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Thursday
May212009

The King of what?

Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler

----In the dictionary, a King is defined as a male monarch whose hereditary position prompts chief authority over a country and people.  In sports, a King is defined as an athlete who is unarguably the best.

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Well, LeBron James is neither.  Unless my research has failed me, Bron-bron is not related to King David, his bloodline does not stem to Tutankhamen, and sorry, no, he is not the long lost heir of King James I.  So shall we explore another option?  Indeed.

Let’s stick with the sole sport of basketball, rather than range the rest of the sporting world which would only further support my dispute. 

In a sport that only fields five players at a time (per team), a single player has the ability to dictate the ultimate goal in sports, a championship.  It is the only team sport in our country (and perhaps Hockey) where one individual can take their team to the promise land.  No, not the land of Canaan my fellow Lamechs, I’m talking about winning the NBA finals. 

Thus, winning a ring surely declares who really is the best, or shall I say, thee King.

Give me a moment while I google how many NBA Championships the “King” has won…okay, here it is.  Are you ready?  Are you sure you’re ready?  It’s zero.  Zilch.  Zip.  Nil.  Nada.  Null.  How ever you’d like to say it, he doesn’t have any.  So why do we prompt him as the King?  

Bill Russell has 11.  Eleven!  He doesn’t even have enough fingers for all those rings.  Shaqopotamus (brought to you by Tony Kornheiser) and Timmy-D each have four.  Some dude named Michael Jeffrey Jordan has six (should have been eight...brief retirement).  And the “King,” hold on let me check another source just to ensure, yea, he has zero. 

But all those players are either long gone or past their prime right?  And the only guy left to claim the crown is Mr. James right?  Wrong. 

We have two lovely candidates who could surely bid for the title of this era’s divine athlete.  Kobe Bryant and Dwyane Wade, the other elitists (now that’s unarguable) of today’s NBA game.

They have rings.  Yes, they both had the Shaqtus (Shaquille came up with that one all by his lonesome), but Dwyane had a HalfaShaq (that one’s on me), and Kobe, no matter the argument, still has three more than LeBron’s, um, zero. 

But wait, we are in the midst of an incredible playoff stretch for Mr. James, who seemingly drops 40 points every time his boots (which Nike senselessly calls sneakers) hit the hardwood. 

So would it surprise me if he did indeed take his team to the holiest of hollies?  Actually it would. 

But would it surprise every other American out there?  Probably not. 

So then would he become, shall I dare say it, King?   Ha.  Excuse me, that was rude.  I mean, no. 

Why?  Kobe, three.  And Dwayne Wade still has that one.  That one where he averaged 35 points, 8 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals and a block; and yes, that all occurred in the land of Canaan. 

Suppose Mr. James does win the title this year, could his performance surpass Wade’s?  Doubtful.  Could it surpass Kobe’s?  Impossible:  No, I am not a mathematician, but I’m pretty sure three is more than one…or should I say zero.

Yes, Bron-bron is young and he has time.  He is six years younger than Kobe and three years younger than Wade.  So sure, LeBron has more time than the both of them to pile up those rings.  But will he?

Certainly, it appears as if he may be the heir to the throne, but the King he is not.  The Prince?