Earlier this week, I saw the first reference to the LeBron James “Free Agency Summer Jam” or whatever it’s being called.
Can we add a couple musical acts for this hour-long special? Maybe find someone that Elton John hasn’t played with yet, or let Ron Artest sing his “Champion” song?
Seriously, it’s great PR and a spectacle to end the weeks, nay, months of rumor, conjecture or speculation. And, we’ll be the better for it. The NBA has been in the news for an extra month beyond the end of the Finals – and I can just see David Stern sitting at his desk, fingers extended in a Montgomery Burnsian-like fashion with an “Excellent” muttered under his breath for good measure.
Roger Goodell has to have mixed feelings. He doesn’t have the full media scrutiny of the media during the recent rage of arrests. Unfortunately, he also doesn’t have the media frenzy that normally surrounds the final weeks heading into training camp.
Major League Baseball has Strasburg and the wonderful world of trading card sales ($20K, anyone?). The All-Star Game is in the news only because of the usual litany of omissions and the talking heads getting incensed over perceived snubs.
I get that you want to stand up for the local pitcher or hitter that was omitted, but let’s at least make some cohesive, intelligent arguments to support your candidate. Remember, the rosters are put together with several factors in mind. You have the NATIONWIDE TV audience, the people in the park, the players, executives, commissioner and coaches/manager to consider. Pure stat guys (I like my numbers, but let’s not kid ourselves) are going nuts about strikeout totals and such, but take the full picture into account.
But, I digress.
I won’t be watching Thursday’s special. I figure I’ll be more entertained by the collection of comedians (real and self-appointed), scribes, pundits and friends that make up my Twitter list (I’m @swollendome, for those interested) than with the elimination chamber or whatever the hell is going on during that hour.
I would be intrigued to see the GMs or owners or some team representative in some sort of competition, with the last man standing declared the victor of James’ services … as he sat on a throne with assorted capes, sceptres and crowns in the various team colors decorating the walls.
I joked on the daily podcast that I do with John Halpin that James and his team should have worked with Dana White to present a solid UFC undercard.
Or, let’s take fighting to another level. Resurrect the “Living In America”-type entrance for James and his posse like that used by Carl Weathers before he was bludgeoned by Drago in Rocky IV. I know that James Brown isn’t availab, RIP, but we can probably work up a re-mixed version of the song and add a Lil’ Jon “Yeahh!” or something.
Man, to be a producer for a day …
Instead, I’ll be watching “Bad Lieutenant” (the Harvey Keitel version) and watching the Ubaldo-Carpenter battle on the DVR. I’ll let @sportsguy33, @darrenrovell1, @adamcarolla or @PetrosandMoney fill in the team abbreviation.
I’ll have plenty of time to break down the teams as they get assembled before tip-off of the new season.
I’m not spreading my bets around like most. Despite the late money moving toward NY (literally, per the movement of stock prices on Wednesday), I still believe that James stays in Cleveland.
Still, nothing would surprise me at this point.
Wake me when it’s over.