2. LeBron’s Poor “Decision”
In terms of the most notable and talked about sports event of the year, LeBron’s “Decision” to take his talents to South Beach probably takes the cake. The ESPN exclusive special about the self-anointed King’s free agent destiny was possibly the most arrogant sports moment in history – at least in television history. Sure, LeBron and his handlers threw a veil of charity over the show – $6 million was raised through sponsorships and given to the Boys and Girls Club, so he and Maverick Carter deserve credit for that – but the people of Cleveland didn’t deserve to be teased like that. From a humanity perspective, it was just flat out mean. But from a business perspective, it was what it was called – a decision.
LeBron had every right to leave however he wanted and play for any team of his choice. It just sucked that he chose the TV show angle as if Cleveland fans would collectively say, “Haha, we almost had him! Good luck, buddy!” As the 2010-11 NBA season has progressed, LeBron has been booed louder than any player and his legacy has forever been tarnished. But he’s also realized that he’s now the villain, and the scary thing is that he’s accepted it and he’s punishing teams and those booing fans. That is, until he completely quits in the playoffs again.
(Side note – I’m giving Stephen A. Smith the 2010 With Leather Award For Journalistic Something Something for being the only “reporter” to actually predict where LeBron, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh would land, despite initially guaranteeing the New York Knicks and later the Chicago Bulls. I originally called him out, and while he really did just throw poop at a wall to see what stuck, he got it right. So kudos and Cheetos to Screamin’ A. Smith.)