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George Karl has a theory on the LeBron criticism

Oct 2, 2010, 5:47 PM EDT

So there was “The Decision.” And then the backlash to the “The Decision.” And then reaction to the backlash of “The Decision.” And now criticism of the reaction to the backlash of “The Decision.”

Kill me.

So after LeBron pulled out the race card (which I actually don’t begrudge him for, it’s just an opinion, but I do begrudge him for forcing me to read 900 articles about people’s criticism of him using the race card), everyone’s weighing in. Including Denver coach George Karl. You know, because Karl is the coach in Miami a rival city the Eastern Conference Denver. So naturally he should weigh on this.

I’m just kidding, of course. Karl’s a respected voice in the NBA and predictably, his reaction is just as reasonable. He doesn’t think race played a part, as he told NBA FanHouse’s Chris Tomasson. Instead, he’s got an alternate theory.

“People are jealous.”

Oh, okay then. I mean, it makes sense. It’s just interesting that Karl claims it’s not racism (and you should click the link for the quote about sexism he gave Tomasson). You’d think given that LeBron’s negative Q rating among African-Americans didn’t increase, that would be a sign that perhaps race is at least an element.

But the, really, you’re talking about complex issues that have very serious consequences and all of this is because some guy switched jobs and is now the biggest villain in the world. Cats and dogs, living together. Mass hysteria.

  1. Hmm - Oct 2, 2010 at 7:13 PM

    Amazing how everyone who publicly comments or writes an article about the “decision” simply misses the whole reason why there is backlash in the first place. EGO is the key ingredient, not race or jealousy. I can’t stand LBJ anymore, but I still like D-Wade, don’t have any issue with Bosh, and don’t hate Miami. I just hate over-inflated Ego’s, and LBJ has the biggest I’ve ever seen. As soon as he said. “I’m taking my talents to south beach” it was over..

  2. David - Oct 2, 2010 at 7:20 PM

    I don’t think it’s fair to phrase what LeBron said as “having played the race card.” To me, there is an implication in any statement about “playing the race card” that the statement was A: Unsolicited and B: Saying that racism is the primary reason for whatever problems the individual in question is having.
    LeBron was asked a question by a CNN reporter, and he gave his opinion…. Which was that race played some part in the reaction to his decision. He didn’t blame the backlash entirely on race. He just said it played some part.
    To me, there is nothing outlandish about that statement. LeBron isn’t saying that the people who dislike him are racist. I’m sure he means that race just colors everyone’s perceptions about people and their decisions in a subtle way.
    It doesn’t matter if we’re talking about athletes of politicians. White people tend to be more forgiving of white people, and black people forgive blacks easier.
    Like JA Adande said, that’s not racism. That’s just being comfortable with whats most familiar to you.

  3. David - Oct 2, 2010 at 7:29 PM

    The whole reaction to this thing is just so far out of proportion.
    LeBron has a really, really big ego. But that’s all he’s guilty of. He’s never committed any crime and is renowned for being a totally unselfish basketball player.
    Having a huge ego doesn’t make you a bad person. There are a LOT of athletes in the NBA and NFL today who have done things in their lives that make them much more worthy of “hatred” than LeBron.
    Once the games start, this chatter is going to die down significantly once people realize how much fun this team will be to watch.

  4. Stryker - Oct 2, 2010 at 7:55 PM

    And I’m not saying that LBJ is a bad person.
    He is just a man-child with a lot of money and the lifestyle that go with it. His mind-set is that of a high-school kid with access to most things money can buy. The result? A convoluted outlook on what real life is all about.
    If the manner in which he moved to Miami was done without the immature fanfare, if it was done the proper way, then I would like to think that even the Cavs fans will understand LBJ’s decision and will not feel betrayed. Sure, they will be hurt to see him go, but they would still understand where he is coming from.
    Look at KG. When he came back to Minnesota as a Celtic, you barely felt any hate coming from the locals. Most of them welcomed him and thanked him. There wasn’t much criticism (if there were any) for him leaving the T-Wolves for the Celtics.
    The thing is, he used his celebrity status to have those who will be affected by this decision to be left hanging… only to be disappointed later.
    It didn’t feel right. Sure, it’s business. Contract expired. He has the right to choose where he thinks it is best for him and his family. For most matured and thinking people, that part of his Decision is not being questioned.
    I have no beef against him joining forces with Wade and Bosh. I welcome the challenge just as much as I welcomed and got excited for the Celtics when KG and Allen joined Pierce three years ago. And I’m a Lakers fan at that. Basketball is a team game. One superstar can’t get those championships alone. Not even Jordan. Not even Russel. And most certainly, not even Magic and Bird.

  5. badam - Oct 2, 2010 at 8:30 PM

    james made the biggest mistake of his basketball career. he could have been a legend

  6. More than enough of Lebron! - Oct 2, 2010 at 8:35 PM


  7. travis - Oct 3, 2010 at 8:57 AM

    Race had/has NOTHING,ZERO,ZILCH.NOTTA,ETC to do with his criticism.That is just ludicrous.So for everyone bashing him for using the”race card” ,He deserves it

  8. Pochiko - Oct 3, 2010 at 10:49 AM

    LeBron choked in the playoffs and realized he’s not the type of player who can carry team on his back, so he went to a team that’s stacked so he can win it all without being “the man.” It’s his choice, but if they win it all it won’t be because of LeBron’s greatness. He gave up his potential legacy for easy rings. Put him in different category now than the truly great ones, though. He should never be mentioned in same breath as the legends, period.

  9. D-Mack - Oct 5, 2010 at 11:06 AM

    Remember those times when Kobe was choking in the playoffs and quitting until he realized he couldn’t do it by himself (which no one besides Olajuwon in a down year did).
    Ego argument: Who’s the problem? The guy with the ego or the people who make the ego possible and excuse others who have similar egos?
    Its not just jealousy, its that people are afraid because the Heat are a threat to their teams. I bet all the people criticizing Lebron would have a different opinion if he had said he was coming to their team.
    By the way, if Lebron averages a triple-double and wins his 3rd straight MVP, that solidifies his position with the legends.

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