler and biggest asshole ever to lace them up.

      • Manju

        I prefer MJ to LBJ.

      • mpowell

        I make this point later, but the defense Jordan went up against was fundamentally different. Jordan was better for his time. If he played today he would have to become a more effective passer and find more ways to help his team score. This is exactly what James had to do to win titles and it also came to him naturally. It’s quite possible Jordan could have done the same, but it doesn’t fit the game he had as well. That game was developed as a consequence of the era he played in though, so I do think it’s possible he would have been similarly effective in this era.

        • Cheap Wino

          This. Jordan’s game would have to be different to be successful in today’s NBA. Not saying he wouldn’t be great by any standard, but dominant on the level he was in the ’90’s is no guarantee. Zone has made defenses difficult to beat.

      • Loud Liberal

        It’s an easy call. MJ won all 6 finals he was in and would have won 8 straight had he not taken 2 years off to atone for gambling . . . I mean, scratch his baseball fetish.

  • MikeJake

    I’m so pumped.

    Don’t forget, a Kevin Love trade is still a possibility. They’d have to give up Wiggins, probably Varejao’s expiring, and draft picks.

    • Kurzleg

      God, I hope that deal goes down. I’d even take Wiggins for Love straight up. Love fills the stat sheet, but I’m not sure he’s someone to build around.

      • mark f

        Agree. Celtics fans had Love-mania a few years back, as if adding Love to their shit roster would make them instant contenders. That’s obviously false — look at the T-Wolves — but he’s also not without problems. With someone like James he’d probably at least cut down his 3PAs by half, which would be a very good thing for him to do.

        • mark f

          Months, not years.

    • Jamie

      A Lebron – Kyrie – Love big three would be VERY interesting from a tactical standpoint. Tons of interesting possibilities, and it sounds like Blatt is the right kind of coach to explore them.

      • Kurzleg

        Like I say below, Blatt’s a very intriguing piece to this puzzle. He has a good reputation with players he’s coached and has had success outside the US. I was disappointed that MN didn’t pursue him.

  • liberalrob

    Interesting move. I wonder if he’ll be welcomed back with open arms? The Prodigal Son returns…

    So much for the not 3, not 4, not 5, not 6, not 7, not 8 Championships he was going to get with Wade and Bosh, I guess.

    • Srsly Dad Y

      It’s cool how “James talks” at the link about forgiving the owner because he’s made mistakes himself.

      • Missouri Buckeye

        Sadly, I had an uncle who was a huge Cleveland sports fan just pass away about a month ago. He was barely old enough to remember the 1964 Browns. Its a shame he didn’t live to see this.

        Though I actually think this is just God taunting us.

        • Denverite

          I knew (well, knew of, we met a handful of times) a guy who was born on the south side of Chicago who was born in December 1917 (a few months after the White Sox won the WS) who died the day after Game 2 of the 2005 WS. Poor guy.

    • Burning River

      The local news around here has been full up on stories of folks-regular people, local restauranteurs, etc., throwing themselves at the feet of the thought of LeBron coming back to Cleveland.

      Even the cynics, the first time they see a back door lob from Irving to James-they’ll come around.

  • Kurzleg

    The real wild card here is that Gilbert hired Dave Blatt as head coach. Blatt has had tons of success European leagues and even helped Russia to a medal in the London Olympics. He seems like a potentially brilliant hiring who might be able to get more out of less than your typical NBA coach. At the very least, LJ wasn’t put off by his hiring.

  • howard

    James and irving are an excellent base for a chsmpionship team; whether they’ll fill the roster and coach well enough to build on that base I can’t say.

  • Anonymous

    God isn’t a woman. stop trying to project your tranny perversion on God.

    • Missouri Buckeye

      The derp is strong in this one.

    • Okay, apparently Pancakes are going back to Cleveland

    • jim, some guy in iowa

      why couldn’t god be a woman?

      • MAJeff

        In got there is no male or female, but you better believe he’s hung!

    • A Different Fake Anonymous

      Speak truth to power and smother it with naturally flavored strawberry syrup brother, America is freeing itself from the chains of the Assistant/Associate Professor power structure as we speak!

      • Kurzleg

        smother it with naturally flavored strawberry syrup

        Or you’ll be knee deep in the socialist nightmare of pure maple syrup in no time!

    • MAJeff
    • As a noncorporeal being, God is mostly likely genderless and asexual. God does not have a penis, and he’s never managed to have sex.

      • Jesus, on the other hand, was at least bi, if not entirely gay.

        • MAJeff

          And a cannibalism bottom.

    • Jesus

      This is Jesus, Kent. And you’ve been a very naughty boy. I am too a woman. I want you to think about what you’ve done, Kent. And from now on, stop playing with yourself.

      • El Guapo

        +1,000 Val Kilmers

    • Dishwalla

      Tell me all your thoughts on God.

      • Joan Osborne

        Hey, what if God… nah, forget it. That’s a dumb idea.

  • Missouri Buckeye

    I see this as just another instance of God as Lucy with the football and Cleveland as Charlie Brown.

    I see Game 7, against OKC, Cavs up by 1, OKC with last possession. Westbrook fakes to Durant, puts up a jumper (Cavs defense rushes to block), shot misses, and un-blocked-out Durant gets the rebound and dunks it. OKC wins the championship.

    This play will become known as “The Putback.”

    Yes, I did grow up in Akron. Why do you ask?

    • LosGatosCA

      Dereck Whittenberg already owns the copyright on that ending.

      You’ll have to come up with something else.

  • Karate Bearfighter

    Miami mortgaged its future to get Shaq and a championship. Despite having done so, they managed to put together a new, almost completely different championship-caliber team 5 years later. Cleveland’s roster has more potential, but I’d much rather bet on Pat Riley’s ability to rebuild the Heat than the Cavs ability to judge talent.

    • Soliz

      Exactly. The Cavs couldn’t build a contender with LeBron the first time. Since he left they have had 5 lottery picks. They hit on Kyrie Irving, missed on three, and the jury is out on Wiggins (who I like a lot but is not a good fit with Irving and LeBron).

      • Jamie

        I actually think Wigging could be a very good fit. I’m guessing your scepticism is because Wiggins isn’t a knockdown shooter yet. That’s fair, although I think he’s a passable catch-and-shoot guy, enough that you have to guard him on the perimeter at least.

        His defence and athleticism make him a good fit, imo, though. For one, he can probably split some of the tougher assignments on D with Lebron right away, allowing Lebron to rest a little. And the possibility of a Kyrie + Lebron + Wiggins fast break is pretty damn enticing.

        Basically, I don’t think Wiggins needs the ball in his hands to make an impact as a rookie.

      • gogiggs

        Tristan Thompson averages just under a double-double and Dion Waiters averaged 16 points a game coming off the bench.
        I guess you and I have a different idea of what a miss is.

        • Soliz

          If they were selected in the late teens they would both be fine picks. They weren’t. These are top 5 picks.

          “just under a double-double” sounds a lot better than 11.7 points and 9.2 rebounds per game. Those are fringe starter numbers, especially for a power forward who doesn’t protect the rim (0.4 blocks per game last year). He was the 4th overall pick and was selected ahead of Klay Thompson and Kawhi Leonard, among others. That’s a miss.

          Dion Waiters scored 16 points a game “off the bench” while playing 29.2 minutes per game. He shot 43.3% overall, 36.8% on threes, and 68.5% on free throws. The three point shooting number is solid, but much higher than his rookie year. The other two percentages are pretty bad. Also, he offers essentially nothing beyond scoring: he’s not a good defender, he had less than 3 rebounds per game, and has 3 assists per game to 2.2 turnovers per game. He was also picked 4th overall, selected ahead of Damian Lillard and Andre Drummond, among others. That’s a miss.

          Seriously, how do you think the Cavs managed to badly miss the playoffs in an awful conference with these excellent young players on their team?

          • gogiggs

            Don’t put words in my mouth. I didn’t say they were excellent.
            They’re legitimate NBA players, though. Considering how many people drafted in the lottery never even become that, I don’t consider them misses.
            As far as Waiters being selected ahead of Damian Lillard, Lillard is a point guard and the Cavs already had Irving. As far as the Drummond and Leonard and Thompson picks, you can cherry pick every draft that way for almost every team. Acting like the Cavs are especially bad at drafting on the basis of those picks is disingenuous at best.

  • Lemieux:
    How can you not point out Marco Rubio’s tweet from 2 days ago?

    Congratulations to Cleveland on being awarded the #GOP2016 convention. But you still aren't getting @KingJames back!— Marco Rubio (@marcorubio) July 8, 2014

  • The Amazing Spider-Man

    Great Nate Silver piece about where Lebron should have gone:


    Basically, not much difference between Cleavland and Miami. But if he wanted championships, he should have gone to the Clippers.

    • howard

      i notice he just has a magic asterisk as to how the clippers were going to fit lebron into the cap (which, for the record, i hate).

      • Richard

        The problem with him going to the Clippers is that the Clips would have had to dump D’Andre Jordan and Jamal Crawford for nothing in return to get under the cap. That basically would have left them with CP3, Griffin, LeBron and Reddick and a bench not good enough to get them the championship.

    • gogiggs

      I’m not sure what’s so great about it.
      He spent a whole lot of time to say that the Clippers are better than the Cavs and Heat. A quick look at the standings tells you that and in a lot less time.
      Nate Silver is great and all, but I don’t really need him to tell me that 57 is more than 54.

    • Dishwalla

      Even ignoring cap issues, or whatever, this seems to assume that James’s decision was or should have been entirely about where he will win the most championships. Whereas it seems as though he basically limited himself to choosing between Cleveland and Miami because this is not really the most important thing for him at this point.

      • Manny Kant

        Urgh, nym change fail. That was me.

      • Srsly Dad Y

        My view above. Titles aren’t key because he can’t match Jordan’s streaks and he needs to do something different and special. 1 finals run in CLE > 1-2 titles elsewhere.

        • Manny Kant

          He’s already had finals runs in Cleveland. He needs to give them a title. But one title in Cleveland is better than 2 with the Clippers.

          • Srsly Dad Y


      • gogiggs

        To be fair to Silver, the “should” part was in the headline, which he most likely didn’t write.
        The article itself was a straightforward look at which team, that might conceivably sign LeBron, would be likely to win the most games.
        However, the answer to that question was pretty obvious and Silver brought nothing illuminating to the question.
        On the other hand, when the boss says, “write about this”, you write about this, whether you have anything new to say or not.

        • LosGatosCA

          He’s his own boss for editorial choices – as long as the page clicks justify Disney’s investment.

  • AcademicLurker

    Personally, I’m waiting for James’ follow up of “Ha! Just kidding!”

  • Soliz

    Also, I can only imagine the scene at Dwyane Wade’s house right now. He opted out of $41 million over the next two years for this?

    • howard

      that was one of my thoughts too!

    • D.N. Nation

      My guess is that the Heat give Wade a Kobe-esque deal to send him off. They aren’t going to be a winner for the next few years and will have loads of cap room to rebuild. They’ll do Wade right.

      Financially right, that is. The Heat are going to be a trainwreck on the court for a little while.

  • I’m happy that he did this. It was the right thing to do.

    It was also smart, because if he had left Miami and gone anywhere else, he would have gotten killed.

    It would sure be nice if he brings a championship to that city. They haven’t had one in 40 years, now.

    • Jonas

      50 years. Not that I’m counting or anything.

      • D’OH!!!
        You’re right.

        Sheesh, I’m getting old and forgetful.

        Btw – My favorite line about bad teams was about the Chicago Cubs, and it came early in the 21st Century – “Any team can have a bad century.”

        • Captain C

          The last time the Cubs won a World Series, the Ottoman, Austro-Hungarian, Russian and Chinese (nominally) Empires all still existed, Arizona and New Mexico weren’t states, and the NBA was still nearly 40 years in the future.

          • So you’re saying the Cubs drought is Franz Ferdinand’s fault?

            • Hogan

              Is there no end to those Scottish bastards’ treachery?

              • O perfidious Scotia!

          • patrick II

            My Cubs fan cousin asserts their 100 year rebuilding plan is about to pay off.

  • Gwen

    As a Rockets fan, I am panicking over the Chandler Parsons situation.

    Free Agency Fever is starting to look like a bust for Clutch City. Especially if we start the next season with Jeremy Lin (“bless his heart”, as my grandmother would say) but without Parsons.

    But yeah nice to see that the destruction of the Miami Heat has finally been effected. Seriously, screw those guys.

    • Jamie

      It seems like basically a done deal that Houston will clear Asik and Lin, sign Bosh, and match Parsons. Giving you a terrifying starting 5 next year. So chin up!

      • Gwen

        Thanks Jamie. After I posted this I saw the rumor that Bosh.

      • Jordan

        If only :(.

    • Jordan

      Yeah, this has been a terrible 24 hours for the Rockets.

      Looks like: missed on Bosh, Cuban either takes Parsons or makes them spend 15 freaking million dollars a year on him, AND they ship off Lin and Asik for nothing.

      Boo! BOOO!

  • Davis X. Machina

    Re-tweeted by Jonathan Chait:

    “I have a responsibility to lead”: What Barack Obama can learn from LeBron James, by Ron Fournier

  • Duvall

    As always, the lesson to learn here is that whiny rich white guys always get what they want with no consequences.

  • TapirBoy1

    Native Clevelander who doesn’t live there any longer. Wish I still worked downtown today. The place must be going nuts. Hell, I almost felt like crying when I read the letter and I’m not even particularly an NBA fan, much more into NFL and secondarily MLB. Scoring the RNC, bringing back LeBron, and even bringing in the notorious Johnny Football, it feels like some exciting things are happening in the city again.

    It will be interesting to see if the Cavs can score K Love now. Nate Silver says that would be enough to make the men in wine and gold championship contenders next year.

  • C.S.

    Sorry, but I fail to see why this means that God no longer hates Cleveland. Isn’t this actually evidence that God recognized that Cleveland was starting to get resigned to its fate, and starting to make peace with it? Isn’t hope the first step towards the greatest fall? What’s more depressing to Cleveland — being a very good team with Irving and Wiggins that battles valiantly for the Eastern Conference title but never really has a shot at winning it all, or having LeBron valiantly lead this group to the NBA Finals three straight years . . . only to lose to the Spurs, Thunder, Trailblazers, or Clippers in some order?

    • Srsly Dad Y

      You can wish. DC would rename a street Wizards Avenue if they merely lost in the finals three straight years, sheesh.

  • Heliopause

    I would like to thank LGM for affording me the opportunity to make this announcement.

    This is a tough, emotional decision for me, but I’ve decided to leave the girl half my age with whom I’ve been having totally hot sex for the past four years and take my talents back to my first wife.

    • I laughed. And then I realized that there are famous adult starlets who are less than half my age.

      • Hogan
        • Of course, there are famous starlets who are one-quarter my father’s age…

  • Tom Servo

    As someone born and raised in Miami, I’m devastated.

    Actually, until a few years ago, I was only ever interested in college basketball. This was really the only reason I got into the NBA at all. Whatever!

  • LosGatosCA

    Michael Jordan was a great basketball player no doubt. But he carried the ball every time he handled it. Oscar Robertson might have been in the same topmost tier with MJ with the same interpretation of the rules.

    Howard is also completely correct about Rodman. The first championship when Michael retuned from baseball is 100% completely owed to Rodman’s defense against Shaq when they played Orlando.

    Rodman absolutely belonged in the top 50 NBA players of all time for his defense and his offensive rebounding (=additional team possessions) abilities.

    And I have to say that even in street clothes, the guy moved/glided like Secretariat. Pure athletic energy.

    It’s too bad his erratic behavior has overshadowed his skills.

    • losgatosca: great to see another old-timer who can remember oscar! mr. triple double isn’t nearly as well-known today as he should be.

      as for rodman, for fun i sometimes consider who would be my starting 5 if i could have any player in his prime. my current top 3 go like this:

      team 1: russell/garnett/bird/magic/michael

      team 2: wilt/rodman/julius/west/oscar

      team 3: hakeem/duncan/james/nate archibald/walt frazier

      • I’m good with most of that except that I’d put Isiah Thomas ahead of Archibald and I take Duncan/Rodman/Rick Barry over Garnett.

        On Hakeem: Every time I see a World Cup penalty kick shoot out I think of how Hakeem would probably have been the greatest goalie in the history of football, like the Jim Brown legend in lacrosse.

        Obviously his size puts him at a tremendous advantage relative to other goal keepers but the thing that always amazed me was his quickness and footwork. And then when I lived in SE Michigan, Thomas was asked to name the 5 quickest players in the NBA (other than himself or another Piston) and I only remember the first two names on the list:

        1. Jordan
        2. Hakeem

        Pretty amazing.

  • Brien Jackson

    So…how deep into the playoffs will they get before Cleveland fans want Lebron’s head for not scoring 50 a game? I’ll say conference finals.

    • gogiggs

      You seem to have us confused with Philadelphia or New York.

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