When Lebron James announced that he was taking his talents to South Beach to join Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh on the Miami Heat, the trio of NBA stars assumed that they would not only be the biggest act in town but become international sensations. Instead after only 13 regular season games the Miami Heat organization is calling out fans for a lack of interest and asking that they (the fans) start proving they are deserving of the “talent” that is put out there on the floor.
In order to relay their message to the fans, the Miami Heat shared a video and letter directed at the fans on the team’s website. Besides being poorly executed (the video is atrocious and the letter self-serving), this was a horrible idea. I cannot think of a worse plan than blaming customers (fans) for the struggles of the company (Miami Heat organization). The only thing that this achieved was to further alienate fans and prove that the organization does not understand its fan base. Below is a copy of the letter.
Miami has never been a professional sports town (it took years for the community to embrace theNFL’s Miami Dolphins). The city is a hotbed for nightlife so it is not surprising that fans show up at games to “make an appearance” and then leave early to experience what else the city has to offer. As a fan of basketball, I can understand that the team hopes that fans will support them thick and thin but this approach to sparking interest was ill-timed and inappropriate. The NBA as a whole has struggled with maintaining the interest of fans as many feel the league has become filled with individuals only concerned about themselves and not the game. The Miami Heat’s actions only help confirm this sentiment.
As for the team’s new star, if Lebron James wanted to be the center of attention he should have stayed in Cleveland or gone to Chicago or New York where he would have been treated like NBA royalty. Since making his decision to leave the Cleveland Cavaliers, Lebron James’s new team has struggled to remain relevant. Currently they are tied for the 10th best record in the NBA and while it is a long season, it is obvious that things have not come as easily as “King James” had hoped.
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When Lebron’s career is over, he has hopes of being mentioned among the greatest but there is a there is a reason why there will never be another Michael Jordan. Proof in point, Jordan signed a 1 year contract worth more than $30 million with the Chicago Bulls in 1997 and it can easily be argued that this was a steal of a deal. During that season, Michael Jordan and the Bulls sold out every game both home and away and were must see TV for any basketball fan. In addition, the amount of merchandising revenue alone created from Jordan and the Bulls far exceeded his contract value.
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