LeBron James will not stand for your NBA jersey burning anymore

Ball Don't Lie

In an attempt to go viral, as the kids say, two people separately filmed themselves burning a couple Isaiah Thomas jerseys after the Boston Celtics traded their All-Star point guard for Cleveland Cavaliers counterpart Kyrie Irving on Tuesday. They apparent succeeded, because even LeBron James felt the need to address how incredibly idiotic it is to symbolically trash a player who had no say in the trade.

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Of course, many people did not burn No. 4 jerseys, All but two, really. So few, in fact, that LeBron might as well have personally called to tell them how dumb it is to film yourself burning the jersey of a guy who, when last he wore that uniform, gave his heart and soul to the Celtics, scoring 53 points with a bum hip and a busted mouth on his sister’s birthday two weeks after she died in a car crash.

Instead, he addressed it in a tweet-storm to his 37.8 million followers, many of whom will say to themselves, What is this about burning Isaiah Thomas jerseys? I gotta see that video. Hence, viral.

(For the record, I’m pretty sure one of the kids who burned his Thomas jersey was doing it as a joke, and the other kid’s mom was repeatedly saying, “We love you, Isaiah,” in the background of his video.)

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And, yes, people burned Gordon Hayward’s Utah Jazz jersey, too. Ex-teammate Rudy Gobert sang, “These hoes ain’t loyal,” on Hayward’s way out the door. Jazz GM Dennis Lindsey said, “There’s probably a few adjectives” to describe how he left. Local reporters and columnists also took issue with Hayward’s exit. That situation was different. Celtics forward Jaylen Brown, GM Danny Ainge and beat reporter Adam Himmelsbach didn’t bash Thomas after the trade. In fact, quite the opposite.

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Hayward’s departure was more like LeBron’s in 2010, except without the TV show to announce it and the parade to tell everyone how many titles he was going to win. People burned jerseys then, too. That was really where the jersey-burning started. So maybe James has been thinking about this for a while.

LeBron is right. Players have every right to change teams, and teams have every right to trade players. Fans also have every right to film themselves burning jerseys. We just don’t have to watch them do it.

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Ben Rohrbach is a contributor for Ball Don’t Lie and Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at rohrbach_ben@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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