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Adrian Wojnarowski on LeBron

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Adrian Wojnarowski on LeBron

Unread postby Bill the Butcher » Wed Oct 27, 2010 10:59 am

http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/news;_ylt=A ... tics102710

BOSTON – When LeBron James was running roughshod over the Cleveland Cavaliers, it became common for him to respond to tough coaching and differing degrees of conflict with the sheer shutdown mode. There goes LeBron, stomping off to the locker room with a staff member in hot pursuit to talk him back into practice. Come on back, King. We need you.

James would mope back onto the floor, reluctant to be told that someone disagreed with his belief on a matter. The Cavaliers’ culture of enabling, letting things go and go, exacerbated these issues. James stayed in a cocoon of perpetual adolescence.

“His coping skills,” one perceptive ex-teammate said, “had been largely underdeveloped.”

The world is watching James in a different way now, with a far more critical eye. Everything changed in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference semifinals last May, when the private acting out spilled into the public for the first time. Without leaving the floor, LeBron walked out on the Cavaliers and so started a spiral that eventually led him on that private jet to Miami International and into the waiting arms of old man Riles and his boy wonder, Erik Spoelstra.

James had come to Miami to escape the cocoon of Cleveland, the so-so talent surrounding him, a management and ownership who never commanded his respect. He had come to find a way through the Orlando Magic and the Boston Celtics, yet suddenly it felt like old times on opening night at the Garden. Around LeBron James, Chris Bosh played the part of J.J. Hickson, and Dwyane Wade had the playoff touch of Mo Williams.

“Rome wasn’t built in a day,” James declared.

He had 31 points and eight turnovers, a part-splashy, part-sloppy debut. This was no coronation for the Miami Heat but an affirmation of some hard truths: For the incredible strengths they’ll have this season, they’ll have severe flaws too: size, shooting and the bench. The Celtics exposed every one of those elements in an 88-80 victory on opening night. Miami will get its 58, 60 regular-season victories, but it won’t get through Boston or Orlando unless James understands that this Miami franchise under Pat Riley can have transformative powers.

There was a Finals-esque media crush at the Garden, a night that Celtics general manager Danny Ainge brought him “more ticket requests for any game ever.” This wasn’t because of the deepest Celtics roster since the 1980s, nor Wade and Bosh. Everyone comes for the Drama King, LeBron James.

“We know what’s going on,” Bosh said. “You turn on TV [and] you see what’s going on. We knew it was going to be like that. Dealing with it is another thing.”

Coping with it, he means. That’s James’ burden. He didn’t take well to the pressure a season ago and cracked before everyone’s eyes in that exit series to the Celtics. The Heat are James’ team, and that has nothing to do with who’ll score the most points or who’ll take the most shots, or even the big ones. For better and worse, James fills up the locker room, the team plane, the floor – fills up space – in a way that demands most of the room’s air. He stepped out of LRMR’s kiddy marketing pool this week into the big leagues with a Nike campaign that asks: What should I do?

The Heat are telling him simply: Stay in line. After a preseason game in New Orleans, a league source said, James was chatting with Chris Paul(notes) outside the locker room and decided that he wanted to hit the town with the Hornets star. The Heat’s charter planned to fly home that night, but James suggested to Wade that perhaps they ought to ask Spoelstra about leaving in the morning to return home.

James could always do this in Cleveland, but Wade wanted no part of seeking permission. James did, and the message the coach delivered was unmistakable: Get on the plane; we’re going home.

This is how the Riley regime will make James accountable in ways the Cavaliers never did. James isn’t holding them hostage the way he did in Cleveland. No more separate sections of the team plane that belong just to James and his guys. He signed his free-agent deal and shouldered a burden to win – and win now – unmatched in the history of American sport.

There’s never been such a target in the NBA, and that includes the Jordan Bulls, the Showtime Lakers, no one. These Heat are the creation of the digital media age, the time of 24-7 viral assault on your senses. Bosh is right: It isn’t going away. So how do you deal with it all? Eventually, he isn’t going to like something Spoelstra tells him. Or one of Spoelstra’s assistants tells him. He won’t like the way he’s getting blame when the team’s struggling and Wade, the Miami icon, gets a pass.

Something will spur him because it always does, and then everyone will find out again about LeBron James’ coping mechanisms.

James never has been able to make fun of himself, and he needed a Nike campaign to do it for him. He’d better find a way to take a sobering look at his flaws, his failures and scrub away old stains with a new start on South Beach.

What should he do?

Take a look around, embrace Riley’s culture and understand that he needs the Heat as much as they need him.

What should he do?

No more running, LeBron. No more hiding. Finally, there’s someone to confront James. There’s someone who isn’t held hostage, who isn’t terrified of telling him, “No.” Opening night, a sluggish loss to the Celtics, and none of it mattered so much in late October. Cleveland is long gone, and so needs to be the perpetual adolescence of that cocoon. He’s under Old Man Riles’ watch now, and that could change everything for LeBron James. That could complete him.
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Re: Adrian Wojnarowski on LeBron

Unread postby motherscratcher » Wed Oct 27, 2010 11:26 am

I wonder who the ex-teammate was?
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Re: Adrian Wojnarowski on LeBron

Unread postby papacass » Wed Oct 27, 2010 11:44 am

Amazing. Wojo just wrote an entire column on LeBron, yet the overlying theme seems to be "Dan Gilbert is a putz." And he did it all without even mentioning Gilbert's name.
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Re: Adrian Wojnarowski on LeBron

Unread postby Bill the Butcher » Wed Oct 27, 2010 11:53 am

Give it time.

Who knows, one day we'll be saying "Dan Gilbert and Pat Riley are putz."

...putzes?
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Re: Adrian Wojnarowski on LeBron

Unread postby Triple-S » Wed Oct 27, 2010 12:20 pm

If the NBA had a better system set up, where we were all not constantly worried about losing him to New York. Things would have turned out differently. There would not have been coddling, and the Cavs could have put in place an organization with the purpose of winning a championship first, not trying to keep their superstar happy.

Could one imagine if say, a player of LeBron's caliber pulled his crap around say...Eric Mangini and the Browns?

"You either sit your ass down, shut up, and watch film, or we're trading you tommorow, and it will be to whom ever has the best offer, not where YOU want to go, if it's Detriot, so freaking be it.".
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Re: Adrian Wojnarowski on LeBron

Unread postby peeker643 » Wed Oct 27, 2010 1:27 pm

Bill the Butcher wrote:Give it time.

Who knows, one day we'll be saying "Dan Gilbert and Pat Riley are putz."

...putzes?


Putzi?

Putzae?

Hmm....
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Re: Adrian Wojnarowski on LeBron

Unread postby papacass » Wed Oct 27, 2010 1:29 pm

peeker643 wrote:
Bill the Butcher wrote:Give it time.

Who knows, one day we'll be saying "Dan Gilbert and Pat Riley are putz."

...putzes?


Putzi?

Putzae?

Hmm....


Putzi? Only if the novel was written by Mario Putzo.
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Re: Adrian Wojnarowski on LeBron

Unread postby Ziner » Wed Oct 27, 2010 4:17 pm

Reghi just told this story as if he was the first and only to report it.
In the end, we're all "only for a limited time," you guys.
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Re: Adrian Wojnarowski on LeBron

Unread postby Gradysmanldy » Thu Oct 28, 2010 12:16 pm

Flock of wild putzoi
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Re: Adrian Wojnarowski on LeBron

Unread postby gotribe31 » Thu Oct 28, 2010 2:52 pm

Motherscratcher wrote:I wonder who the ex-teammate was?


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Re: Adrian Wojnarowski on LeBron

Unread postby Fire Marshall Bill » Thu Oct 28, 2010 6:53 pm

peeker643 wrote:
Bill the Butcher wrote:Give it time.

Who knows, one day we'll be saying "Dan Gilbert and Pat Riley are putz."

...putzes?


Putzi?

Putzae?

Hmm....


Putzii
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Re: Adrian Wojnarowski on LeBron

Unread postby bookelly » Mon Nov 01, 2010 1:07 am

Putzes.

Inflected form. Which is what LBJ is, an inflected form. (smoke)

http://www.learnersdictionary.com/search/putz
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Re: Adrian Wojnarowski on LeBron

Unread postby StewieG » Tue Nov 30, 2010 9:23 am

http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/news?slug=a ... stra112910

Another nugget of gold from Woj. I bet he made LeQueen's "list".
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Re: Adrian Wojnarowski on LeBron

Unread postby Larvell Blanks » Tue Nov 30, 2010 9:46 am

After reading Wojo's piece, it wouldn't surprise me Thurs if James put up Game 6 numbers, you know, just enough to cram the box score but not enough to put his team over the top. This way he can say he didn't shrink in the pressure of returning to Cleveland but was hindered by Spol's lack of imagination on offense and refusal to let James run the show.

Surprised in that article to see Wade reluctantly it seems, take to LBJ's side of things.
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Re: Adrian Wojnarowski on LeBron

Unread postby papacass » Tue Nov 30, 2010 9:59 am

Larvell Blanks wrote:After reading Wojo's piece, it wouldn't surprise me Thurs if James put up Game 6 numbers, you know, just enough to cram the box score but not enough to put his team over the top. This way he can say he didn't shrink in the pressure of returning to Cleveland but was hindered by Spol's lack of imagination on offense and refusal to let James run the show.


LeBron is going to try to drop 70 on the Cavs if he can. Cavs can't play any D, it's not like they're going to be able to stop him. And you can bet LeBron wants to emphatically remind Dan Gilbert and all the haters in Cleveland what we don't have anymore. If Bron was as classy as Braylon, he'd tweet something about getting our popcorn ready.

This is one game where I don't think the Heat's troubled team dynamic is going to matter much. Wade and Bosh know this is LeBron's game on Thursday. They'll probably stand aside and give him this one. Heck, even Spoelstra might step aside, recognizing that LeBron's fury is enough to pulverize Cleveland.

The bullshit can resume for the Heat on Friday morning. Thursday night, LeBron gets to be a homicidal maniac against one of the league's 98-pound weaklings. Which is really his specialty.
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Re: Adrian Wojnarowski on LeBron

Unread postby fundamentals » Tue Nov 30, 2010 10:20 am

I may be off and I hope I am, but I can see MeBron go for at least fifty in his return. I think the other two wackos are going to defer to him as was mentioned in a previous post. I just want to see him put on his buttocks repeatedly if he takes the ball into the paint.
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"We had a great time together."
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Re: Adrian Wojnarowski on LeBron

Unread postby motherscratcher » Tue Nov 30, 2010 11:22 am

Yeah, LBJ is going to go off. It will get ugly, and he will probably be preening and glaring and all of that shit that will make him look like even more of a douchebag.

I just wish that he was self aware enough to have a twinge of regret when he contrasts his reception with the likely loving reception of Z. I doubt it, though.

Also, I want to walk into a bar and find Woj sitting there. His drinks will be free the rest of the night.
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Re: Adrian Wojnarowski on LeBron

Unread postby jb » Tue Nov 30, 2010 2:08 pm

StewieG wrote:http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/news?slug=aw-lebronspoelstra112910

Another nugget of gold from Woj. I bet he made LeQueen's "list".



Read the title really fast at first and thought it said, "to blow him."
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Re: Adrian Wojnarowski on LeBron

Unread postby metalhead9x9 » Tue Nov 30, 2010 3:33 pm

papacass wrote:And you can bet LeBron wants to emphatically remind Dan Gilbert and all the haters in Cleveland what we don't have anymore.


No doubt about that, I'm just hoping his old 'mates have enough collective fury of their own to push it to a close enough game and cancel out some of his satisfaction. They'll want to prove that they aren't some chumps left at the altar.
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