Monday, November 24, 2008

The Lebron James 2010 Story Turns 2008.

Many of you have already seen the Deadspin story on Adrian Wojnarowski and Amar's argument. But I thought it was only fair to add some details that Deadspin wasn't able to cover. In the interests of full disclosure, yes, I am a Cavs fan, and yes, I have criticized Adrian before for his lack of integrity on covering the Lebron story. But no, I don't approve of the strong language Amar used, either.

First, as to the matter of Adrian's not being able to find Amar's e-mail address. I wanted to contact Amar this summer to ask him some questions about the Cavs. It's the first and last time I've talked to him. I was able to find his e-mail address via Google in 5 minutes. Apparently that makes me a better reporter than Adrian Wojnarowski! Seriously, Adrian gets paid to do reporting, and he can't find an e-mail address? The call to Amar's number was clearly meant to intimidate Amar right back. Did Adrian have a right to fight fire with fire? Sure. But don't pretend Adrian "couldn't find" Amar's e-mail address.

Second, Adrian has tried to twist every NBA trade story to be about Lebron. Please look at Adrian's archive. Since the start of the NBA season, he has written 13 NBA stories. Remember, Adrian's supposed to be a national columnist for Yahoo!, covering the NBA as a whole. How many of his stories do you think mention Lebron James leaving the Cavs? 5. That means that nearly 40% of Adrian Wojnarowski's stories on the NBA are devoted to suggesting that Lebron might leave the Cavaliers! No bias there, right? After losing his storyline that Lebron would surely go to the Nets, he now is plugging in any team with cap room as a possible destination for Lebron.

Now, I do believe the Knicks might be competitive for Lebron James. But Peter King had some good things to say about the future of the NBA in his column today:

"a. If I read one more story about where LeBron James might play two years from now, I'm going to puke.

b. Really: In what other sport are the next two seasons rendered totally meaningless for a cornerstone-of-the-league franchise like the New York Knickerbockers?"

And later:
"What if LeBron James rips up his knee before then? What if Dwyane Wade, another prospective free-agent who turns 29 in the 2010-11 season, continues to have knee trouble? Here's my question for the NBA: Do you mean to tell me it's good for your game that a team is going to play the next 164 games with an eye not on the present, but on the future? And what about the Cavaliers? Why would their fans show any loyalty to James as he drops all these hints about playing out the string in Cleveland? It's an ugly, stupid, fan-abusing situation. Fans should rebel, not kneel and bow to Knick management and say, "Oh, we are not worthy!''"

If things are so ugly in 2008, what will the atmosphere be like in 2010? Please, just let me enjoy two more years of Lebron in peace, ok? After that, if he wants to leave, I am ok with that. He's a grown man, and I thank him for so many great years. But I've had enough with the biased coverage from so many columnists just looking to stir up their home fans. Again, I don't condone Amar's words, but I hope this post helped you understand why some of us Cleveland fans are angry at the Lebron 2010 coverage.

EDIT TO ORIGINAL at 3:15 EST: Just to make my views absolutely clear, physical threats against sports writers are always wrong. I think Amar went too far in that area. Perhaps he meant to joke, but it certainly didn't come across that way in the original post. END EDIT.

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