Most of you have probably heard of Toronto mayor Rob Ford by now. If you haven’t, don’t worry, the NBA’s reigning MVP and Finals MVP, LeBron James, hasn’t either. After it was explained to James the Toronto mayor had recently admitted to smoking crack, LeBron wanted to know whether he was still a good mayor.
The Heat visited Toronto last night and won 104-95 behind another monstrous performance from LeBron James. His 35 points, eight rebounds and eight assists led the Heat to the win, but before the game someone had asked ‘Bron about the saga of Rob Ford. Protected by the superstar bubble he inhabits, James hadn’t heard the name until a reporter mentioned it.
Enter, the National Post’s excellent sportswriter, Bruce Arthur. Arthur explained the Ford scandal to James, after which James simply uttered, “unbelievable.” But following Arthur’s synopsis, and a few surprised reactions from James, the NBA’s 4-time MVP had an open-ended question no one in the reporting pool could answer.
The Toronto Star has the details:
“But,” James said, “is he a good mayor?”
Stunned silence. Frozen smiles.
We’re from here. Each of us knows what we think (and probably vastly overestimate how well we know what everyone else thinks).
But it didn’t seem right to impose a value judgment on someone coming at this fresh. Nobody said anything for a while.
Feebly, someone suggested again that he Google it and decide for himself.
“OK,” James said, turning fully around and giving the appraising room-wide look that is athletic code for “go away now.” “I’ll see what happens with that.”
Despite being ignorant of Toronto’s disreputable â€” current â€” mayor, James still knows how to play basketball pretty well. Despite getting posterized, he was his usual spectacular self during the Heat win and hit double-digit points for his 500th consecutive game:
Not only that, but Arthur’s piece on LeBron is excellent, and begins with an anecdote we just have to share:
There’s a cameraman who has been filming NBA games on the baseline in Toronto for years, and somewhere in all those endless games he noticed something about LeBron James. When he came down court, his eyes were wide open and they ricocheted like pinballs, darting back and forth, decoding. “It’s like his eyes were running,” the cameraman says. “I never noticed it with anybody else. Just him.”
LeBron’s eyes “ricocheted like pinballs, darting back and forth, decoding.” That’s a really good way to explain ‘Bron’s vision and understanding of a game more complex than most casual fans realize.
Though maybe he should avoid dancing with the ball at the end of road wins.
What do you think of James’ reaction to the Rob Ford impropriety?
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