September 29, 2010
LeBron James(notes) and humility aren't in the same sentence very often, unless that sentence is about James not having any humility. (Or, I guess, if it is the preceding sentence which just breaks down how rarely people consider LeBron James to be modest.) This isn't unheard of in professional sports, obviously, but hosting your own one-hour show about your free-agency decision kind of is. Yes, LeBron James is pretty impressed with himself, but you would be too if everyone had been telling you that you were great since you were 16.
However, just because LeBron James isn't usually humble, doesn't mean he can't occasionally be self-effacing. He's a human after y'all, and we tend to be full of contradictions. For instance, self-assured though he may be, even LeBron isn't expecting a legendary season this year. From the Miami Herald's Barry Jackson:
When Pat Riley met with LeBron James to pitch him on joining the Heat, Riley said James "sort of lit up and said, `That would be great if I didn't have to score,' that he could be maybe the first since Oscar Robertson to be a triple-double guy.''
Although Heat swingman Mike Miller(notes) said it's "doable'' and ESPN's Jalen Rose said "he could pull it off if he chose,'' James is skeptical about averaging a triple-double. "Is it realistic? It's so tough in this day and age,'' James said this week. "I look up to Big O so much to be able to do that. Unbelievable feat. I don't believe it will ever be matched. It's very intriguing. You would love to make history, but it's not a goal of mine. My goal is to be a triple threat, not to average a triple-double. I know I can do that.''
That's right — Mr. "I Could Win the Scoring Title Every Single Year If I Wanted To" admitted he isn't going to be the second person ever to average a triple-double for the season. He doesn't even think anyone is going to do it. That's a pretty honest assessment of an amazing record.
Furthermore, he's probably right. In the history of the NBA, Magic Johnson is the only guy besides Big O to even come close to averaging a triple-double for a season and even he only came close once. Just think about how impressed the basketball world was when Rajon Rondo(notes) averaged a trip-dub against the Bulls in the 2009 playoffs, and that was only for seven games. It's almost impossible and if LeBron doesn't even think he can do it — and he's obviously the best candidate for the task — then maybe no one ever will.
Then again, this could be a smokescreen and LeBron is wholeheartedly gunning for those stats. He's got the skills to make it happen and his teammates would definitely support his mission. It's not likely, but most people would have said the same thing last year about that whole television special thing.