In the Long run: Let’s talk LA-Bron

Something that rocked the sports world this summer was NBA superstar LeBron James’s decision to leave the Cleveland Cavaliers and play for the Los Angeles Lakers. I have such mixed emotions about this move, so it hit me especially hard.

One half of me is disappointed. I don’t consider myself a big LeBron fan, but it’s hard to say that he’s not one of the greatest (dare I say the greatest) players of all time, so I have to admire him on a certain level, especially after this last NBA season.

Averaging 27.5 points, 8.6 rebounds and 9.1 assists per game, LeBron literally carried his team to the Finals for his eighth Finals appearance in a row. Now, when I say he carried his team, I mean he CARRIED them! During the 2018 playoffs, LeBron averages led the league in points per game (34) and playoff assists (198) and he had the best playoff player efficiency rating (32.2) all at the age of 33.  

There’s no doubt the man is a great basketball player, but what I find intriguing is that he is this generation’s best. Kobe Bryant is my favorite player, but I never got to see him truly become great because his prime was between 2000 and 2010, when I wasn’t following the NBA much at all.

However, with LeBron, I have gotten to witness him cement himself as one of the best players in history. His journey to greatness is one that I’ve found interesting, but his move to LA has chipped away at it.

If you look at other all-time greats like Kobe, Michael Jordan, Tim Duncan, Magic Johnson and Larry Bird, the one thing they all have in common is their legacy with their team.  As a sports fan, I see Lebron’s legacy as him playing in his home state, but this is now the second time he has chosen to leave Cleveland, making it harder and harder to pinpoint his legacy.

On the flip side of things, I, a Lakers fan, am psyched to have the best player on the planet right now on my team.

The Lakers are one of the most iconic and legendary teams in the league. They’ve produced more great players and great teams than any other franchise out there, but lately, they haven’t been so hot. Let’s face it, they haven’t had a winning record since the 2010-2011 season. However, this has not shaken my love for the Lakers, and with LeBron on the way, there is a new hope.

To break it down, there are two different halves of me when it comes to LeBron heading to the Lakers; the sports fan who is disappointed to see a great player lose some of his GOAT credits and the optimistic Laker fan who’s hoping LeBron can pull the historic franchise out of its slump.