I think it is safe to say that this offseason has been absolutely INSANE. Today with the bombshell news of Kyrie Iriving asking for a trade from the Cleveland Cavaliers only furthers the craziness that is this offseason.
Ever since Lebron made “The Decision” in 2010, NBA free agency has been the hottest, wildest and most talked about offseason in any sport. “The Decision” really did kick these wild moves off. Lebron has shaped the NBA and influenced players to express themselves and flex their muscles empowering them to exert their power and influence. Lebron took the matter into his own hands in 2010 while the entire NBA world sat on pins and needles awaiting him to announce where he would play his next seasons. The entire NBA world stopped on that night. When Lebron announced that he would be “taking his talents to South Beach.” The collective NBA world gasped as the “Chosen One,” the Akron kid was actually leaving his home to play for the Miami Heat. The world was stunned and the opinions began to fly around.
Fast-forward 5 years to the summer of 2015 and the shocking news that Deandre Jordan would join the Dallas Mavericks on a four-year contract. The deal was as good as done, until the Clippers caught wind of it. Doc Rivers, Chris Paul, and Blake Griffin, among others came to Deandre Jordan’s Houston home. Deandre had expressed his doubts and concerns to his soon-to-be ex-teammates and they effectively locked him down in the house until he signed a deal to return to the Clippers, rejecting the Mavericks offer that was previously agreed to. And this was only part of the fun. The Twitter emoji war between the Clipper and the Mavericks players was the true fun. Chandler Parsons had the plane tweet, indicating he was en route to recruit Jordan. Then 3 days Later, J.J. Redick had the car emoji, followed by Blake Griffin’s plane emoji. They were going back and forth, and then the entire NBA got involved. Kobe tweeted 5 trophies with a snooze emoji, it was the most entertaining thing I had seen in a long time, and all thanks to these amazing moves, and the emergence of social media.
The very next season, July 4th. Everyone wakes up to yet another July, free agent bombshell. Kevin Durant decided to leave the Oklahoma City Thunder and join the 73-win Golden State Warriors. Who had just come off back-to-back finals appearances. The backlash was white hot. Nobody could appreciate that a man did what was best for him at that point in his life. Constant ridicule for being weak and a coward, not loyal, soft. Any bad word you could think of was probably spoken about Kevin Durant. But think back, Lebron made this possible, with his “decision” he empowered players to do what is best for them. I understand that the two situations were different but the principle was the same.
And now we are up to date, and this offseason might be the wildest of them all. With Paul George and Jimmy Butler both heading to the western conference, and the Cavaliers firing their GM seemingly right before they were going to trade for one of those players, and now Kyrie asking for a trade after coming off three straight finals appearances… I’m speechless. Not to mention Phil Jackson being fired and the whole Carmelo situation. Chris Paul gets traded. I could keep going.
But anyway, Kyrie supposedly wants to be more of the focal point on a team and doesn’t want to play with Lebron anymore?? That just doesn’t make sense, Lebron makes everyone’s job so much easier. And two years ago when they won the championship many made the case that Kyrie should have been the MVP for making that shot. Not to mention the fact that if the Cavaliers ever lost a game, Lebron is the one that takes the blame, not Kyrie. I just don’t understand why you would want to leave, but hey, to each their own. I won’t be the one to stop him, as a Lakers fan this is exactly what I want to see, the Cavs dismantle, bringing Lebron ever closer to coming to the Lakers. All of this focus on the offseason and the changing of powers in the NBA stems back to “The Decision,” the offseason has become a spectacle, and I’m here for all of it.
Every single year as sad as I am after the NBA season is over it is always short-lived thanks to the twists and turn and wild drama that the offseason provides every year. It is must-watch TV and news. I cannot get enough of it, this kind of drama and pettiness is stuff that is on reality TV, or that is scripted in shows. That is what makes it so great, it is so nuts that it seems like it should be scripted, but it is 100% real life, and the reactions to said decisions are seen immediately, especially in today’s age of social media. Personally, I hope that this kind of wild and craziness happens every year, and with next year’s huge free-agent class, it will be another one for the books.