Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert’s infamous 2010 rebuttal to LeBron James’ move to Miami made the move from meme to legend within the course of an evening. If you scour Twitter during any part of the 2014 machinations that led up to James’ eventual return to Cleveland, jokes about the Comic Sans font Gilbert used to pen the embarrassing diatribe abounded. Even news that the letter still exited on the Cleveland Cavaliers’ official website until recently, when the Cavs seemed to pull ahead of the aging Miami Heat as favorites to land James, was met with more than a few smirking responses online.
Miami Heat owner Micky Arison is no stranger to putting his foot in his mouth over the internet, but his Twitter response to James’ move back to Northern Ohio was classy and dignified in 140 characters or less.
I am shocked & disappointed in today's news. However I will never forget what Lebron brought us for 4 years. Thanks for memories @KingJames— Micky Arison (@MickyArison) July 11, 2014
Even if you don’t agree with Twitter’s new font changes, that’s a tweet well-typed.
LeBron James is not from Miami. He’s technically not really from Cleveland, either, but the chance to thrill fans in Northern Ohio all over again was too strong to pass up. That’s an understandable decision, in lower case letters, one that was delivered without the gut-punch of a televised special in front of a preening Jim Gray, rather one that was delivered in a cogent essay as told to one of the great NBA scribes of all time: Sports Illustrated’s Lee Jenkins.
A James championship in Cleveland is no sure thing, even though the Cavaliers boasted one of the NBA’s most enviable young cores even prior to bringing in LeBron. Kyrie Irving will have to learn to play off the ball, Dion Waiters will have to shore up his shot selection, Anthony Bennett has to prove that he can contribute on an NBA level (much less live up to the promise that a top overall draft pick usually provides), and Andrew Wiggins has anything and everything to learn about the pro game. Wiggins is a full decade younger than LeBron, who chose a “win later” team in Cleveland over a “win now” squad somewhere else.
Arison understands this, and as someone who has had the pleasure of getting to go to five NBA Finals in the last eight years, he’s mindful of what James’ surprisingly-short tenure in Miami has given him.
Now, if Dwyane Wade decides to leave, and Arison reaches his breaking point, Twitter better look out …
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