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July 6, 2010
By: Evan J. Thomas
It began over 2 months ago; actually this mess began 2+ years ago…
If you occasionally strolled the ESPN.com website you may have seen it, ESPN even had it showcased on their daily telecasts. I am talking about the comical “LeBron Watch” countdown to free agency 2010 running clock.
July 1, 2010 arrived last week with so much speculation on the NBA Free Agency period and to where LeBron James, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh may end up for the rest of their careers that we heard every possible scenario linking these three All Stars. Have we ever in our lives seen so much news coverage on free agency in any sport?
This free agency period has become a massive sideshow for the NBA. ESPN might as well put a reporter in the bathroom to see what LeBron just ate for lunch and report on that. We have camera’s following James car out of every meeting with potential teams, we have fans flocked around the parking garages for a glimpse of James with signs promoting their favorite team.
I am thinking “King” James missed out on a great marketing ploy here, which I will get to shortly.
And by the way, how did James get the nickname “King” when he has yet to win an NBA Championships? The answer to that is ESPN and the media. ESPN is always looking for the “Next Big Thing”. I mean look at The Washington Nationals rookie pitcher Steven Strasburg. ESPN was ready to name him to the NL All Star Team after 6 starts! Let the poor kid get used to the Major Leagues first. Thanks to NL All Star Manager Charlie Manuel for making that clear.
This is what Lebron and his agents missed out on. If they were smart they would have put together a Reality TV show documenting LeBron’s trek into free agency and his daily life, what he eats for breakfast, his family, his workouts, team and business meetings, you know the usual “Reality TV” show scenarios. Seriously ESPN should have come up with that idea long ago. Come on, even Terrell Owens had his own show during the off-season so why not LeBron? It would have worked since James is more of a likeable personality than TO.
Since that idea never materialized we are back to the Free Agency period. Lebron, D-Wade and Bosh will all be making life decisions in the next few days or possibly weeks. They could all potentially land with the same team though it is far fetched that will happen. Its also very possible that all 3 players will find new homes but the most likely scenario will be LeBron staying put in Cleveland, Wade staying with Miami and Bosh joining Wade making a solid tandem with the Heat.