Friday, July 2, 2010
Rant #290: King James Holds Court
Professional basketball making the front pages of your local newspaper in July?
Well, before you get worried and say "WNBA," I am actually talking about the NBA.
Right in the middle of baseball season, when the pennant races are heating up as much as the weather, we find ourselves in something of a basketball frenzy.
Why, you might ask.
Well, in an unprecedented move in any professional sport that I can remember, a number of top-flight players are free agents, and the maneuvering to grab their talents for a hefty fee is feeding this frenzy.
And nobody holds court like Lebron James, unquestionably the best player of the lot.
He has played his entire career with the Cleveland Cavaliers, his hometown team, and now, he is a free agent, open to any and all offers by other teams, including the New York Knicks, the New Jersey Nets, and the Chicago Bulls.
All of these teams have held court with him, and have created almost a comical situation between the teams, James, the media, and the fans.
While fans line up outside the offices where these wooing sessions are going on, team representatives drive up, passing each other on the road to see James.
The media covers this as if some international dignitary is holding court, and in some respects, James is one, since he is so well known around the globe.
It almost resembles one of those meetings you remember in those old movies, where the king sits on his throne, surrounded by his queen and other members of his court, while a visitor from another land tries to entice the king by bringing him some valuable goods from far away.
It is so comical, but when you think about the money that is being talked about in these meetings, it almost makes you want to choke.
Heck, sign me. I can live with a measly fraction of what they are throwing at him.
A million or two would satisfy me. I don't need any more. I will make due.
Unfortunately, my best days of basketball were over in 1975 or so, or more than 10 years before James was born.
Who will James and the other free agents, including Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh, end up with?
Some will probably stay with their teams, others will leave for greener pastures.
But this current frenzy is truly something we have never seen before, not even in the early days of baseball's free agent signings.
And King James holds court. His suitors come from near and far. What will happen?
Who knows, and that makes it all the more fun for us peons, who work 9-to-5 jobs and will never make in a lifetime what James will make in a year.
But that's the way it is. Even in a recession, there is money to be spent.
And teams like the Knicks, Bulls, Nets, Cavaliers and several others will spend until the cows come home.
Posted by Larry at 3:44 AM