LeBron James is heading back to Cleveland, Ohio to play for his hometown Cavaliers, and unlike his decision four years ago, this time he is being applauded by many (unless you live in Miami) instead of being ridiculed left and right. And for good reason too. The King is going back to try to bring his championship deprived city that trophy that they have so long deserved. Who couldn’t cheer for a guy with those intentions?
The first-person letter he wrote with Lee Jenkins from SI.com was nothing short of brilliant. The article gave off a much more personal connection than “The Decision” did when James announced he was taking his talents to South Beach. The most impressive part of it all is how LeBron and Jenkins were able to keep this thing quiet for so long. Rumors are saying that the two wrote the letter together on Thursday night and had it published Friday morning. I’m not buying it. I see this written on Wednesday night and somehow these two were able to keep it from being leaked Thursday and into Friday. Either way, we are talking about the most scrutinized athlete of our generation with cameras following his every move. One would think that with all of the “reliable sources” out there these days, that one of them would have broken the story.
Let’s talk about LeBron James the man and his decision to return to Cleveland. I have heard multiple people say that this was a narcissistic and ego-centered move by James and that he simply turned his back on Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. How can anyone blame a man for wanting to play for his hometown team and wanting to raise his children in the same area that he grew up in? He turned down millions of dollars by leaving the Heat just so he could play for his favorite team growing up. Remember, this is a team that went 33-49 last year and has been in the draft lottery ever since he left.
Now we can’t talk about LeBron James without talking about July 8th, 2010 when he announced he was going to join the Miami Heat with an hour long special on ESPN known as “The Decision”. I might be the only person who feels this way, but I didn’t hate the way James left Cleveland, I actually loved it. People seem to forget that he was able to raise millions of dollars for the Boys and Girls Club just by having “The Decision”.
People continue to bash LeBron for ditching his hometown fans for teaming up with Wade and Bosh in order to win multiple titles. Isn’t it an athlete’s dream to win multiple championships? LeBron was just doing what almost every other athlete would do in that given situation, but for some reason, James gets criticized for it. Reporters and fans talk about wanting an athlete on their team who is willing to do whatever it takes to win that elusive title and that’s what James did. There is no way it was easy for him to leave his hometown, but he did what he had to do in order to win. And that’s what LeBron and the Heat did, win.
He accomplished his goals, and now wants to give back to the community that shaped him into the man he is today. He turned down millions upon millions of dollars in both cases. Tell me where you can find an athlete like that today.
All of this is why LeBron James is the ideal role model for athletes and in many cases a great model for everyone in our society. Do whatever it takes to accomplish your dreams, to accomplish your goals, but never forget who raised you and always give back to them whenever you have the opportunity.
James has grown up exponentially over the last four years and truly understands what it means to succeed in life. It’s time that we all do the same and stop criticizing the man for his faults and instead commend him for all his successes.