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Cavs Fans, Consider Leaving With LeBron

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LeBron James and Rajon Rondo / Getty ImagesI feel entirely terrible for the city of Cleveland. (All native Ohioans share this sympathy gene.) The city's best chance at a championship since Jose Mesa made his delicious homemade meatballs was haughtily squandered after the Cavaliers laid the most sulfurous of eggs in the Eastern Conference semifinals against the Boston Celtics, losing in six games.

This signifies the end of LeBron James' current contract with the Cavs and the advent of — check that, it probably began after Game 5 — laptop-side analysis of where he may sign.

New York? New Jersey? Chicago? Dallas? Greece? Back to Cleveland? Everyone has an opinion, and everyone has their reasons. I'll try to sort out all these hypotheses on a later date (actually, I'd love to compile at least one theory/reason per team down the road) so instead here's a suggestion for all those Cavaliers fans.

You all have a secondary affinity for some of James' teammates, be it Zydrunas Ilgauskas, Mo Williams, Anderson Varejao, Delonte West, or someone else. And that's nice of you to not put all your fandom eggs in one basket, because you knew three years ago that LeBron might be packing up and moving elsewhere down the road.

But have you considered doing the same?

Athletes are always migrating, but even though their unrequited lovers may emigrate, their hearts remain planted within the planks, grass, and ice of their beloved teams. However, when it comes to the Cavaliers, it seems that most Clevelanders really juiced up their intensity for the NBA once the lanky kid from Akron became the cornerstone of their franchise. Maybe you toughed out the Brad Daugherty/Richfield Coliseum days. I applaud you. Keep the faith. Your team may still be able to win it all without LeBron; in fact, one team each year since 2003 has proven that it's feasible.

But if you started rooting for the Cavaliers because you're a big fan of LeBron — there's a lot to love and there's no shame in that — then why not re-sign your allegiances alongside him? There's no shame in that.

If he stays nestled in the Cuyahoga, then all the better. Ignore these paragraphs. But if he treks elsewhere, then congratulations, you get to memorize a slew of new names, numbers, and nuances.

It's a cutthroat maneuver, sure, but would you rather ditch or be ditched? The University of Michigan football slogan "THOSE WHO STAY WILL BE CHAMPIONS" was not coined by Art Modell, Manny Ramirez, Bill Belichick, Charlie Manuel, Chuck Daly, or George Steinbrenner.

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  • Matt, the play for LeBron here in New York is sickening. LeBron is on the cover of all papers, on magazines too, and in TV sports reports. The push to get him to the Knicks is astounding.

    Truthfully, and I say this as a New Yorker, this place can ruin sports stars, even legends. Wouldn’t A-Rod have been happier elsewhere? For that matter, so would Beltran, Santana, Sabathia, and many others.

    Maybe LeBron should just stay in his home state. I think he will be happier (if not wealthier) in the long run.

  • zingzing

    when cleveland booed him at the end of game 5, it sealed his fate. way to go, fans. you coulda given him a round of applause, knowing that this might be the last time you see him in your uniform, and by doing so, giving him a boost of confidence that he could take into game 6 and beyond, but noooo. boo the man who’s very unnaturally struggling. boo the backbone of your team just as he’s making a decision about his future if i were him, i’d give cleveland the finger on the way out. then i’d move to LA just to piss off kobe.

  • LeBron doesn’t want to be more in Kobe’s shadow then he already is, especially if he wins another ring. He will likely head east if anywhere.

    If LeBron stays, I am guessing the coach and a number of players will be gone, but this story about where he’s going got way too much coverage this year. People want winners so I don’t get why the media keeps jamming LeBron down our throats. At this rate, he’s going to be the next Dominique not the next Jordan

  • zingzing

    heh. it was tongue in cheek. LA is the last place he needs to go. the clippers suck and LA doesn’t need him. but i don’t like kobe. smarmy fuck. so it would please me, but lebron hasn’t asked me.

    i’d like to see him in new york. but those tickets are already too expensive. professional sports here are a drag that way. i’ve gone to a few mets games, but the yankees, knicks, rangers… forget it. even the mls team’s tickets are outrageous (although i only looked when they were playing LA/beckham…) if the knicks actually have a good team, prices will go through the roof.

    he should go play for charlotte. michael jordan owns, and that’s where i’m from, so at least i’ve got a reason to root for them (not that lebron is asking me about that either).

  • Can’t wait for the sequel: “LeBron James and the Dismantling of the Cleveland Cavaliers”

    When does Miami come to Cleveland next season? Those won’t be vuvuzelas but people booing the entire time

  • al

    im sad lebron u quit and go to Chicago bulls
    or phoenix suns otherwise u suck i hope u go 0-82 i aint no fan of cavs but i wanted u to go to bulls u aint going anywhere with heat
    u going cause of the money thats just selfish i hope bulls crush u