The LeBron James infomercial lived down to expectations. ESPN promised James would give his answer in the first ten minutes - he dragged it out until 27 minutes in and after multiple commercial breaks had aired. After the insufferable Jim Gray finally asked the only question anyone actually cared about the answer to, James went through with tearing the guts out of his hometown on national TV in favor of teaming up with buddies in Miami. His explanation for the choice made little sense, with him claiming Miami was the best chance for him to win - Chicago actually would have been, since the Heat now have to piecemeal an entire minimum salary team around three guys. James did not let Cleveland know his choice in advance, which boggles the mind. Choosing to leave is one thing, but for James to lack enough respect for a franchise that has catered to his every whim for seven years to even give them any advance notice ahead of you and me is incredible. That may be why Cavs owner Dan Gilbert issued a ridiculously over the top statement, vowing Cleveland would win a championship before "the self titled former King" does. Cleveland has everyone's sympathy, because they've just clinched the title of most miserable sports city for decades to come, but that's just idiotic for the owner to say. You couldn't win with James, nor could you sell any quality free agents on coming to town to join him, but you'll win it without him on the strength of Delonte West? Let's at least try to make some sense here. No one comes out of this whole LeBron free agency saga looking good except for ticket scalpers with good seats for Heat games.
David Lee has spent the past few years playing for a terrible team in a great city as a member of the New York Knicks, which makes him a perfect fit for life as a member of the Golden State Warriors. The team is acquiring him in a sign and trade as the Knicks try to sell fans that the chance to build around Amare Stoudamire is really what they're thrown away two whole seasons waiting for. I'm glad to see Lee get the 80 million dollar deal. He was a good guy to cover at UF, and has made himself an excellent player with very little help from the crack Knicks operation. Hopefully for him new ownership will make the Warriors less of a pit of misery once the sale of the team to someone is completed.
If you've listened to ESPN Radio's Sunday NFL show during the season the past few years, one of the voices you've heard as a host was Jeremy Green. He's former coach Dennis Green's son and, like Todd McShay, a member of the "Scouts Inc." branch of ESPN. It will be a major shocker if you hear him in any role like that again, because Green has been arrested and charged with possession of child pornography as well as narcotics and drug paraphernalia. How can people who are seemingly fully functioning adults have a sickness in their head like this? How many more do and are either not caught or have enough restraint and sanity not to act on it? I don't have kids, and stories like this and Steve Babik's arrest make me grateful I don't because it would make it mighty difficult to trust anyone at all to be around them.
One hazard of my line of work is that people confuse what you think will happen with being what you want to happen (when frequently you don't care one way or the other). I don't typically make a bunch of predictions on games a central part of my show like some hosts do, but it's inevitable that people want to know whether you think the home team's going to win or not. Most people can grasp that just because I might pick Alabama to beat South Carolina that doesn't mean I have a rooting interest in that outcome, but there are always a few who take it the wrong way and email or call to blast me for it. As such, I feel for Paul the Octopus. The creature correctly predicted the outcome of every German game in the World Cup, including their eventual semifinal loss to Spain. Naturally, some idiots think the octopus is to blame for the defeat and want to have him killed. After the Gamecocks lost to Vandy in week two of my first season covering them, a fan sent me a lengthy email blaming my supposed "negativity" (I had actually expected them to win, but I guess not by as much as this guy) for not just that defeat but losses that had happened as far back as 14 years earlier. If he could have had me turned into calamari, I'm sure the suggestion would have sounded good to him. Paul has picked Germany to win their consolation game, with Spain taking the overall title.
With remakes and sequels dominating the entertainment options coming out of Hollywood these days, there's one possibility for a rebirth that sounds pretty promising. Beavis and Butthead may resurface after more than a decade of no new episodes. Like WKRP in Cincinnati, you can't really see the original shows because of the music licensing issues although they were able to put out some that got cleared. At this point B & B would need to have moved beyond music video commentary, but there's no reason they can't be written for the 2010s and be hilarious. Hopefully this will happen.
I will be going on vacation with my wife next week, heading out to California for our second anniversary. She has made it very clear she would prefer I not spend any of that time cranking out blog entries. As such, the next daily blog will appear Monday July 19th. Because I can't just ignore the internet for a week in favor of whatever's in the L.A. Times print edition, I will still be on Twitter periodically. Follow along at @heathradio should you be interested. Two days after I get back to work I'll be in Birmingham for SEC football media days - the summer has really flown by. Thanks for reading and I'll see you back here on the 19th.