Monday, July 14, 2014

Ten Things To Be Thankful For From the LeBron James Media Frenzy

  1. Endless mockery of the post-Decision letter Cavs owner Dan Gilbert put up on the team's website and which only got taken down during the wooing of LeBron. It's not the mockery that's so delicious, it's the fact that with all the insanity on display in that letter, the internet chose to focus on the fact that it was in Comic Sans. 
  2. The media frenzy around LeBron James temporarily shut down the media frenzy around Johnny Manziel. To be spared endless moralizing by middle-aged men about what a fabulously rich 22 year old should be doing on his summer vacation is, in a word, priceless.
  3. The focus on James meant that we were spared endless attempts by reporters to fill air time and column inches about where exactly Matt Bonner might sign and what deep significance it might hold if he changed teams.
  4. Everyone talking about James meant a blessed respite from Americans pretending to know what they're talking about and discussing soccer. 
  5. Attempts to find new angles on human interest stories on Cleveland meant plenty of references to Major League, The Drew Carey Show, and the fact that Rush finally got inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. OK, maybe not so much that last one.
  6. An end to speculation that this year's #1 overall pick, Andrew Wiggins, will turn out like last year's #1 overall pick, Anthony Bennett, whose field goal percentage last year was roughly equivalent to Troy Tulowitzki's batting average this year. The odds of that happening were very, very slight, but you've got to give the pundits credit for trying.
  7. The birth of a whole new NBA conspiracy theory, namely, that the draft lottery was rigged in order to help lure LeBron back to Cleveland. I'm not sure why anyone thought this would work. Last year, the Cavs had the #1 overall pick and drafted the aforementioned Mr. Bennett; there was always the chance that they'd get the #1 overall pick this year and go for the second coming of Chuck Nevitt. 
  8. The enjoyable sight of media narratives being re-written before our eyes, as sports talk jocks discovered to their surprise that people liked the idea of LeBron going to Cleveland. Many of them nearly sprained unmentionable things trying to throw their engines suddenly into reverse. It was like watching the scene in A Fish Called Wanda where Otto tries to apologize, only with slightly less coherence and command of the English language.
  9. The increasing desperation in the eyes of the people paid to report on the NBA as they waited for LeBron to make his, err, decision. There's only so much you can do about the Josh McRoberts signing before you go back into LeBron orbit, where the man's radio silence meant that the rumor mill nearly chewed out its own entrails for want of something to seize on. Best in show goes to ESPN's premiere Jonah Hill impersonator Brian Windhorst, whose impassioned pronouncement on Olbermann that he was actively not going to report as a matter of principle was a master class in the sheer insanity the situation drove otherwise motor-mouthed NBA "insiders" to.
  10. More proof it's still not worth listening to Chris Broussard.

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