LeBron James and Chicago a Great Mix
Let me start out by saying yes, this is a little biased. I’m a Bulls fan from Chicago, but there are plenty of reasons why LeBron James would be happy here running with the Chicago Bulls. Free agency begins at midnight on Thursday and the biggest question is where The King will sign. I say it should be Chicago.
A few weeks ago I made the prediction that Tom Izzo would leave Michigan State and that LeBron would be staying in Cleveland. Well, I was wrong. With Izzo’s decision to stay, I think it’s obvious that King James isn’t staying with the Cleveland Cavaliers. So here’s why I think that LeBron would be happy in the Windy City:
1. The talent is already here: Despite the Bulls’ mediocre season, they do have a very talented bench. Derrick Rose will be a superstar and I believe would compliment LeBron quite well. Unlike other “face of the franchise” players, Rose isn’t a ball hog. Although Rose won’t be directly in the spotlight with The King around, they would make an almost unstoppable combination on the floor.
2. LeBron can bring a friend: By trading Kirk Hinrich and their first-round pick last week to the Wizards, the Bulls cleared enough cap space for not only LeBron but another superstar. That seems pretty appealing to me. Even though Chris Bosh has said he wants to be “the man” on his team, the Bulls would have room to add both star players.
3. Michael Jordan is an inspiration: Michael Jordan’s shadow may be everywhere in Chicago, but I don’t see that as a bad thing. For LeBron, I would see all the championship banners hanging in the United Center as motivation, not intimidation. Plus, no matter where he goes, Jordan’s six titles will serve as a measuring stick anyways. If The King comes to Chicago he will have a better picture of what that greatness looks like.
4. Joakim Noah is your friend: Joakim Noah may talk LeBron smack, but he has proven himself to be a rising star and he would be a good teammate. Though he sat out for 18 games with plantar fasciitis, Noah averaged career highs with 10.7 points and 11.0 rebounds, resulting in 28 double-doubles. He may have been considered for most improved player of the year if he hadn’t missed almost a quarter of the season. And even James had positive things to say about Noah during the playoffs:
“I’ve always respected him as a player. His energy level, and he has continued to improve. He’s very athletic, very long. Around the basket, if a shot goes up and you don’t get a body on him, he’s able to tip home shots. I knew he was going to be effective” [in the series].
5. There’s a new coach: Former Bulls head coach Vinny Del Negro got the ax and opened the door for a new coach — Tom Thibodeau. Thibodeau was the Associate Head Coach for the Boston Celtics. He is known for his defensive style of coaching, something I believe that the Cavs lacked. The only downside of the new head coach is his lack of experience. For LeBron, the fact that Thibodeau has never been a head coach may greatly effect his decision.
It all goes back to the “Letter from Rose and Noah” that Bill Simmons wrote. The Bulls are a talented young team that can give LeBron exactly what he wants — a championship. And not just one, but multiple titles. We won’t know what his decision is until Thursday at the earliest. All I can say is that LeBron, you have the best shot of winning in Chicago. Plus, you know you already look good in red.