A Bitter Cleveland Fan Responds to the Questions Asked in the new LeBron Rise commercial

26 10 2010

The wind let out of the sails
No update in months, epic fail
The blog was dead, covered in flies
“But still, like air, I rise.”

Consider me invigorated. There has been a lot of hype over this new LeBron commercial. Was it well done and even a little humorous? I don’t know. Well, maybe. A little.

But the guy asks a lot of questions in the 90 second video, and no one seems to actually address his questions.

Since I thought this was a little rude, I thought I might help LeBron out and give him the answers he was so desperately looking for:

LeBron James: What should I do?
Bitter Cleveland Fan:
Thats a little broad. Try again.

LBJ: Should I admit I made mistakes?
Oh, absolutely. Yes. You really should. But where to begin? Game 5? 6? The Decision? Its a tough call.

LBJ: Should I remind you I’ve done this before?
What? Stared at your high school’s trophy case? I’m not impressed.

LBJ: What should I do?
Again. Broad.

LBJ: Should I tell you how much fun we had?
It was fun at first, but you never finished the job. And as any guy can tell you: Blue Balls are NOT fun.

LBJ: Should I really believe I ruined my legacy?
Wipe that smirk off your face. You at the very least tainted it. You’ll never be considered in the conversation of Best Ever with MJ anymore (even Kobe for that matter). They stayed and won in the same place. Built a team around them. If you want to go to South Beach and have fun with your all-star team of friends, that is fine. I don’t care, really. Just don’t expect your legacy to remain what it once was, or seemed destined to be, that’s all.

LBJ: What should I do? What should I do? What should I do?
Holy crap. Stop.

LBJ: Should I get my tatoo removed?
This is actually a really good call. Either get it removed, or make an addition: have them change it to “CHOSEN 1/3.”

LBJ: Want to see me shiny new shoes? Should I just sell shoes?
I’d rather open a picture message from Brett Favre. Thanks, but no thanks.

LBJ: Should I tell you I am not a role model?
We know this because you’re eating a strawberry frosted donut on TV? That was the stupidest joke in the whole bit. Seriously though, it is not up to you whether or not you want to be a role model: you already are. It was up to you to be a good one, or a bad one.

LBJ: Should I tell you I’m a championship chaser?

LBJ: Should I be who you want me to be?
Cry me a river.

LBJ: Should I accept my role as “The Villain”?
This actually wouldn’t be a bad idea for you. Just make sure you choose a different nickname than “The Villain.” It’s taken.

LBJ: Maybe I should just… disappear?
I’m fine with it. But I’d settle if just your knee cartilage disappeared.

LBJ: Should I stop listening to my friends?
Yes. Absolutely. LRMR might be the worst marketing agency ever. I can promise you “The Debacle”, err… “The Decision” will live in infamy in marketing texts as a classic textbook case of the-worst-strategy-ever. Congratulations, Maverick.

LBJ: They’re my friends.
I get that. It’s just that they are stupid friends.

LBJ: Should I take up acting?
Should I let my publicist lead me to believe Don Johnson is still relevant? (thanks ktz).

LBJ: Should I read you a soulful poem?
I like mine better.

LBJ: Should we just clear the decks? Start over?
Sorry, what is done is done. People may think this commercial is clever, but they still think you’re a dick.

LBJ: What should I do? Should I be who you want me to be?
Enough with the pity party already, LeBron. You are free to play wherever you want to play. Seriously, I mean that. It’s not up to us where you wanted to play. It was up to you. Just don’t be salty or shocked that what you wanted doesn’t match up with the legacy you wanted.

You can determine your career, LeBron. But it is your fans that determine your legacy.

– Sam Toth


A Closer Look: Justin Masterson

21 05 2010

Time for another breakdown, the most enjoyable yet (which also means the longest). If you are looking for a quick read, put this on hold. But, when you are craving some baseball later today, load this guy up, sit down, concentrate, and enjoy yourself while you follow me through a jungle of ambiguity to a clearer view of Justin Masterson’s 2010 campaign.

Justin, how does your "xFIP" stack up?

This article begins with my boy Dave, the Super 7 Foundation’s 2010 ‘Best Young Chef’ award winner and fellow Lebrontourage columnist, asking me about Tribe starter Justin Masterson: “break him down Z. He K’s dudes but lets up too many hits. And, it’s like he doesn’t trust the fielders.” What’s Masterson’s deal, head case? Get ready for the most complicated statistics (mathematically and theoretically) we’ve used yet (I’ll ease them in) and let’s take a closer look.

Dave’s first observation is that Masterson “K’s dudes.” Indeed he does. At 9.63 K/9 he has the 9th highest rate of strike-outs for any starter in the bigs (min. 40 IP). Masterson is striking out over a batter an inning, which means strike-outs account for 1/3rd of the outs he gets. Thank God, because he isn’t getting many other guy’s out.

When guys aren’t striking out, most are getting on base. Masterson is allowing an average of 11.25 hits per 9 innings pitched (H/9). Which, confirms Dave’s 2nd observation- “dude let’s up too many hits.” Typically, you want your pitchers closer to 8 and hopefully more like 7 H/9. Read the rest of this entry »

A Closer Look: Austin Kearns

20 05 2010

One of the few points of optimism for the Cleveland Indians this year has been the play of Austin Kearns. Signed to a minor league contract, Kearns is making Shapiro look like a professional for the low risk/high reward signing. But, are we seeing Austin Kearns; or, is this just a flash in the pan? Let’s take a closer look.

If you combine Kearns’s 2003 and 2004 platoon abbreviated seasons as a young player in the bigs, his numbers from 2003-2007 give us four 450+ AB seasons of remarkably good data to compare his 2010 season to.

03-04: 146 GP, 24 HR, .247 AVG, .50 BB/K, 102 wRC+, .298 BABIP

05: 112 GP, 18 HR, .240 AVG, .45 BB/K, 107 wRC+, .281 BABIP

06: 150 GP, 24 HR, .264 AVG, .56 BB/K, 118 wRC+. .308 BABIP

07: 161 GP, 16 HR, .266 AVG, .67 BB/K, 107 wRC+, .299 BABIP

Making his average year something like: Read the rest of this entry »

We Are All Witnesses; Just Not To What We Had Hoped

14 05 2010

I feel like this is becoming a recurring theme here, but: I hope I’m wrong.

I desperately hope I’m wrong, but I just can’t shake the feeling that last night we were all “Witnesses” to the death of professional basketball in Cleveland.

We Were All Witnesses... To Game Five 😦

Maybe “death” is too strong a word. I do not think the Cavaliers will leave Cleveland. Perhaps the phrase “the plunge back to below-average-at-best-mediocrity” is better. Odd, it doesn’t make me feel all that better.

Whatever you want to call it, we witnessed it unfold at the end of Game Six. Read the rest of this entry »

Six Point Swing: How Game Five Turned From Bad to Franchise Derailing

12 05 2010

I hope LeBron James and the Cavaliers prove me wrong. I would want nothing more than them to win the next one in Boston, come back to Cleveland and win game seven for all those fans they disappointed tonight.

Hell, the Atlanta Hawks did it after losing game five at home to the Milwaukee Bucks. So there is still a chance, right?

But as optimistic as I like to be, I just cannot shake the feeling that there is a better chance of Spencer Pratt becoming a likable human being. (For those fortunate enough to be unfamiliar with Pratt, you’ve got a better chance of finding a monkey typing Hamlet.)

LeBron James and the Cavaliers played with little heart and even less regard to the hopes and dreams of city of Cleveland. They mailed it in this game. Gave up. And it was inexcusable.

This was a six point game at half time. Six points. At home. How were they not fired up to come out, play some dominant defense, take the lead and pump up the crowd? Six points was all it had to take.

What happens?

Six points — for the Celtics, courtesy of Ray Allen within the first 30 seconds to open the second half.

All it would have taken was a measly six points to get back into the game. Unfortunately, all it took was a measly six points to completely deflate the Cavaliers. Read the rest of this entry »

Cavs – I want some mo of Mo.

3 05 2010

With about 5 minutes left in the third quarter, the Cavs trailing by 11 and playing even worse, Cleveland needed a lift.

Enter Mo Williams.

After stealing an errant Rajon Rondo pass, Williams raced down the court with LeBron James to his left and Paul Pierce ahead ready to go up for a block. I don’t know about you, but as this play unfolded I was thinking: “Alley-oop to LeBron. Alley-oop to LeBron!” But Mo Williams had a different idea in mind. Completely disregarding the taller Pierce awaiting him near the basket, Mo Williams rose up and threw down a dunk, effectively posterizing Pierce.

It pumped up the crowd, it pumped up the team, it even pumped up Mo himself, who decided to go on a tear that third quarter by putting up 14 points. Most importantly, it sparked a Cavaliers comeback to beat Boston and take the series opener.

Actually even more importantly, it triggered one hilariously unintentional comedic response from Mike Brown. Seriously, Cheech and Chong could have come up with a response that sounded less stoned. Check out the dunk + Mike Brown reaction here:

Now when this play happened, I knew it was a big deal. But I didn’t grasp how big of a deal it was. Here are some cool tidbits about the Mo dunk:

  • It was only Mo Williams second career dunk. As in ever. As in he’s only dunked twice in the NBA. Ever! I couldn’t get over that. It’s also his first career dunk as a Cleveland Cavalier. It couldn’t have come in a better time.
  • Not only did the dunk feel like the turning point of the game, it literally was the turning point of the game. For proof, I’ll provide this little stat bubble, courtesy of ESPN.com:

Via ESPN.com: Mo Williams Dunk proves to be the turning point of Game 1

  • That little box really says it all. Before the dunk, the Cavs were shooting poorly, playing bad defense and were down 11. After the dunk, the Cavs played better offensively, defensively, and outscored the Celtics by 19.
  • Mo’s stand out performance in Game 1 wasn’t limited to one play either though. He played well throughout and put up a pretty solid statline: 20 pts, 5 rebs, 6 assists, 1 steal, and only 1 turnover.
  • Interesting note about Mo’s night: Zero. That’s the number of 3 pointers Mo Williams made in Game 1. That’s right. The three point shooting point guard had that big of an impact while going 0-3 from beyond the arc. Normally when Mo has a big night, he is on fire shooting threes. Saturday night, he found other ways to do it. Impressive.
  • Now, I normally could care less about the +/- statistic, but Mo had an impressive +23 on the night. I couldn’t ignore that. It was more than double the second highest +/- number (Antawn Jamison had +11), and was more than triple of LeBron (+7)!

In my Round One in Review, I wrote that Mo Williams needed to step it up. In Game 1 against Boston, he answered the call. He didn’t just step it up, he bought a stairmaster.