The biggest news in professional basketball is the recent decision of Lebron James to sign with the Miami Heat, along with two of his best friends, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh. Lebron is without doubt one of the best basketball players currently playing the game, although he has yet to win an NBA championship. Until he does, he can't be compared with a Kobe Bryant of the LA Lakers (winner of 5 championships) or to Michael Jordan, former NBA superstar and winner of 6 championships.
James' former team and city, the Cleveland Cavaliers are in mourning. He had carried them to great heights over the last seven seasons, but never brought home a championship. There are various reasons for this, but without doubt, he lacked the caliber of players around him to be a championship team. Not that has hasn't had good teammates – just that they didn't lift their game come finals time, as James usually did.
James has made a decision based on the best potential for him to win championships in the future. He has been criticized severely for his decision, especially by Cavs owner Dan Gilbert, though some are coming to his defense, including the Rev. Jesse Jackson (see James' response to Gilbert here and David Stern's response to everyone). In reality, James fulfilled his obligations to the Cavs. His contract had expired. He considered lucrative offers from six teams, including Cleveland. In the end, he went with the place where he has the most potential to win (even with less money on the table). Nothing wrong with that. However, the way he communicated his decision, going on national TV and seemingly not informing the key stakeholders ahead of time, only added to the controversy.
The Miami Heat will now be a potential powerhouse in the NBA, with three all stars on their team. Of course, they need to build other key role players around them if they are to compete and they will now be the target of every other team, who will be out to beat them.
The 2010-2011 NBA season will be one of the best – can't wait!
P.S. I wonder what Gary Ablett Jr will do at the end of this AFL season? Will he stay in Geelong or head north to the Gold Coast for more money and sunnier skies?