Every time something significant happens for the Cleveland Cavaliers these days some media idiot wants to use it as an excuse to speculate on LeBron James eventual return to the team that drafted him.
The Cavaliers won the first overall pick in the draft a couple of years ago and drafted point guard Kyrie Irving. According to the media, LeBron is going to go back eventually to play with him.
Irving has a huge game. LeBron has to be watching and waiting to play with this young stud.
The Cavs re-hire Mike Brown to coach the team. Oh yeah, James is definitely counting the days to when he can re-unite with his old coach.
And now the Cavs have won another draft lottery and some media idiot feels it’s time to start the countdown to when LeBron will be wearing a Cavs jersey again.
No disrespect to the city of Cleveland or the Cavaliers organization but honestly, name one person outside of the city of Cleveland who actually gave a crap about the Cavaliers before James arrived there in 2003?
Not you, not me, definitely not the media. Not one single person cared.
No one cared when guards Mark Price and Craig Ehlo toiled away all those years in Cleveland only to be playoff fodder for Michael Jordan’s dominant Bulls squads.
No one cared when Dan Majerle and Danny Ferry were raining down threes trying to keep this franchise relevant and a playoff contender.
And there was definitely no one around when ex-coach Mike Fratello and point guard Terrell Brandon had the Cavs on pace to be one of the lowest scoring teams ever, playing Fratello’s brand of “super slow-paced” basketball.
Only the people of Cleveland and true basketball fans remember the frustrating times that the Cavs went through before James came along.
Once James got there though, it seems like everyone cared. James made them relevant for the first time in that franchise’s not-so-storied history and when he left, it seems that everyone in the country was hurt.
No one was this hurt when the Chicago Bulls turned their back on Jordan refusing to let him compete for a seventh title and basically forcing him into his second retirement.
I guess people wouldn’t have been as upset with James if he had brought Cleveland a title before he left the way Jordan did the Bulls. Of course if he was actually able to win a title there he would still be wearing a Cavs jersey.
The speculation surrounding his so-called return to Cleveland makes absolutely no sense though.
The Miami Heat are loaded with talent. James is playing for one of the league’s best executives who also has the added pleasure of being a Hall-of-Fame coach on his resume’. James also gets to play with one of his best friends, the super-talented Dwyane Wade.
Miami’s president Pat Riley is always going to keep the Heat competitive and has shown an adeptness for finding talent that will mesh together on the floor. Riley also hand-picked head coach Erik Spoelstra to lead this squad.
Now it’s doubtful Spoelstra will ever be mentioned among the NBA’s greatest coaches ever, even if he is successful in winning a few more championships. Spoelstra’s not the best game manager or strategist for that matter but he does a great job making sure the Heat are prepared for anything the opposing team will throw at them.
The Cavaliers on the other hand haven’t shown themselves to be as capable of building the winning culture it had when LeBron was there.
Sure Irving’s progress is promising, Dion Waiters looks like a keeper and the Cavs have a great chance to add another good young player through the draft this year but I wouldn’t get overly optimistic about their future.
Irving played very little in college because of injuries and his injury problems have carried over into his pro career.
Irving missed 15 games his rookie season and 23 games this season due to injuries. Irving’s health issues could be troubling for this team’s future.
The Cavs won this year’s draft lottery but this is probably one of the weakest drafts in ages. There’s no clear cut choice for the number one spot, and the two best players in the draft aren’t great fits for the Cavs roster.
It’s even more doubtful that the return of coach Mike Brown will help turn this franchise’s fortunes. Brown had a way more talented team when he was coaching the Lakers last year but failed to reach expectations.
He couldn’t even win a preseason game this season.
Brown is an awesome defensive coach but he’s not a great game-manager or offensive play-caller. He’s not very good managing personalities either which was probably his biggest short-coming in L.A.
Although Kobe Bryant seemed to support him, Brown couldn’t get Bryant to see the importance of consistently feeding young center Andrew Bynum the ball. It didn’t help that Bynum had a few childish episodes of his own during Brown’s one full season coaching the Lakers.
Speaking of childish, let’s not forget the temper tantrum Cavs’ owner Dan Gilbert threw when LeBron left. He publicly lambasted James in an ad he took out in the paper shortly after James made “the Decision.”
That’s not saying that Gilbert and James’ relationship is irreparable but looking at all the things James has in Miami and looking at what he would have going for him in Cleveland, there’s no way James returns to Cleveland.
It’s just not a decision worth entertaining to be honest but if you believe the few media crackpots that keep pushing this story then be prepared to be very disappointed. Unless of course you’re a Cavs fan then you’re probably already used to it.
Roosevelt Hall is an NFL Blogger for The Sport Mentalist and an NBA Blogger for The Sport Mentalist 2. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org and be sure to follow him on Twitter @sportmentalist.