By: Taren Vaughan
It’s been several months now since LeBron James’ departure from the Cleveland Cavaliers. And fans all over are still somewhat salty about the NBA superstar’s exit from the squad calling it an “outstanding performance” from a traitor. Many people other than Cavs fans have voiced their opinions over and over again about the whole situation concerning King James. And quite frankly, they are beating a dead horse repeatedly by doing so. But as the media so likes to do, the incident was brought to James’ attention yet again. And his most recent comments have angered fans even more.
During a conversation with CNN’s Soledad O’Brien, James made a statement that upset those “loving” Cavalier fans once again:
O’Brien: “Do you think there’s a role that race plays in this?”
James: “I think so at times. It’s always, you know, a race factor.”
James’ manager Maverick Carter also went on to make his own statement concerning race as well:
Carter: “It definitely played a role in some of the stuff coming out of the media, things that were written, for sure.”
So who’s statement are people really pissed off about? Because looking at the two, James’ statement was pretty general. Where in there did he say that race was the absolute 100% reason behind what happened to him? Point that out to me because I think I missed that somewhere. If you are going to be mad at anyone, be mad at his manager’s choice of words not his. After all, Carter was the “definite” one. But because James is the star in this equation, he is catching the most heat for these comments.
Now critics are saying that James is pulling the ever so popular race card, using it as an excuse for the treatment he received from Cavs’ fans and other team affiliates. You know that card, the one that us black folks tend to pull when we have no real reason behind why things unfold for us in the way that they do. Give me a break. I’m sorry but unless you have been living in a complete bubble for your entire life, race is and will always be a factor when it comes to sports. And if people would take a moment to really think about what he said, then maybe they would fully understand the gist of his comment instead of relating it all back to his choice to leave Cleveland.
First of all, we all know good and well that if LeBron James wasn’t a black man, none of that burning of the jersey nonsense would have even taken place. So please don’t even try to defend that foolishness. Secondly, the majority of NBA fans who actually purchase tickets to see these players play are you guessed it, white people. Most black people, and I am speaking as a whole and not in specifics, can’t afford season tickets to professional athletic events. Watching them on television is as far as some us will ever get. So the majority of individuals who are filling up the seats in these million-dollar state-of-the-art arenas are Caucasians. So really how far-fetched was James’ comment? You mean to tell me it wasn’t valid whatsoever? Numerous NBA analysts, critics and even coaches have come out the woodworks to give their opinions on the matter. And as expected, many of them are hammering James for bringing race into play.
Let me take a slight detour for a second. What do people really want from this man? I guess the Cleveland fans are mad because instead of taking this moment to make a formal apology to them for leaving their “great organization”, he decided to go in a totally different direction. People really act like James didn’t have the right to leave the Cavaliers. Did we forget that playing professional sports is a job? Jobs of all of kind run their courses after awhile and lose their initial spark that they once had. And when you don’t like your job, what is the first thing that you do? Look for another one. Mind you, there are plenty of people out there who walk straight out of their jobs without even thinking about giving a two weeks notice everyday. So once again what is the problem?
Oh wait, I forgot. It was the way he left the team that they are pissed about. I guess fans expected LeBron to drum up a letter of departure. Would that have made you them feel better? How would the letter have read? “I’m sorry I had to leave the team because we were losing”? It’s funny how people still continue to bring up this whole situation. But they all seem to leave out one of the most important components of that night. And that was that as a result of “The Decision”, over 3 million dollars was raised to help the Boys and Girls Club of America. Hmm, I guess that slipped a lot of people’s minds. Too busy hating “the traitor” I presume.
Here’s a thought. How about we all just let LeBron James do what he does best. And that is playing the game of basketball. At the end of the day, he is not a member of the Cleveland Cavaliers’ team anymore. That became a reality a few months ago. So my suggestion to all the members of the “We hate LeBron” club, please find another hobby. It’s getting kind of played out at this point don’t you think? But back to the subject at hand, whether you are a black person or not, you have to admit that in certain circumstances the color of your skin does play a huge part in how things play out for you. And that my friends, is nothing but the truth. And if I’m not a good enough source for you, I’m sure Tiger Woods and Michael Vick would have no problems backing me up on my statement.