Links To The Present: June 3, 2010

June 3rd, 2010 by Tom Pestak

“LeBron shames.  That’s what Cleveland fans have been thinking about LeBron James ever since he disappeared and his Cavaliers collapsed in the second round of the NBA playoffs.  Around here, win or lose, fans desperate to sip championship champagne once in their lives have always treated James royally.  Just not now.”  [Tom Withers]

“In so many ways, he’s a young Alex Rodriguez, so insecure with himself and his MVP awards, so desperate to find validation in the courtship of free agency.  “He seems more enthusiastic about this than he did trying to beat the Celtics,” said one Western Conference GM. “I mean, who goes on Larry King to talk about ‘when I become a free agent’?” [Adrian Wojnarowski]

“Bryant is wired so differently. To listen to LeBron James talk about wanting a global platform, wanting to be as much Jay-Z as Jordan, you have to wonder whether he’ll ever have that consuming need to be a champion again and again. Eventually, LeBron will win his title, but will he evolve his game like Bryant and Jordan, push past the athletic gifts to develop something that can sustain him into his 30s. I asked Bryant: Can you want all those outside things, chase them all, and still win championship after championship?  He thought for a moment, and then gave a big, big smile. “I’m going to say … ‘Yes.’ ” He was trying to be polite, but he doesn’t believe it.” [Adrian Wojnarowski]

“That’s probably why everyone from “The Real Housewives of New York City” to President Barack Obama are chiming in on where LeBron should go. And while Clevelanders are preparing for the worst and already claiming that if LeBron were to leave he “could replace Art Modell as the most hated person in Cleveland,” they have to be pretty happy he said the Cavs have an edge, even if it’s minute.  Then again, are Clevelanders ever happy? They are in Cleveland, after all. I’ve heard there’s nothing to do there.” [Trey Kerby – BDL]

“Making sure to qualify his comments that he was speaking in generalities and not as a potential candidate, Van Gundy praised both owner Dan Gilbert and General Manager Danny Ferry. “Danny Ferry and their ownership have proven they care deeply about winning and about people,” Van Gundy said. “That is a winning combination to sell.”” [Brian Windhorst]

“However, if it’s an extension of the mini-max — an attempt to whip front offices into shape and fight the assumption that a James or Wade can be bought indefinitely — then what’s so bad about continuing to put pressure on teams? Maybe it’s LeBron’s fault that the Cavs came up short. Still, he shouldn’t be the one dealing with inertia. If he has limitations, he needs teammates, and an organization, that gloss over those.” [Bethlehem Shoals]

Tweets To The Present: (follow me @tompestak)

“Obama also told King: that LeBron needs a team and coach “that he respects.” Well, it is a mid-term election year.” [Brian Windhorst]

“Am I the only person who thinks President Obama needs to stop talking about LeBron James? Does it really matter what he thinks about that?” [Michael Lee]

“Adrian Wojnarowski is upset with Jim Joyce for upstaging the NBA Finals.” [TiricoSuave]