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What IF LeBron was the GOAT? | What IF Wednesdays

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The NBA is built on symbols. Jerry West is in their very logo. Michael Jordan is the symbol for reaching pinnacles of greatness. Shaq was Power. Spud Webb was the little man who could.

The league had these pillars to build its legend upon and market its mystique which would grow and change as the years go on. But only on the level that people would challenge Mount Olympus, but dare not break through the cloud line.

As much as we are fascinated with Kobe being the next Michael, KD being the next Bird, Porzingis the next Dirk, the powers that be and the branding never want it to be true.

This plan has worked out to a T thus far but….

Then along came LeBron James.

The player who could pass like Magic, score like Michael, defend like Pippen and rebound like Malone.

He was and is a player beyond definition, yet that’s why he’s so good for the league.

When I look at all the hate LeBron has taken from critics, I see the reality of a player who is challenging the establishment. To his credit, it’s the gauntlet every megastar must endure.

I won’t argue why LeBron is better than each player—be it rings, numbers, percentage in Finals. The criteria are vague and often unsupported aside from taking the side that does not play in his favor.

He has 4 MVPs in 13 years, but one could argue he’s been the best player since 2007.

We criticize him for leaving Cleveland, but not the franchise for failing to give him his Pippen/Rodman, making it his need to go to Miami.

We say he is not a typical superstar because he doesn’t want the last shot, but we do so in an era where we support franchises that look for the best shot instead of iso ball, a scheme he embodies as one player.

We say the league is softer now and it’s easier for him, but don’t allow for the idea that hand checking would have made him an incredibly dominant defender.

All to say, I feel we hold sacred the idea that legends of the game hold a certain mystique. Breaking that tradition like LeBron did, using The Decision to bring the power from the owners to the players dilutes our view of his greatness.

I would just say that while fandom is great—don’t forget to enjoy the ride.

Phil is the tall guy who ended up talking circles around the game better than dribbling circles around players. He has odd fascinations with the NBA Draft, trade deadlines, arm length, and how a team is built. Phil brings energy, passion and laughs to every conversation; catch him weekly on The Away Team podcast.

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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. zone

    October 16, 2017 at 10:05 am

    Heⅼlo, I ⅼog on to your blog daily. Your humoriѕtiϲ style is awesome, keep doing what you’re doing!

  2. Press Basketball

    October 17, 2017 at 5:48 pm

    Thanks for the positive feedback!

    We are very excited for the upcoming season and will have a ton of fresh press for you to check out!

    -Press Basketball Team

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Featured Article

Ride The Wave

Back in October the sky was the limit. LeBron had decided to move to LA and join the Lakers. Things were good then.

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Back in October the sky was the limit. LeBron had decided to move to LA and join the Lakers, drawing in a decent support team and a lot of talk that the West was looking incredibly dominant next to a “weaker” East. Things were good then.

Five months later and things couldn’t be farther from that idylistic picture. The East thrived without the King and GMs put together some of the most noteworthy teams in a while. And the Lakers? The Lakers currently sit in the 11th spot of the Western Conference with very little hope of making it to the playoffs. They’re a team that is constantly attacked for their lack of chemistry, skill, and effort. For the first time in a long time, LA became synonymous with “hopeless”.

This wasn’t the future we saw for the King.

On the heels of a night filled with one of his greatest achievements ever, the Lakers as a team walked away with a loss to the Denver Nuggets. A night that began on a high note went out on one that was equivalent to sour candy. Furthermore, a frustrated team left an arena, hopped on social media, and found a bevy of congrats for their star player, while enduring the storm that came with another Lakers loss.

It seems that James’ stardom has reached a tipping point, one that makes him a GM one moment, the King of the league the next, and finally the biggest point of contention within the locker room. The most notable thing is that it is clearly wearing him down. Chris Martin let us know that “nobody one said it was easy”, but you’ve got to ask yourself, does it have to be so hard?

The answer is unfortunately, yes. It’s always going to be this way, and there is no fighting the current, but there is beauty in riding the wave. Embracing that moment when the wave comes crashing down on you is important, because it’s always going to happen, but your attitude will always be remembered. LeBron rides high, and keeps things in the positive light for the media, but he’s got to realize that they are writing his story, and he doesn’t have to play into their’s. Ride the wave, and take the loss in stride with all the great that has come with it, but take the loss because your part of a team that is.

The wave has crashed down, but the current will bring another.

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Year 15 | A Mini Documentary

Year 15 of a legacy…

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What’s to come for the man on top, and what got him here?

It’s Year 15 of a man’s career, but it’s also Year 15 of a legacy…

Created by Tristan Laughton | Twitter: @Ctrice

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Editorial

Something Out of Nothing

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It’s March 2016, and I’m driving with Alan Shane Lewis to Montreal to meet with Marc Griffin and Phil Boileau. We’re meeting to speak about this exciting new idea I pitched to them. We were tired of spinning the wheels on our own individual internet shows, and I told them that it was time we stopped waiting for a network and became the network.

We spoke that weekend about creating a community of content creators that all loved ball and came together to make unique content with unique voices – voices we felt were never heard in the mainstream. This community was the base of Press and we’d continue to push forward from that spot. We spoke about some amazing show ideas, article ideas, social media plan. It was truly an exciting time, and still one of the best weekends of my life.

Two years later and that group is a lot smaller, and that idea is Press Basketball.

It caught fire at the beginning and we had people joining our bright shiny new plaything left, right, and center. It was exciting, but now I kind of realize that a lot of it was just that we were that “bright shiny new thing”.

We ended up with a lot of Press Basketball “members” but when I stepped back and looked at what was happening… it wasn’t what I’d imagined. The fire burned out. The idea was gone. We had just become another thing trying to stay alive, waiting for some deus ex machina to show up with money and make everything okay.

I’ve gone through most of my life making something out of nothing. It’s never easy, but when it happens it’s always worth it… ALWAYS. Press made me feel alive at a point. It was literally all I could think about, and while it still is on my mind, it doesn’t make me feel alive. This hurts more than I can ever explain.

Changes are coming my friends. We’re not laying down and dying, and if we do it’s not going to be like this.

The core of Press will be setting fire to a lot over the next few weeks and I personally can’t wait for this to start. From the ashes something new will rise (I watched a lot of XMEN growing up).

Stay tuned, because it’s not over.

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Featured Article1 month ago

Ride The Wave

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