Monday, June 4, 2007

Let's Hear it for LeBron James

In case you missed it, Lebron James, playing for the woeful Cleveland Cavaliers (franchise appearances in the finals = 0), became superman, scoring 25 consecutive points through double overtime to get a victory on the road against the favored Detriot Pistons. It was a 48 point performance, one of the greatest ever in the playoffs, and will no doubt garner comparisons with the best Larry Bird, Michael Jordon, or Magic Johnson ever managed (hat tip Dispatches). But really, the greatest story here is the lack of stories. LeBron James has long deserved to be recognized for, well, not being a story. No drug stories, no brutalizing women stories, no obscenity-laden TV embarassments, no prima donna complaints from teammates, etc. This guy was 18 years old and given $90+M. That had disaster written all over it. And all he's done instead is be responsible beyond his years, and oh yeah, played some tremendous basketball. He is gracious in victory and defeat. All this apparently with little to no guidance from home on how to be a decent human being. Let's hope he represents a change in attitude for the NBA away from the swaggering Allen Iversons of the world.

So here's to you LeBron. Keep the high road, and bring Cleveland that title that they haven't had, in any major team sport, since the Browns won the NFL Championship in 1964.

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