When Lebron lost to the Spurs in the 2007 NBA Finals, the prevailing thought was if he could take that team to the Finals, it would just be a matter of time before he is surrounded with better players and wins a title.
Same thing they thought about Dan Marino when he lost to the 49ers in the 1984 Super Bowl. Marino was young and as talented of a quarterback the NFL had ever seen. It would just be a matter of time before he would win a Super Bowl.
Marino never got back and while he is still considered one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time just on the strength of his numbers, you don’t hear many people calling him THE GREATEST. Has nothing to do with his skills, but the perception that to be consider one of THE GREATS you have to win a championship.
Before Elway won his two rings, you didn’t find too many people who ranked him over Marino, now he is universally ranked ahead of him.
Skills didn’t changed, just jewelry.
There is a big difference between being very good and being legendary. When you are competing against legends, you have to do more.
A lot has changed since 2007, even though it has only been five years the way sports are reported, the number of outlets, sports talk radio, blogs and social media have changed the way athletes are looked upon.
Lebron is caught up in this hurricane of a 24 hour news cycle where no matter the discussion his name is going to be brought up.
It reminds me a lot of when Shaq left Kobe and no matter what Kobe did the prevailing thought was…….
BUT, HE DOESN’T HAVE A RING WITHOUT SHAQ
Didn’t matter if Kobe dropped 81 points, drugged a team with Smush Parker and Kwame Brown as starters to the playoffs, put up a bunch 40 points game in a row or average 35 PPG for a season it was always…
BUT, HE DOESN’T HAVE A RING WITHOUT SHAQ
This was in the mid 2000s before Twitter, before this new age media really took place, but even then the voices were loud. Could you imagine what they would be like now if Kobe hadn’t gotten those two additional rings sans Shaq?
That is why Lebron, who is doing things on the court, that probably won’t be appreciated until decades from now is stuck in this hurricane and drowning under the pressure to get the ring.
Winning 3 MVPs in 9 years is an amazing accomplishment. Leading a team with Chris Bosh and D Wade in points, rebounds and assists is amazing. Averaging 27, 8, 6 while shooting 53% from the field is amazing. Having the ability to guard all five positions on the court while also playing all five positions on the court is amazing.
It doesn’t matter.
In the future people will come to understand how great Lebron was, but right now in a Skip Bayless fueled society the could care less if Lebron won 20 MVPs.
Lebron understands this and he knows the longer he goes without a championship the harder it becomes. You can’t always assume next year will be the year.
Ask Barkley, Malone, Stockton, Ewing and so many more.
Lebron bares the burden of his own greatness. He is so good people don’t understand why he doesn’t have a championship yet.
He legacy isn’t competing against the Carmelo Anthonys of the world it is competing against he Legends of the NBA. The Birds, The Magics, The Jordans, The Hakeems, The Kobes, The Shaqs and etc.
He brought the majority of this pressure on himself.
If he stayed in Cleveland, he would have been seen more like Stockton and Malone or like AI trying to carry the Sixers, but by going to Miami and promising not 4, not 5, not 6 and etc Championships he put a bullseye on his back. He did nothing wrong in going to Miami, he was a free agent and could choose his place of employment like any other free agent has done in the history of sports.
But, he gave all those fans and media members the ammunition to say, it wasn’t us, who said we were taking out talents to South Beach, it wasn’t us who promised 7 rings and it wasn’t us who went to another Superstar team for help.
They are right, Lebron put himself in this spotlight, so no one should feel sorry for him, uneasy the head that wears the crown.
The Heat can’t win a Championship unless Lebron is King of the Court.
D Wade is great, Chris Bosh plays his part, but The MVP doesn’t chill in corners when the game is on the line. Lebron has to take control, because if he doesn’t all he will be remember for is his stats and his failure to win a championships.
Records can be broken just asked Dan Marino, but they can never take your ring.