Tired of the LeBron James rumors yet? Remember Michael Jordan? I know I never remembered any free agency rumors. Forget social media. What do you hear about him now? Every day this free agency period passes, I gain more respect for Jordan. I want everyone to take a look at the two pictures. A long look. Look at LeBron James, a dude that is looking for the exit. Then look at Michael Jordan, just as cool as a fan. Not pressed, just handling business in his own time and on his own terms. Just like a grown man. Two different eras, two different times, two ways of doing business.
Another day in the NBA has passed and another day LeBron James has not made a decision on where he is going to play next year. July 8th, 2014 marked four years to the date that LeBron James announced on live television that he was going to take his talents to South Beach to play for the Miami Heat. Then we had to deal with the parade. Then that infamous rant…
…not two, not three, not four, five…
Oh, do we really have to go through that mess again? You don’t want to read that mess no more than I want to write it. But LeBron wants to go through this mess all over again four years later.
You know I’m going to start a trend here. Apologies to Will Smith but I’m going to call LeBron James the Fresh Prince. Look Will, you’ve outgrown the moniker, it’s time to give it to someone a little younger…acting.
Why am I calling James this. Remember the open to the show “The Fresh Prince of Bel Air?” There’s a line that applies to LeBron every time thing get a little rough. The line is…
…I got in one little fight and my mom got scared…
Only he’s not moving to his Aunt Vivian’s and Uncle Phil’s crib in Bel Air.
He’s just moving to another franchise where there is more talent to back him up and bail him out when things get tough.
Instead of one little fight, Lebron got in two fights. One was back in 2010 when the Boston Celtics slapped his Cleveland Cavaliers around in the Eastern Conference Semifinals. Can’t remember that one? How about a month back when the San Antonio Spurs laid his team down and tucked their title hopes to bed.
Now LeBron James is “allegedly” going to meet with Pat Riley this week to discuss his future with the Miami Heat. I say allegedly because who knows and really at this point who really cares? I know one player who looks more and more like an NBA icon the longer this mess goes on…
This never happened when G.O.A.T. played. Sure, he shocked the Bulls fans back in 1993 after the three-peat when he went to play baseball. That was different, he lost his passion to play basketball and wanted to honor his father and fulfill a promise. No problems with that.
Even when Jordan came back with the Wizards because he missed the game of basketball, he would have never put on a ridiculous spectacle like the “Fresh Prince” is doing right now.
Let’s be clear on something, Pippen Peoples, NBA fans, new readers to Pippen Ain’t Easy, little children, dogs and cats…
LeBron James is doing all of this on purpose to get some attention.
There I said it. LeBron knows free agency will not really start until he and Carmelo Anthony make their respective decisions. What’s even more ridiculous about this situation is it’s like watching two divas show up to a party four hours late and gets mad at the people who left.
Everyone remembers LeBron James taking off his jersey in his last game with the Cavaliers. Michael Jordan untucked his jersey in his last playoff loss. What did he do? He got in a weight room. He got stronger. He got better (if that was possible) and took down the Pistons and went on to win his first world title. He didn’t run after a spanking.
You know Boston beat his teams too, LeBron. But Jordan stayed.
The Detroit Pistons beat him three times before he got through. Jordan didn’t run to New York to play with Patrick Ewing. As a Knick fan, that would have been cool. But I digress.
Michael Jordan had tough negotiations with the Chicago Bulls, but we all knew, Michael Jordan was going nowhere. He wasn’t going to leave and the Bulls were not going to let him leave and deal with Bulls fans turning in their season tickets. The Bulls front office weren’t that stupid. Fact of the matter is Michael Jordan really didn’t start getting real money until 1996. Take a look at his salary throughout his career according to spotrac.com
August 1, 1984
Michael Jordan signed a seven-year $6.3 million dollar contract with the Chicago Bulls.
September 20, 1988
Renegotiated a contract with Chicago. Signed an eight year $25.7 million dollar contract.
Notice the money here. I’m going to go out on a limb a say he was worth more money than these two contracts. He knew that the Bulls needed money to build a team around him. He didn’t start getting money until the end.
July 23, 1996
Michael Jordan signed a one year $30.14 million dollar contract.
October 10, 1997
Michael Jordan signed a one year $33.14 million dollar contract.
Now finally, take a look at the money the Washington Wizards paid him…
Michael Jordan signed a two year 2.03 million dollar contact.
Umm, that’s the league minimum. You see Jordan never made a spectacle of the free agency process. Furthermore, he always played on his terms. He never would have joined forces with Larry Bird, Magic Johnson or GOD FORBID Isiah Thomas. He wanted to beat them, not join forces. He even said so back in 2010.
If the Fresh Prince of South Beach leaves Miami. Let’s start looking at knocking him out of the top ten players of all time. Then after that go on YouTube and watch old clips of the 1980s and 90s because that’s basically where the competitive basketball has gone.