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July 11, 2014 10:58 AM   Subscribe


 


I feel bad for the Miami Heat fan.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 11:02 AM on July 11 [7 favorites]




The Onion right on top of things as usual.
posted by Etrigan at 11:04 AM on July 11 [4 favorites]


The Miami Heat fan can suck it the hell up. Live by the sword, etc...
posted by leotrotsky at 11:04 AM on July 11 [3 favorites]


This dude is like the michael jordan of basketball
posted by Greg Nog at 11:05 AM on July 11 [18 favorites]


ghost writers be ghosting
posted by Another Fine Product From The Nonsense Factory at 11:05 AM on July 11


but I thought for sure he was going to the wolves it was so obvious
posted by COBRA! at 11:05 AM on July 11


Worth pointing out that Dave Zirin called this more than a year ago.
posted by asterix at 11:06 AM on July 11 [3 favorites]


Well I'm reminded of this bit from previously on MetaFilter:
If sports in the twenty-first century primarily function as an entertainment business, then heroic status is linked inextricably to the procurement of a major contract, with winning becoming merely a secondary or instrumental good (since it helps pave the way for such a contract).
That was referring to a player's heroic status but I think we can here see it cutting the other way: Clevelanders are excited not because their team is playing particularly well but because they've (re)claimed a celebrity player. Status and civic pride are linked to a perceived victory on the perceived battleground of business arrangements, not to athletic achievement or teamwork or to honest underdog striving or whatever other Disney-style heartwarming-lesson baloney we tell ourselves pro sports are all about.
posted by Western Infidels at 11:09 AM on July 11 [2 favorites]


LEBRON TO ANNOUNCE DECISION AT UNITED NATIONS

I live in enough of a cave when people talk about this guy I didn't know what sport he played. I knew he didn't play for the New York Rangers, but beyond that I had no clue. Unfortunately, my cave isn't big enough that I could avoid all mention of him.

There was a tweet that went by the other day that said, "I am the Lebron James of deciding where to go to for dinner."
posted by cjorgensen at 11:10 AM on July 11 [1 favorite]


cjorgensen, I have no idea who he is either. But RNC is going to Cleveland in 2016, so maybe it's the new in place?
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 11:11 AM on July 11


Soooo glad I'm a Spurs fan. They were like a mile-wide F-4 tornado through the league this season, leaving a trail of "players-only" meetings, fired coaches & blown-up rosters in their wake. Good times, good times. They also had, post-season, what I called drama-free-agency.
posted by Devils Rancher at 11:11 AM on July 11 [2 favorites]


Specifically, from the "odd places" link in the FPP: A few days ago someone ran firebug on LeBron's website and noticed some new pages used the hex codes of the Cavs colors.

I didn't think it was enough for an FPP, but I thought it was pretty convincing.
posted by Room 641-A at 11:12 AM on July 11 [1 favorite]


The Miami Heat fan can suck it the hell up. Live by the sword, etc...

That is pretty harsh. I hope he or she is not reading this thread.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 11:14 AM on July 11 [9 favorites]


I thought the letter was very touching. I'm a Lakers fan for life, but LeBron is all class.
posted by The Gooch at 11:19 AM on July 11 [1 favorite]


Looks like Kevin Love is heading to Cleveland.

LeBron changed the NBA while still in High School.

This is another throw-down to the players in the league, that at least the elite players can control their own destiny. So now does Carmelo re-sign to years of mediocrity? Is that really where his heart is?

Kevin Love just said his heart is in finding out what a playoff game is like, and he wants bunches of them.
posted by dragonsi55 at 11:19 AM on July 11 [1 favorite]


"Not two [championships], not three, not four, not five, not six, not seven ...” - LeBron James

"I personally guarantee that the Cleveland Cavaliers will win an NBA Championship before the self-titled former 'king' wins one". - Dan Gilbert

Yay! We're both wrong!
posted by Curious Artificer at 11:19 AM on July 11


All of SB nation is just getting hammered right now. EVERYBODY FREAK OUT!
posted by Devils Rancher at 11:23 AM on July 11 [2 favorites]


Clevelanders are excited not because their team is playing particularly well but because they've (re)claimed a celebrity player.

Dismissing Lebron James as a "celebrity player" and saying that it has nothing to do with the Cavaliers' quality in the immediate future is ridiculous. The Cavs lost forty more games after James left, and the Heat (already a pretty damn good team) went from two straight first-round playoff eliminations to four straight Finals.

James is the best player in the NBA today, and it isn't close. Not only that, but he is the best athlete in his particular sport, and I can't think of another person playing today who's as far above everyone else. I don't even like the guy, but you cannot claim that this has nothing to do with athletic achievement.
posted by Etrigan at 11:23 AM on July 11 [8 favorites]


So didn't he talk his fellow stars into opting out if their contracts too? What happened with that?
posted by shothotbot at 11:24 AM on July 11


Ah, well, fuck the Heat forever, so that's OK. And now he'll get mad bank but the Cavs'll never build a real team for him to play with, so that's fine too.
posted by klangklangston at 11:24 AM on July 11



The Miami Heat fan can suck it the hell up. Live by the sword, etc...

That is pretty harsh. I hope he or she is not reading this thread.



Possibly relevant
posted by The Gooch at 11:25 AM on July 11 [2 favorites]


I'm starting to think they should just clear all NBA rosters at the end of each season and choose up sides fresh for the next year.
posted by Rock Steady at 11:26 AM on July 11 [1 favorite]


So didn't he talk his fellow stars into opting out if their contracts too? What happened with that?

Chris Bosh is probably going to the Rockets, and Dwayne Wade is probably going to the ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 11:26 AM on July 11 [5 favorites]


All I know is wall-to-wall coverage of the reaction to this is keeping the Not Top 10 off SportsCenter today and that's making me cranky. I'll continue to only really care about the NBA during the finals as usual.
posted by ob1quixote at 11:26 AM on July 11


The Onion right on top of things as usual.

Also this from a couple days ago: Breaking: LeBron James Leaning Toward Joining Al-Qaeda - "... while he has also considered offers from terrorist organizations such as Boko Haram and the Taliban, he believes heading to Al-Qaeda remains his best opportunity to defeat the West in the immediate future."
posted by Joey Buttafoucault at 11:26 AM on July 11 [6 favorites]


Just like they said when he was a high school phenom, LeBron is nothing if not dutiful in his adherence to the hero cycle.
posted by superfluousm at 11:29 AM on July 11 [1 favorite]


So didn't he talk his fellow stars into opting out if their contracts too? What happened with that?

Chris Bosh is probably going to the Rockets, and Dwayne Wade is probably going to the ¯\_(ツ)_/¯


The joke on my local sports talk radio was "Wade's going to stay with the Heat -- no, he's going to the Lakers -- no, wait, he's injured himself trying to decide."
posted by Etrigan at 11:33 AM on July 11 [1 favorite]


Not only that, but he is the best athlete in his particular sport, and I can't think of another person playing today who's as far above everyone else.

Lionel Messi would like a word with you.

So didn't he talk his fellow stars into opting out if their contracts too?

According to this, it was actually the Heat who asked Wade and Bosh to opt out. (Which makes sense, because they were both due $20 million next season, and that would have put the Heat way way way over the cap.) Really, everyone should read that link to see just how badly the players got screwed by the last CBA renegotiation.
posted by asterix at 11:33 AM on July 11


And now he'll get mad bank

He's basically taking a pay cut to go back to the Cavs, both in terms of the fact that Miami could pay more, since he was a returning player, and if he established residency in Florida his taxes drop significantly.

Sure, he's still making a metric shit ton of money, but less than he could've.
posted by inigo2 at 11:34 AM on July 11 [1 favorite]


"Wade's going to stay with the Heat -- no, he's going to the Lakers -- no, wait, he's injured himself trying to decide."

Well, shit. I guess that means he's coming to the Lakers.
posted by Room 641-A at 11:35 AM on July 11 [1 favorite]


I feel like the only guy in the world who likes LeBron James. I've never understood the magnitude of hate he attracts.
posted by MoonOrb at 11:44 AM on July 11 [2 favorites]


Not only that, but he is the best athlete in his particular sport, and I can't think of another person playing today who's as far above everyone else.

Lionel Messi would like a word with you.


Notice how all of the Messi is impossible charts have Ronaldo on them nipping at Messi's heels? There is no one in that heel-nipping position on Lebron right now.
posted by Etrigan at 11:44 AM on July 11


When I was in high school, our team played LeBron twice during his senior year. The first game was at a large college arena and LeBron's school brought their own refs. He was super classy, but their refs made sure our best players fouled out by the third quarter. It was a massacre. LeBron did a tomahawk dunk and they beat us 70-something to 40-something.

We ended up playing them in the championship. With fair reffing, our team was winning at halftime and lost by a reasonable margin. LeBron was always classy and I always respected him for the way he conducted himself, given that he was certainly destined for superstar status.
posted by glaucon at 11:45 AM on July 11 [6 favorites]


He could really drop some jaws and go sign with Panitinaikos Athens.
posted by ocschwar at 11:45 AM on July 11 [1 favorite]


"I feel like the only guy in the world who likes LeBron James. I've never understood the magnitude of hate he attracts."

He's by far the best basketball player in the world, and I'd like to see him dominate to the extent that he erases Jordan's memory (that guy is an anal polyp), but Miami bought some championships with him and God forbid James ever sees a fair ref on the court.
posted by klangklangston at 11:49 AM on July 11


dominant players over time (xkcd)
posted by shothotbot at 12:00 PM on July 11


He's by far the best basketball player in the world

I have a theory about that - He's definitely at the top of the heap skills-wise, he's smart & quick, (which if you're dim & slow, maybe BB isn't the game for you) but I think he's over-built. His cramping problems & maybe a bit of agility sacrificed for sheer muscle mass -- I wonder if training, lifting & bulking up so hard was really in his best interest. Look at a guy like Leonard who really held his own against LBJ in the Finals -- just a bit thiner & leaner & maybe a tad more nimble.

He lets people get in his head, too. He could mature emotionally & not let it get to him when things aren't going his way. This may sound weird, but he could learn something from Kobe Bryant, here. In his heyday, you did not make Bryant mad. When the chin jutted out & he got pissed, LOOK OUT. James doesn't seem to have that. Maybe he's too nice, or too sure of himself, or something, that he doesn't always handle things well when the wheel turns a bit.

I'm still processing this new Cleveland lineup, though. I think it'll be formidable.
posted by Devils Rancher at 12:04 PM on July 11 [2 favorites]


Can I tell another LeBron story?

Okay, my dad works with a guy in Cleveland who is best friends with an area cop. A few years ago (before The Decision) he pulls over this black SUV late at night for speeding - it's 3:00 am.

He walks up to the car and it's LeBron and his then-girlfriend (now wife). He asks them, "What are you doing out?" "Grocery shopping." And sure enough, in the back, are bags of groceries.

He asked. "Why are you grocery shopping at 3:00 am?"

LeBron told him it was the only time he could go out and do his own shopping without getting mobbed by people.

The cop let them go.
posted by glaucon at 12:05 PM on July 11 [8 favorites]


Notice how all of the Messi is impossible charts have Ronaldo on them nipping at Messi's heels?

I think you should take a look at those charts again, Ronaldo is called out on most of those charts because he is also considered a contender for "best player in the world" but the charts tell a different story.
posted by crashlanding at 12:07 PM on July 11 [1 favorite]


I've enjoyed so much the fact that for the past week ESPN and basketball reporters at large have been scrambling for all the newest scraps and rumors, and grasping at straws constantly. Particularly on twitter, where it felt like every hour there was a new rumor or pundit convincing everyone it was Cleveland or Miami, and the news gets broken by Sports Illustrated in a good old fashion story.
posted by DynamiteToast at 12:10 PM on July 11


Notice how all of the Messi is impossible charts have Ronaldo on them nipping at Messi's heels?

Not all of them. The scoring charts, sure, but Ronaldo doesn't even come close on the passing ones. (Not to mention that he does more defensive work than Ronaldo ever has.) That's why Messi is so amazing; he could stop scoring right now and he'd be... Xavi in his prime.
posted by asterix at 12:10 PM on July 11


Also, Lebron's web developer may have tipped off the news.
posted by DynamiteToast at 12:11 PM on July 11 [1 favorite]


I don't know much about Coach Dave Blatt, except that he was brilliant with offense in Europe, and today he is the happiest coach in the galaxy.

The long game is what happens defensively. When LeBron was with Cleveland, he was the defensive linchpin, literally pushing his teamates to the right spot. His spatial court sense is where his genius shines, more like Magic than Jordan. In Miami he was on the opponents main threat much of the time, but Riley teams pushed mano y mano hard. LeBron's capacity to make his teammates better is still growing, and won't that be a fine thing to see in full bloom.
posted by dragonsi55 at 12:19 PM on July 11 [2 favorites]


His cramping problems & maybe a bit of agility sacrificed for sheer muscle mass -- I wonder if training, lifting & bulking up so hard was really in his best interest.

I kind of feel like that was from Spoelstra running him to death. The first year of those cramps he'd played more than anybody in on the heat. Wait no, it was anybody in their division I think. And anybody in the Eastern Conference. Aaaand anybody in the league.

I was so worried he was going to get a catastrophic Kobe-style injury. Which is how Kobe got his injury as well. The coach is supposed to stop the player in his own best interest when fan-driven ego tells the player to go out there and play.

Only thing Lebron needs to do is develop his jumper into one that he can count on. At the ends of games he should know now that going to the hole is his best weapon. And he shouldn't try to be Kobe or Jordan. That's not his personality. For all his "grunt face" moments, Kobe has ball hogged to his detriment when other players were wide open. For all his clutch moments, watching some of Jordan's games recently, he's taking shots over 3 guys in the second quarter. I mean perhaps that was his team's best chance and they accepted it and rebounded, but as Lebron said, "there are different ways to hunt".

Lebron is a better passer than MJ and Kobe, and that's saying something. He still has a chance to be the greatest to ever play. He's 29. I hope his decision to go back to Cleveland works out well for him.
posted by cashman at 12:34 PM on July 11 [1 favorite]


Also, Lebron's web developer may have tipped off the news.

There was so much more than that. By the point that report came out you had to be Mickey Arison's child to deny that he was going to Cleveland. The Nike event/billboard thing, the plane flights, Gilbert's letter going down - it was a torrent of information. It was already obvious at that point.
posted by cashman at 12:36 PM on July 11 [1 favorite]


Notice how all of the Messi is impossible charts have Ronaldo on them nipping at Messi's heels?

Not all of them. The scoring charts, sure, but Ronaldo doesn't even come close on the passing ones.
...
I think you should take a look at those charts again, Ronaldo is called out on most of those charts because he is also considered a contender for "best player in the world" but the charts tell a different story.


(combining two replies into one, because they're making similar points)

The thing is, Ronaldo is on those charts, and he's far enough ahead of the pack and close enough to Messi that it's worthwhile to point him out. There's a conversation about who the best footballer in the world is, and you can say, "Oh, well, sure, for scoring, but what about passing or defense...."

There is no such conversation in basketball. Anyone who says different is selling something... I mean, is just trying to argue for the sake of an argument. And again, I say this as a person who doesn't even like Lebron James. But I'm willing to admit that he is really fucking good.
posted by Etrigan at 12:37 PM on July 11


One of the things I noticed during the extended agony this week as James dragged out his decision was that it kept other people from making their decisions until they knew where James was going to wind up. It made me realize that the NBA has really screwed up, and I guess it's David Stern's fault. He chose to promote individuals over the teams, and this is the result.
posted by ob1quixote at 12:37 PM on July 11


On the other hand, players are the ones who actually do the work, so them benefiting at the detriment of teams who are owned by racist billionaires maybe isn't such an End of the World type sitch.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 12:40 PM on July 11 [4 favorites]


I kind of feel like that was from Spoelstra running him to death. The first year of those cramps he'd played more than anybody in on the heat. Wait no, it was anybody in their division I think. And anybody in the Eastern Conference. Aaaand anybody in the league.

Check out how far he and Durant are off the chart here. And this is before this year's playoffs, and ignores all the summer play he's put in (Olympics, etc.)
posted by dsfan at 12:44 PM on July 11 [1 favorite]


Kyrie is 22, Kevin Love is 25, and Lebron is 29. These guys could dominate the East for the next 5 years. I hope Love ends up being a part of this.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 1:16 PM on July 11


Etrigan: Dismissing Lebron James as a "celebrity player" and saying that it has nothing to do with the Cavaliers' quality in the immediate future is ridiculous.
I really don't think I did that.

Look, I live in Cleveland. I'm not a sports fan at all - when I see this stuff at all, it's from the outside.

When James left, no one seemed worried or angry about how many games the Cavs would win or lose. It was the loss of a home-grown star that upset everyone.

This sort of thing didn't appeal to pride in the team or to prowess at winning games. It was worship of success itself. It was about celebrating a Cleveland rarity: a winner from Cleveland who had not yet left Cleveland, if that makes any sense to you.

Nobody shouts "The King Has Returned!" because they're excited about watching the Cavs win a game. And nobody's shouting "Go Cavs!" Getting him back is the victory that matters to an awful lot of people. Your paean to James' talent is only underlining my point, as far as I'm concerned. I'm sure he's a wonderful athlete, but the thrill we derive is that this outstanding talent is ours again, as much or more than any thrill derived from the talent itself.
posted by Western Infidels at 1:22 PM on July 11 [2 favorites]


Potomac Avenue: “On the other hand, players are the ones who actually do the work, so them benefiting at the detriment of teams who are owned by racist billionaires maybe isn't such an End of the World type sitch.”
I think it's rather that Stern did what he did for the enrichment of the NBA itself, to the detriment of both the teams and the players that aren't superstars. Either way it's obviously not the end of the world. I just don't think the current situation is all that great for anybody except those at the very top.
posted by ob1quixote at 1:33 PM on July 11


If Wade was still good enough to be the second best player on a championship team does anybody think this would have happened? Anyway good for the Cleveland fans. I hope the Cavaliers owner and GM and coach don't screw this up but that ain't the way to bet.
posted by bukvich at 1:38 PM on July 11 [1 favorite]


“God Loves Cleveland,” Bill Simmons, Grantland, 11 July 2014
posted by ob1quixote at 2:26 PM on July 11 [1 favorite]


What the fuck just happened? I thought, in the days leading up to this year's finals, that the Spurs were FINALLY getting their due. People were talking about how this team, while not flashy, played such good, solid, fundamental ball, TEAM ball, that it was like watching the Celtics back when Bird used to play. That they were ushering in a new era of old-school team play. That these guys, who deliberately take pay cuts to allow the team to afford other guys, these guys, who hail from countries all over the world, who have turned down more money, big-name contracts, super-stardom, were the ones to watch. It was like nostalgia only it was happening right now, and it wasn't bullshit.

But here we are again, creaming ourselves over one goddamned player. Yes, LeBron is good. Maybe he's the best at basketball. He is certainly the best at manipulating the media (remember the hoohah when he announced he was going to Miami?) But I'll take the Spurs over LeBron any day of the week and twice on Sunday.
posted by nushustu at 2:46 PM on July 11 [2 favorites]


What "fucking" happened is that Lebron is a unique, once in a generation talent. This is huge news and frankly the Spurs have nothing to do with this. I can appreciate Lebron's talent while simultaneously appreciating the ferociously heartless efficiency and consistency with which the Spurs play. Just like I could appreciate MJ taking over a game, while loving it when Showtime was happening. I'm about to go play in about a half hour. I will appreciate it if I get hot and start hitting from outside and inside, and be just as happy if most of my good plays consist of me throwing no look passes to guys cutting to the basket. It isn't an either or. It never has been.
posted by cashman at 2:56 PM on July 11 [1 favorite]


Here. This is what I mean. This is like 2.5 minutes long, and it just shows cuckoo playing. These are guys who could make the shot but recognize that somebody else on the team has a better shot, so they give them the ball. How often does LeBron do that?
posted by nushustu at 2:57 PM on July 11 [1 favorite]


Not only that, but he is the best athlete in his particular sport, and I can't think of another person playing today who's as far above everyone else.

Mike Trout?
posted by TheSecretDecoderRing at 3:10 PM on July 11


How often does LeBron do that?

People have a weird tendency to project crap onto LeBron that just isn't there. He's a brilliant ball distributor... Have you watched him play at all?
posted by selfnoise at 4:12 PM on July 11 [2 favorites]


How often does LeBron do that?

Career regular season he ranks 10th in the league in assists per game.
Career playoffs, he ranks 12th in the league in assists per game.

He has 5,790 career regular season assists per game.
He has 1,019 career playoff assists per game.

He ranks first in highest assists in a single season, amongst forwards, averaging 8.5 during the 09-10 season.

He's currently 28th all time in assists period.

So the answer is, very often.
posted by juiceCake at 4:35 PM on July 11 [9 favorites]


Apres LeBron, le deluge.
posted by jamjam at 4:40 PM on July 11


Somebody calling out Lebron for not passing enough is the most Metafilter Is Bad At Sports thing that has ever happened. And I was a Witness.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 4:48 PM on July 11 [23 favorites]


"Mike Trout?"

Not even Mike Trout's mom believes that.
posted by klangklangston at 5:02 PM on July 11 [4 favorites]


Somebody calling out Lebron for not passing enough is the most Metafilter Is Bad At Sports thing that has ever happened.

Well, you'll see the same thing in comments on espn.com or si.com. It's more Random Person On Internet Thinks They're An Expert, if anything.
posted by inigo2 at 5:18 PM on July 11 [1 favorite]


So, Bosh stays in Miami. Interesting for Houston. Also Pau Gasol to the Spurs? Maaaybe? *giggles like schoolgirl*
posted by Devils Rancher at 5:27 PM on July 11 [1 favorite]


PTR on why James made the right decision: (warning Spurs-centric blog)

A foot injury to Al Jefferson enabled the Heat to sweep the Bobcats without ever breaking a sweat and they made it past Brooklyn in five tough games, thanks mostly to awfulness from Kevin Garnett and Deron Williams. Even without home court advantage, they beat the Pacers in six games, completely outclassing them in a Game 6 blowout at home. Everything was going according to plan. A fourth straight trip to the Finals, and only 15 playoff games to get there. Best of all, the aging crew would get plenty of rest before the first game.

And then the Spurs broke the Heat into a million tiny pieces.

San Antonio didn't defeat Miami. They humiliated them. The Spurs set a record for highest team field goal percentage in a Finals series and the biggest margin of victory. They blew the Heat off their home floor in two straight games.

The ironic twist, and one that I can't imagine was lost on LeBron, is that he played MUCH better in this Finals than 2013. I mean, it wasn't even close. When he shot the ball, it was almost an automatic bucket. The problem was A) Nobody else on his team could throw it into the ocean, and more importantly B) The Spurs shot eleventy billion percent.

(...)

James, who turns 30 on December 30, has logged 40,000 NBA minutes already, counting playoffs. He must have cast an envious glare at what Duncan, the grand old veteran, had around him. Not just two Hall-of-Fame teammates in Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker but also a hungry, capable young star in Kawhi Leonard and plenty of young, skilled role players in Danny Green, Patty Mills and Tiago Splitter -- none of whom shrank from the moment. He saw that the Spurs added Boris Diaw in a mid-season acquisition, an example of the owner being willing to spend a little extra for a veteran who's a perfect fit.

The older Duncan got, the better his surrounding cast seemed to get. It was uncanny. All Duncan had to do was score 12 points and scoop up 10 rebounds in 28 minutes and he was praised for being a winner and lauded for his leadership, while James was killing himself to lose by 20 to the Spurs.

posted by Devils Rancher at 5:47 PM on July 11 [2 favorites]


Mike Trout?

It's not at all likely that Trout is as much better than the next-best great baseball players as James is than the next-best great basketball players — but as a contract comparison, it's interesting. Really points up the insanely collusive, owner-friendly arrangement that is the NBA salary cap system and CBA. Trout under team control — before hitting free agency at all! — is already making more money than James at the peak of his career. LeBron James should basically be able to own the Cleveland Cavaliers at this point.
posted by RogerB at 6:36 PM on July 11


TheSecretDecoderRing: Mike Trout?

What If A Baseball Player Were As Dominant As LeBron?
The upshot, though, is that to get to 23 WAR, a player would have to basically be Mike Trout if all his extra base hits turned into home runs, if he traded 70 outs for singles, if he played shortstop as well as possible, and if he stole 50 or so bases a year without ever being caught.
...
By this approach, the baseball equivalent of LeBron James is absolute peak Barry Bonds at the plate with, I don't know, absolute peak Ozzie Smith in the field. And, presumably, this imaginary player is better both at the plate and in the field. And he doesn't miss a single game. So.
posted by tonycpsu at 7:34 PM on July 11 [4 favorites]




June 28? Highly unlikely. Looking at the finals since Lebron came into the league - never got within a business week of the 28th. Last year's finals ended in 5 games on June 15th.

2013 - June 20th (7 games)
2012 - June 21st (5 games)
2011 - June 12th (6 games)
2010 - June 17th (6 games)
2009 - June 14th (5 games)
2008 - June 17th (6 games)
2007 - June 14th (4 games)
2006 - June 20th (6 games)
2005 - June 23rd (7 games)
2004 - June 15th (5 games)
2003 - June 15th (6 games)
posted by cashman at 9:28 PM on July 11


The Fangraphs article's approach seems like more of a contrast between the impact of an elite basketball player vs an elite baseball player, which no one would argue. But if Baseball LeBron were twice as productive as the current #1 in MLB, shouldn't Basketball LeBron be twice as productive as the #2 in the NBA? And how low would you have to go on the NBA totem pole before you got to the equivalent of Trout's 10-WAR talent?

Based on the original premise upthread, wouldn't a better measurement be something like "James vs top 1% of NBA" vs "Trout vs top 1% of MLB"?
posted by TheSecretDecoderRing at 9:52 PM on July 11


If common sense would strike, Melo will sign with the Bulls in a way that doesn't require trading Taj Gibson. Add that to a somehow perfect world where Rose is magically better and back to form, and you've got

PG Rose/Augustin (if he'll take the vet min)
SG Butler/Snell
SF Melo/Shooty McNickname
PF Gibson/Mirotic
C Noah/somebody better than Nazr?

Going small, they could put a lineup of Melo at PF, have the rookie SF, Augustin run the point, Rose play off the ball, and have Noah in the high post. I'd take that roster over anyone in the east.

What probably happens: Melo sees James went for the max, wants the same, stays in New York. Maybe the Bulls get Mirotic and Gasol. Maybe Rose is a solid contributor, but nothing more, and the Bulls end up with the third seed by grit alone, which means another first round exit.

At least Miami is fucked, though I wouldn't be shocked to see Bosh pull off a near MVP season. Given the way his game has expanded as a third wheel, but given that he was the central player on those Raptors teams, I can see him busting his ass, scoring 25 a game, pulling down ten boards, and shooting 40% from three. For the first time, I'm interested in seeing what happens when Miami plays Cleveland.
posted by Ghidorah at 9:59 PM on July 11


Er bosh is on his way to Houston already. Looks like Miamis going to be DWade, Birdman, and a bunch of plugged nickels.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 8:46 AM on July 12


Bosh is signing a max deal with the Heat and just tweeted about HeatNation going on.
posted by MoonOrb at 8:56 AM on July 12


Yeah, Melo is going back to New York. Man, I'm tired of the Bulls being consistently used by free agents to build up bigger deals elsewhere. Wade, Bosh, and James did it in 2010, McGrady did it before them. It looks like we might end up with Gasol five years late, and still no shooting guard.

When/if Rose goes down this year, I'm going to be a very, very unhappy person.
posted by Ghidorah at 10:35 AM on July 12


How did those players use the Bulls to negotiate larger deals elsewhere?
posted by MoonOrb at 10:41 AM on July 12


Sorry, bitter drunk (it's okay, it's nearly 3am here), so I don't have the links and such on hand, but there've been a number of free agents in recent years who've used the times when the bulls have had cap space who made a big show of leaving their team and going to the bulls, only to end up getting the max deal they wanted from their team. That's how we ended up with Boozer and Hamilton in 2010, rather than Wade, Bosh, Johnson, or any of the other free agents from that class. I'm pretty sure Johnson was the most blatant about it, extorting a ridiculous contract out of Atlanta. Third biggest market in the league, but can't get any stars to sign. Except, uh, Pau Gasol, four years too late.
posted by Ghidorah at 10:55 AM on July 12


Somebody calling out Lebron for not passing enough is the most Metafilter Is Bad At Sports thing that has ever happened.

Well, you'll see the same thing in comments on espn.com or si.com. It's more Random Person On Internet Thinks They're An Expert, if anything.


Yeah, okay, I'll admit, I am not the Nate Silver of LeBron. So ignore what I said about him passing the ball. Tell me instead why, instead of talking about his playing, we're talking about LeBron's switching teams. Again. Wake me up when he's able to lead a team to enough titles to rival San Antonio, or the Bulls of the nineties, or the Lakes of the aughts, or the Spurs of now. Strip away the Nike ads, and the jersey sales, and tell me how this isn't LeBron's version of Pepsi Blue.
posted by nushustu at 2:26 PM on July 12


Wake me up when he's able to lead a team to enough titles to rival San Antonio, or the Bulls of the nineties, or the Lakes of the aughts, or the Spurs of now.

That's simple. When, like all those you've mentioned, he is on a deep team with a good coach. That's how he was able to win a couple and contest for at least 3 others. I don't see the issue here.
posted by juiceCake at 2:42 PM on July 12


Wake me up when he's able to lead a team to enough titles to rival San Antonio, or the Bulls of the nineties, or the Lakes of the aughts, or the Spurs of now.

Okay, we'll wake you when he's within one season of winning as many titles as the Spurs in the last decade.

WAKE UP
posted by Etrigan at 3:05 PM on July 12 [4 favorites]


Seriously, he just led his team to the NBA finals four straight years, and it's like "oh what has he done". Really? Really?
posted by cashman at 6:32 PM on July 12 [5 favorites]


"The Fangraphs article's approach seems like more of a contrast between the impact of an elite basketball player vs an elite baseball player, which no one would argue. But if Baseball LeBron were twice as productive as the current #1 in MLB, shouldn't Basketball LeBron be twice as productive as the #2 in the NBA? And how low would you have to go on the NBA totem pole before you got to the equivalent of Trout's 10-WAR talent? "

Yeah, something that actually works against baseball players there is the length of the season. Over 162 games, a lot of the contributions revert to the mean in a way that they don't in shorter season sports, meaning that it's "easier" (more likely) to be a dominant basketball player than a baseball player, which is magnified even further by how small the rosters are in basketball. I mean, if we had a basketball team where each member of the roster contributed an absolutely equal amount, it would be, what, 1/13th of the total value. For baseball, that's 1/25th, almost half as much. And while football has a insanely short season compared to any of the other majors, it has a huge roster.

Tl; dr: Basketball is unlike most other sports because a single player can pretty much carry an entire team, meaning that basketball is more likely to have extremely dominant stars relative to other sports.
posted by klangklangston at 8:07 PM on July 12


nushustu: Wake me up when he's able to lead a team to enough titles to rival San Antonio, or the Bulls of the nineties, or the Lakes of the aughts, or the Spurs of now. Strip away the Nike ads, and the jersey sales, and tell me how this isn't LeBron's version of Pepsi Blue.

Denver Post columnist Mark Kiszla, is that you?
posted by tonycpsu at 8:31 PM on July 12 [2 favorites]


LeBron James and the heartfelt hypocrisy of a displaced Clevelander:
I’m a lifelong Cleveland sports fan, and I’ve spent hundreds or thousands of dollars following the Indians, Cavs, and Browns, but the feelings I had weren’t excitement about a possible championship (I don’t count chickens before they’ve hatched), they were about Cleveland—my town—finding peace, finding success, and bringing home another native son.
posted by Western Infidels at 7:20 PM on July 15


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