Friday, July 9, 2010


The superstar chooses to leave Cleveland to join Dwyane Wade's team in Miami.

The guy has played in multiple all-star games, including winning an MVP in one. He plays small forward but has the ball-handling and passing skills to run the point. He was selected as an All-NBA player and NBA All-Defensive player multiple times. He is regarded as one of the best players ever to play the game. No, not Lebron James; Scottie Pippen.

Pippen was a great player. So great that he was named one of the NBA's 50 greatest players during it's 50 year celebration. He averaged over 16 points, 6 assists, and nearly 5 rebounds per game; basically a triple-nickel every time he touched the floor. But no matter how good he was, he will always be regarded as Robin to Michael Jordan's Batman. With Lebron James' decision to join Dwyane Wade in Miami, he is stepping into a new role: wingman.

Lebron's decision disappointed some and let down others. At the end of the day, James wanted to go to Miami and play with his friends because, let's face it, he has always seemed to care more about having fun than winning. Going to the Heat means he will be joining a team that is already claimed by Dwyane Wade. He is now the sidekick.

The two superstars coexisting will mean that each will have to sacrifice some stats. More than likely, James scoring numbers will curtail as he will be expected to handle the ball. His huge ego should not get in the way because he had a chance to lead a team and could not claim the ultimate prize. If he is able to defer to Wade, especially during crunch time, it could work. Wade is more like Jordan in his style of play and his fourth quarter moments. James has had a few game-clinching plays but he is nowhere near as good in the clutch. That is why he will only be second fiddle on this team. Expect Wade to maintain his scoring numbers while James looks to add more assists and rebounds.

As the 23 jerseys burned in Cleveland it might have allowed James to come out of the shadow of Michael Jordan. His chance at "global icon" status is likely in doubt because he will merely be known as part of a big three. "King James" was always more like Magic Johnson but compared to His Royal Airness. Now, the comparisons can stop as James will try to become the great facilitator.

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