Inside the wacky world of free agent recruiting websites

Ten years ago, we thought computers were going to blow up the world because of Y2K. A few things have changed since then, because we now use computers to recruit free agents to our favorite teams. I guess that's progress.

As Ryan Corazza of ESPN chronicled so beautifully, the world of NBA free agency websites is pretty interesting. Or, depending on the site, very weird. For instance, look at Brandon George, founder of In LeBron We Trust, who has waxed his chest and brushed his teeth with hot sauce in a quest to keep LeBron in Cleveland.

"I'm not just doing these stunts to get attention," George said. "I'm doing it because I really genuinely love the Cavs. And through that, I love LeBron.

"It's been unexpectedly positive. I thought people might think I'm kind of crazy, but people are just encouraged and inspired by it."

No duh, it's inspiring. Who wouldn't love a guy who's down to go bare-chested for the sake of LeBron James(notes)? That's a bold move for anyone to make and it'll probably be very effective in the Great LeBron Chase of 2010.

But not if A.J. Barthold, the guy behind Send LeBron to Chicago, has anything to say about it.

"I've always had the idea of LeBron playing on the Bulls. I've always wanted it to happen. I'd like him to at least think about it. I'd like him to at least come across the site sometime. It was one of those things where I said to myself, 'I need to try it, because I'll be kicking myself later if I don't.'"

I'm with you, A.J., though I never would have kicked you. If Cleveland's going to have a LeBron-centric web presence, then why shouldn't Chicago? Consider that void filled.

And while a couple of fans using the Internet to get the best basketball player in the NBA to play for their team isn't something that could be fathomed even five years ago, it's not that surprising in this day and age. The real eyebrow-raiser is the Miami Heat's We Want Wade. Yep, it's a fan site created by the team for a player they currently employ, which seems a bit odd to me since they technically "have Wade."

But hey, it did it's job because Dwyane Wade(notes) is impressed, telling the Associated Press that he "thought it was hilarious" and that he "appreciated it." Who knows if it'll work, but at least it got Wade's attention, which is precisely 29 percent of the battle.

In semi-related news, with no games going on Wednesday night, I spent my entire evening designing, a website dedicated to the Chicago Bulls re-signing Brad Miller(notes). You guys should totally sign the online petition. Those things always work.

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