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Cleveland Paper Has Bitter Front Page

The news of  Lebron James’ decision to leave the Cleveland Cavaliers and head for the Miami Heat is still fresh in the minds of every sports fan–especially if you live in Cleveland. The front page of the Cleveland Plain Dealer on Friday morning shows just how bitter the fans and people of Cleveland are about James’ decision.

Pay close attention to the little arrow pointing to James’ hand. I don’t blame the people of Cleveland for being bitter, although Dan Gilbert could have handled it a little better. One of the best things about their city just decided to publicly humiliate them and leave for sunny South Beach. Of course they’re upset. Check out the cover of the Cleveland Plain Dealer the day LeBron announced he was leaving:

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Mo Williams Chimes in on LeBron

Mo Williams has decided to share his thoughts about LeBron James‘ departure from Cleveland via Twitter — the NBA’s favorite communication medium.  I have to say, it’s refreshing to see a member of the Cavs organization react somewhat rationally to the situation.  That certainly wasn’t the case with Cleveland owner Dan Gilbert, as we all know after reading his instant classic of a letter to the fans.  We didn’t see it from their jersey-burning fans either, who are understandably upset.  Here’s Mo Williams’ reaction to LeBron James signing with the Heat, courtesy of The Sporting Blog:

Well f—, I gotta be honest. I’m sick as a dog. I feel like my heart has been pulled out. But I’m happy for my friend. S———

The only thing, and I mean the only thing I disagree with is…. If he knew somewhere else was the destination. He should have spared cle On national tv. But this was history so we might not understand the magnitude today. But when we look back on this, we might not Never see this again.

I know we all angry, mad, disappointed. But remember that’s a triple double walking. Let’s pray he have a change of heart 2nite. It is the The night of the unexpected. Who am I kidding

I’m still can’t believe he gone y’all. 4real no bs. I think we all took it for granted and thought it was a nobrainer and he was resighning

The person that I feel most sorry for is mike brown. He is a really good coach.

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Cavs Owner Completely Rips LeBron

If it’s any consolation to Cleveland Cavaliers fans, their team owner is just as angry as they are and not afraid to show it.  In an open letter to Cavs fans, majority owner Dan Gilbert called out LeBron James for skipping town.  Gilbert even went so far as to say that his actions are a “cowardly betrayal.”  Here in the sports blogging business, we tend to write with our emotions pretty frequently.  I’m not sure that’s ever something the majority owner of an NBA franchise should do.

However — writing in a font that is clearly attempting to prove to fans that he’s just an ordinary guy –  Gilbert did exactly that.  Mark Cuban has done some insane, over-the-top things in his time as Dallas Mavericks owner and I don’t recall any of it being this harsh.  Gilbert is worse than the jersey burners.  I encourage you to read the entire letter, but I’ve picked out some of the more intense parts.  Let’s analyze them as we go, shall we?

As you now know, our former hero, who grew up in the very region that he deserted this evening, is no longer a Cleveland Cavalier.

This was announced with a several day, narcissistic, self-promotional build-up culminating with a national TV special of his “decision” unlike anything ever “witnessed” in the history of sports and probably the history of entertainment.

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Clever Music Video Made By…Heat Fans?

As Cleveland Cavaliers fans begin the jersey burning and Miami Heat fans continue to celebrate in South Beach, I’ve come across a somewhat funny music video that I don’t fully understand. I’m guessing these are Heat fans or just anti-Cleveland people, but if that’s the case I don’t really understand where this woman got a hold of a Delonte West jersey on such short notice. I’ll let you see the video before passing judgment. I had to watch it a few times. Here are what I believe to be Heat fans making their own music video about LeBron James leaving Cleveland to the tune of Beyonce’s “Single Ladies”:

Like I said, I’m pretty sure these aren’t LeBron/Cavs fans but I don’t know where the jersey came from so quickly. In any event, I thought the whole, “If you like it then you shoulda put a ring on it” bit was pretty clever if they’re saying the Cavs should have put a ring on LeBron’s finger if they wanted him to stay. Whatever, I’m really confused. I may or may not have forgotten why I laughed when I saw this. Hope it makes sense for you.

Video Credit: Twitter user msclace

Miami Wastes No Time Partying

Imagine being a long-time Miami Heat fan? Three years ago, when the Celtics landed Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen in one off-season I thought I died and went to heaven. Neither of those two players was ever really in the discussion of best players in the NBA. KG would probably get a few votes in his prime, but nothing overwhelming.

Heat fans have seen their team transfer from a first round playoff loser to a roster that boasts two of the best four players in the NBA. Right now I’m going to say Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Kevin Durant, and Dwyane Wade are the four best in no particular order. Sure, you can dissect that statement from a number of different angles, but throw Chris Bosh — arguably the best power forward in the game — into the mix and fans in South Beach have more to celebrate over than any fan base has ever had in an NBA off-season. They’ve already begun doing just that while Cavs fans are off burning their LeBron jerseys. Check out this video of fans in South Beach celebrating LeBron James decision to join the Miami Heat:

Video Credit: Twitter user Mikey on FYRE

Cavs Fans Burn LeBron’s Jersey

Seven years, six All-Star games, back-to-back MVPs, a scoring title, a finals appearance, and two 60-win seasons, and this is how the Cavs fans thank LeBron James? Of course it is — they’re the same bunch that booed the Cavs during the playoffs. Why would expect anything other than seeing them burn his jersey upon hearing that he’s leaving Cleveland for the Miami Heat? Here’s one of the many videos of Cavs fans burning LeBron’s jersey:

Typical ungrateful, insensible fans who don’t appreciate what they had. Hope they enjoyed those 60-win seasons because they might not win half that amount now.

Video Credit: YouTube user jiedlin

Tax Laws Mean LeBron Could Make More Money in Miami

Sadly, it’s beginning to look more and more like Stephen A. Smith could end up being right. Although it was probably a complete guess and a fast way for him to create a buzz, we just might have to listen to him saying, “I told you so” on every radio show and TV station that will have him in the sporting world.

When LeBron James says things like, “It’s not about the money,” he’s really not lying.  Of course he wants to make as much money as possible.  He just knows that no matter where he plays he’s going to be able to do that, therefore there’s no need to concern himself with it.  All this talk of LeBron, Chris Bosh, and Dwyane Wade splitting cash really doesn’t matter in the long run because he’s going to make an astronomical amount of dough wherever he ends up.

When we think about contracts and max deals and salary cap rules in the NBA, there’s so much that we’re leaving out.  Darren Rovell of CNBC gave us a perfect example of what I’m talking about with a discussion about state income taxes and how they’ll factor into how much money LeBron makes at the end of the day.  Here’s Rovell’s breakdown, courtesy of Pro Basketball Talk:

Playing in Cleveland, LeBron would face a state income tax of 5.925 percent, plus a Cleveland city tax of two percent.

Over the first five years of a new contract with Cleveland, James would give back $3,953,060 combined to the state and city for the 41 games each season he’d play at home. But James would have to pay none of that for home games in Miami since Florida doesn’t have an income tax.

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