LeBron James was one or two ping pong bounces away from playing in Memphis. And if James’ rookie season wasn’t so fucking epic, maybe MGK isn’t on the 2K17 soundtrack.
So here is how close Lebron (BTW thisclose) was to wearing the baby blue jerseys down in Tennessee. Back when the Grizz played 100 miles north of Seattle, internet connection required your mom to Not Pick Up The Fucking Phone and Kid Rock looked worse than Nickelback, the Detroit Pistons traded a box of spare parts, 35 year old Otis Thorpe, to Vancover for a future lottery.
Here’s the kicker: Vancover then Memphis, would keep the number one pick. Picks 2 through oblivion go to the Pistons. Unfortunately the Pistons drafted Darko couldn’t pronounce his last name so why bother. Vancover bought a Power Ball Winner for evening but the basketball gods rung him up for midday.
David Stern walks up to the podium, “With the first pick in the 2003 NBA Draft the Memphis Grizzlies select from St. Vincent-St. Mary High School LeBron James”.
(They doesn’t sound right in present context like, “Trump Fires FBI Director” wait …)
LeBron gets some stability in his professional life. Trade Paul Silas, Mike Brown, Dan Gilbert , a washing machine and the team bus driver for Hubie Brown and Exec Jerry West what do you get?
Imagine Jerry West mentoring him. He averaged 38 points in a seven-game Finals series against Boston, where he lost at home. That is something the kid from Akron could lean on in close games.
Also the hypothetical 2004 to 2008ish lineup:
PG Earl Watson
SG James Posey
SF Lebron James
PF Drew Gooden
C Pau Gasol
Not to mention Mike Miller and Shane Battier coming off the bench. Lebron’s still Rookie of the Year and makes it to the NBA Finals in 2007 before losing to Timmy’s Spurs in 7 games. The first ‘Big Three’ is built in Boston because Danny Ainge has his old Celtic-fuck-buddy in Minnesota. Lebron departs from Bluff City and pairs up with Dwyane Wade and Carmelo Anthony in South Beach.
(Why not Bosh.. b/c fuck that. The space and pace, 3 and D, three-point revolution starts in 2010-2011).
LeBron, Wade and Anthony three-peat against the Mavericks, Thunder and Spurs, before losing to the Spurs. Then 2015 arrives Lebron and co. beat the Warriors. Then the Heat get bounced in four games the 2016 finals against a 73-win team. Kyrie averages a double-double despite never winning a playoff series. Wade gets traded to Chicago for Jimmy Butler. Melo goes to NY for Porzingis. And yep Lebron makes his 7th consecutive finals appearance. Winning three and losing three.
Who wins game 7? No clue. James is the first childhood star to not fuck. The worst thing he done was make a career move. It’s hard to imagine a Grizzlies fan saying, “This is the worst thing to happened to the city since Elvis”, when LeBron left the Grizz in 2010. We can dream, but one thing is for certain, Karma is Lebron’s Bitch.
Feature Image (Lebron James Instagram/Screenshot)
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