Tha Sports Junkies 101

LeBron Says KD Going To Oakland Is Good For The NBA

LeBron Photo by Erick Drost via Flickr


Greatness is a funny thing. It is divisive, polarizing, and at its core, entertaining.

Teams like the Patriots, the 1990’s Yankees, and any team with LeBron James, become engulfed by the trappings of success. Winning at a high level is great TV, but before too long casual fans begin to revile ultra successful teams.

LeBron is all too familiar with this. He appeared in four straight Finals with the Miami Heat, and has recently appeared in the Finals in back to back years with Cleveland.

He was lauded worldwide after his decision to join the Miami Heat in 2010. At the time critics and pundits picked James apart for joining a “Super Team.” For not being able to win “on his own.”

All factors notwithstanding, LeBron is supportive of Kevin Durant and his decision to play in Oakland. He went as far as to call it “great for our league.”

The question is, why? Why does he perceive it as great for the league? Is he just toeing the company line?

Here’s the thing, I don’t think it’s good for the league. It knocks the Oklahoma City Thunder down a notch. It turns Golden State into an offensive juggernaut with little to no interior presence. It turns the West into Golden State and San Antonio and then everyone else. And it may not even be Golden State and San Antonio. Most likely it is just Golden State. Competitive balance in the Western Conference has practically vanished.

Does LeBron think that Durant going to Golden State paves the way for Cleveland vs Golden State part 3? I mean, it does. But even without Durant heading to Oakland, were we not more than likely to see Cleveland vs Golden State part 3 anyway?

Who knows what goes through LeBron’s mind? Most of the time when he is addressing the media he seems to be answering questions as PC as possible. Is this just LeBron? Or is this a carefully crafted public image of LeBron, designed to turn him into a billionaire several times over in the not so distant future?

I just can’t buy what LeBron is selling.

Kevin Durant going to Oakland isn’t good for the league.

If I were to reverse course, try to examine this from the viewpoint that Durant’s move is good for the league, I come up with this:

Casual fans sit on the fringes of all sports. They are what drives every sport. Diehard fans will follow their sport for better or worse. That said, for the casual fan, Durant going to Oakland is great. It creates intrigue, generates interest from fans who might otherwise not be interested. It adds a new dynamic to the Cleveland/Golden State rivalry that is quickly brewing at the heart of the league. Come next June, the fringe NBA fan will be interested in what happens in the Finals, and Durant is a big part of that.

This has to be the angle from which LeBron is perceiving Durant’s change of address.

After examining LeBron’s comments on a deeper level, I’m not sure if I agree with him. I am, however, beginning to be swayed.

The thing I am sure of is that Durant and the Warriors will be must see TV. Next season will begin with the hype meter on 10, and that’s good for the league.

LeBron is a smart guy.