The King is back – where he belongs, in Northeast Ohio.
Friday afternoon’s announcement that LeBron James was returning to the Cleveland Cavaliers was Earth-shattering, but it really should not have come as a surprise. In fact, the only reason it was a shock was because of the inept and biased reporting at ESPN, which did everything in its’ power to belittle the Cleveland franchise. Every piece of evidence that LeBron wanted to return to the Cavs was met with an avalanche of attacks.
This, coupled with the “we’re used to crushing disappointment” attitude that we Clevelanders have grown accustomed to, were the biggest reasons that doubt crept in as The Decision 2.0 was being made.
Me? Never had a doubt. Read More
You know you’ve hit it big when your own article becomes a mere initial-ism, and of course I am the one that did it so heap the praise here! Sometimes writing Rumblin’, Stumblin’, Bumblin’ can be a chore, and sometimes . . . people make it too darn easy! Let’s get rollin’ by catching up with some Buckeyes who have been going through their first OTA workouts with their respective teams. Let’s get going with the good and great!
I honestly probably haven’t wrote about Ryan Shazier here very much and I am baffled as to why. The only answer I could come up with is how much a did write about Carlos Hyde during the good this past season. Shazier is making some noise and already giving a good indication as to why the Steelers drafted him where they did. Fact is, he would have been taken in the next two picks as well.
The new #50 for the black and gold has settled in with a group that needed some immediate help at LB and that’s exactly what they’re getting. During the first day of OTA’s he was thrust into the ones and met up with Maurkice Pouncey and they had some words and a good little tussle. The direction he received was to maybe bring it down a notch and become a sponge. Learn as much as you can learn it get better. Shazier admits he has a long way to go but is enjoying the process already.
It was good going out there learning with the older guys, trying to get my feet wet,” Shazier said. “I feel like I did a pretty good job. I have to do a little better communicating, calling out some of the stuff and just talking in general. I did a pretty good job today. I just have to learn and do better. I just got to keep showing the coaches I know what I’m doing and I know this defense and I can go out there and play.
Shazier will find himself in a good position to contribute as a rookie and maybe start and become a ROTY candidate, he is in the right place to do it. He will continue to do as he has done in scarlet and gray, and will be the pride of the Buckeyes which several have done in Pittsburgh. Read More
Well, the first holiday weekend of the summer is soon upon us. Memorial Day reminds us of those who gave the ultimate sacrifice, and also that there are still people who savor their Constitutional right to be wrong. Words matter, people. At any rate, today’s tune is just a little something appropriately mournful and full of the promise that fills the coming months.
Another week rolls on toward the start of camp as the “dead period” continues to trudge forward with it. That doesn’t mean we don’t have Buckeye sports items/thingy’s to talk about. And what are the Cleveland Cavaliers going to do now that they have the first pick in the NBA’s draft lottery for the second time in three years? It’s Wednesday, let’s rumble!
Keep it quiet
Admittedly, it makes it hard on those of us who blog about Buckeye sports when we hit a lull in the action. The period we are in now, basically from the end of the NCAA basketball tournament to the opening of Urban Meyer’s second fall camp is without a doubt the most, well, to be honest, boring time of the year. There’s baseball on campus, I’m sure some other non revenue sports that deserve our attention as well, but the big two (the football and basketball programs) are in hibernation mode waiting to get cranked back up.
For the football program this has traditionally been a “danger zone” of sorts. Last year’s dead period was highlighted by Jake Stoneburner and Jack Mewhort being chased by police in Shawnee Hills and upon being caught being arrested for obstructing official business (whatever that means) when they were (allegedly) urinating between two buildings at a golf tournament. Remember that? Fun times.
Who could ever forget the saga of the summer of 1998: Will Andy Katzenmoyer pass his golf and AIDS awareness classes to be eligible for that falls season? (side note: A season that started with a 34-17 season whipping on West Virginia in Morgantown, someone remind Ben Nesselroad of that night for me!)
The “Big Kat” story leads us to our first no-no of the 2013 dead period…
Notre Dame quarterbacks
For the second year in a row dead period mischief has been kicked off by Notre Dame quarterbacks.
Last season returning starter Tommy Rees was arrested after fleeing a party that was being broken up by police. After being caught and pepper sprayed, Rees was charged with two counts of resisting law enforcement and one count each of battery and illegal consumption of alcohol by a minor. Rees received a crushing one game suspension.
Must have been some party! Read More
U will see me in the NBA I promise u that…..
When David Lighty fell off the NBA draft board late last week, it was more than just a surprise to Buckeye fans. For four years, we watched this gritty defender frustrate offensive talent completely out of their games.
For the past two seasons, we’ve seen him step up and be the leader of some of the best young talent in the nation. In a down year for draft talent, it seemed inevitable that the Cleveland native would be selected for his intangibles that you can’t really teach.
But when the hometown Cavs passed over him with the 24th pick in the second round, the realization that the NBA covets promise over character and accomplishment sunk in.
Hypothetical scenario: Jim Tressel’s contract with Ohio State is set to expire, and he elects not to sign an extension. Rather, he decides to “test the waters” and look at other opportunities on the college football landscape. After rampant speculation about his leanings, Tressel finally calls a press conference (obviously televised on ESPN) to inform the public that he has decided to take his coaching prowess to that state up north, which he feels will be a better fit for him as he continues his coaching career.
While the above-outlined scenario is a poor parallel to the Lebron James fiasco, not to mention utterly absurd, it is the only parallel that comes to mind as a Columbus resident, where Ohio State football is our featured sport, and an Ohio State fan, where Tressel is our most beloved figure. Being outside the immediate Cleveland area and only a casual observer of Cavs basketball, assessment of the James situation can be done without the emotional involvement, and a number of questions arise related to the furor he has caused.
While I understand and subscribe to the idea that an individual has the right to choose where they work, it seems that Cavs fans also understand this angle. The fact that James chose to play in another city is not the issue. Rather, it is the manner in which he communicated his decision that is irksome to so many. However, are there underlying factors at play here that make it so un-palatable?
First, was James’ conduct in Cleveland already questionable, making the announcement the proverbial “cherry on top?” Probably not. One can easily find a variety of links about his work in the community which, while not uncommon among professional athletes, does represent some consciousness of important issues outside of sports. Furthermore, the primary “scandals” that come to mind related to James are his acknowledgment that he was not well informed about the situation in Darfur and his directive to confiscate video of himself being dunked on at one of his basketball camps. Contrast this with any number of stories about professional athletes being in trouble with the law, and the criticisms of James may take on a bit of perspective.
Second, does the fact that James chose Miami make it worse? Again, the manner of communication rather than the decision to relocate is the key issue, but would the press conference (well, make that awkwardly staged-interview) have seemed more legitimate somehow if James had said “I’m going to New York” instead of “I’m taking my game to South Beach?” The NBA greats are now coming out to criticize James’ decision, and perhaps it is especially bothersome to Cavs fans that all the hype only led up to an announcement that James would be going to sunny Miami to hang with his friends. Maybe the words “New York City” would have made the announcement seem more appropriate by creating an impression that James wasn’t in it just for fun, but rather was using a big stage as a prelude to playing on the biggest stage in the foremost of sports cities.
To come full circle, another hypothetical scenario for consideration: It’s 2010, James and the Cavs have emerged victorious from a hard-fought NBA Championship series against the Los Angeles Lakers, bringing Cleveland its first NBA title. Several weeks later, after a ridiculous amount of hype, James announces his decision to leave Cleveland for Miami on a one-hour ESPN special titled “The Decision.” Given the different outcome in the playoffs, does this make things different? Is the rage replaced with gratitude? If Dwyane Wade was the athlete in question – same hype, same show, but Wade is coming to Cleveland to play with James – does Miami have the same reaction considering that Wade won a championship in Miami? Probably not. Then again, Miami is a different animal than Cleveland.
The point is this: From a non-Cavs fan perspective, it seems that much of the angst is tied to a mindset of “James was our ticket.” But is this mindset valid? Popular belief gaining steam now is that James might not be the ticket, for Cleveland or any city. He’s not the Jordan-esque player who refuses to be denied in his relentless pursuit of winning. So if the perspective that James screwed Cleveland is contingent upon a belief that he was the guarantee of an eventual championship, then the perspective loses credibility.
Assuming that a one-hour ESPN special titled “The Apology” isn’t in the works, James will surely be booed vehemently upon his return to Quicken Loans Arena. But Cavs fans may do well to boo softly, because otherwise James may turn into the professional basketball assassin of legend, stopping at nothing to prove those wrong who said he didn’t care about winning. Rather than steeling James’ resolve, Cavs fans must steel their own. Because that creates the potential for the most interesting scenario of all: James’ decision to leave Cleveland fueling a united, determined Cavs team to the championship, making James the one who brought a title to Cleveland afterall. Just in a way nobody expected.
The NFL Draft is tonight at 7:30 ET on ESPN/NFL Network.
ElevenWarriors has a look at the Buckeyes hoping to hear their names called over the next three days.
A lot of Browns fans seem to want Eric Berry at 7 and Colt McCoy in the 2nd round, that would be just fine with me. Thaddeus Gibson in the 3rd would be too good to be true.
The Cavs play game 3 tonight at Chicago (7:00 ET, TNT). Will the
Bulls be encouraged that they played so well in game 2? or discouraged that they played so well in game 2 and still lost? We will find out tonight.
It should be a nice sports evening.
Also, the Buckeyes had their spring game ‘draft’ yesterday (photos).
Tony Gerdeman brings us Tressel’s thoughts on the draft.
And the guys over at TheSilverBullet chime in with some thoughts.
Finally, check out the guys over at WaitingForNextYear throughout the day for plenty of thoughts on the Cavs game as well as the draft tonight (if you are interested in a Browns-centric perspective).
If all of that doesn’t get you through the morning and/or afternoon I don’t know what will.
Have a good day everyone.
The schedule for the NBA Playoffs is out. This is the year Cleveland Cavalier fans get their vengeance on all the Michael Jordan memories that were thrust upon them.
Game 1 – Saturday, April 17th, 3pm at Cleveland
Game 2 – Monday, April 19th, 8pm at Cleveland
Game 3 – Thursday, April 22nd, 8pm at Chicago
Game 4 – Sunday, April 25th, 330pm at Chicago
Game 5 – Tuesday, April 27th at Cleveland (if needed)
Game 6 – Thursday, April 29th at Chicago (if needed)
Game 7 – Saturday, May 1st at Cleveland (if needed)
Bring it on!