With fans like this who needs LeBron James.
Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert has not had a good week. He’s seen his franchise player leave town, been accused of having a slave owner’s mentality, and been hit with a $100,000 fine. It’s enough to make a normal man crack.
What he does have though is the support of the city his basketball team represents.
Since his comments and letter criticizing his former star for leaving town the owner has received an impressive amount of support in the form of thousands of emails and phone calls. Some have even offered to help pay the fine that NBA commissioner David Stern recently imposed.
Gilbert has had this to say in response to the response he has had from the Cavalier faithful:
“The humbling offer by so many is another reflection of the strength of Cavs fans and the people who live and work in this region and are always the first to step up and have each other’s back.” (ESPN)
I can’t say that I blame the owner of the Cavs and the fans in Cleveland at all. As a lifelong Dallas Cowboy fan I was more than just mad when Tom Landry was fired by Jerry Jones; I was very upset when Hershel Walker was traded shortly after Jimmy Johnson took over. When Emmitt Smith became a Cardinal I thought that everything was wrong with the football world.
In time I began to realize something that is a painful but all too relevant truth about professional sports—there a business. The bad thing about business is that when push comes to shove the all mighty green dollar will win out in the end. It’s the responsibility of guys like Gilbert and Jones to field the best team they possibly can for as long as they can. At the same time it is the responsibility of guys like James, Smith, and every other veteran player traded before they retired to play as long as the market allows them to.
Fans like you and me sit on our couches and buy tickets to games so that we can watch these guys. We grow attached to these guys. We begin to associate with these guys that take up one day a week every fall for about five months. When they leave we get upset.
It’s all understandable. We should get upset, but at the same time we have to realize that this game (whatever it is) is a business to the owners and guys that play the game. For us it’s fun; for them its work. Just like you and I would quit out jobs for a hefty raise we should not expect them to do any different.
Personally, I’m a Rocket fan so I could really care less what LeBron, Dan Gilbert, or what anyone else does, but I do love the dedication the Cav fans have. I understand and appreciate their pain, but in the end the game must go on.
Beer: Blonde Bombshell from the Indigo Imp Brewery in Cleveland, OH- in honor of a friend of mine, one of the recently rejected Cavalier fans (who happens to be a blonde bombshell herself) I figured it was only appropriate to review this beer.
After a few of these, the 6.2%ABV might help dull the pain from the kick in the gut that LeBron gave Cav fans; with such an easy, drinkable taste it will not be hard to get a few down quick. Those imps at the brewery in Cleveland concocted a good mix of malts and hops to give this beer a well-balanced character. I’m not 100% positive, but I think I tasted a hint of a nutty, banana finish to it as well.