By Andrew Porter
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – You can love Lebron James, or you can hate Lebron James. Either way, you’ve got to appreciate his greatness.
I consider myself a big LeBron fan, and sometimes I even have inner struggles deciding if I actually ‘like’ LeBron the person. He can be obnoxious and self-righteous, and I understand why that bothers some people. But for me, what he does on the court—-his knowledge of the game, his unselfishness, the way his teammates and opponents speak about him, and his sheer athletic greatness, is enough for me to root for the guy.
I appreciate and understand, as a true fan of the game of basketball (one of, maybe the, greatest game ever invented—shout out to my boy James Naismith!), that I may never, ever, ever get to watch someone play basketball as well as LeBron James. I caught the back-end of Michael Jordan’s career (I was born in 1990), I’ve followed Kobe Bryant’s career, and I worshiped Allen Iverson, among others, but what James does on the court is unprecedented.
This year King James goes for three straight MVP’s (five out of the last six) and three straight NBA titles. Think about that for a second. Let that sink in.
Three straight MVP’s and three straight championships at the highest level of basketball on the planet. Only Wilt Chamberlin, Bill Russell, and Larry Bird have won three straight MVP’s, and only Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (6), Russell (5) and Michael Jordan (5) have five or more MVP’s.
And maybe the most intriguing part of this whole run of eminence, is LeBron is only 28 years old, entering his 11th NBA season.
You can give me the “league is weak” argument, or “his team is stacked” argument, or “he choked in Cleveland” argument, or “he doesn’t have the killer instinct” argument, but just save it. I’ve heard them all and I’m not even listening anymore. You’re just being a typical LeBron hater, which is fine, but as a hater you still should call it how it is.
Hate him all you want, but if you call yourself a true basketball fan, at the very least, you have to appreciate his greatness.
Andrew Porter is the Audio Roadshow Coordinator for SportsRadio WIP, editor and writer for The School Philly, and a contributing sports blogger for CBS Philly. You can follow him on Twitter @And_Porter.