LeBron James, The Most Hated Athlete in the United States?

Lebron James

My parents always told me that hate was such a strong word. I’m sure most of you were told similar things by somebody prevalent in your life. But sports is the one tragic outlier to this rule. Sports can end relationships, friendships and put you at odds with family. It’s a consistent mess and for me, its almost unhealthy. There are millions of fans around the world that are just like me. Where there is love in sports, there is hate.

The National Basketball Association doesn’t necessarily grab my interest. Being born in Philadelphia in the early 90’s, I had the Allen Iverson driven 76ers of the early 2000’s. The prime of my basketball viewing career. I’m much more interested in college ball. LeBron James decided not to take the college ball route, being drafted in 2003 out of St. Vincent-St. Mary in Akron, Ohio. Miraculously the Cleveland Cavaliers had the first pick in the 2003 NBA Draft and no draft pick has ever made more sense. James instantly became one of the most popular players in the NBA. James rejuvenated a blue-collar city like Cleveland, Ohio. LeBron even took his Cavaliers to the NBA Finals in 2007, only to be swept by the San Antonio Spurs. Things started to change for James, as the talent that they brought in for him didn’t work and LeBron couldn’t win a championship for his home state. In 2010 LeBron went from basketball hero, to an unforgivable villain.

James and his publicity department decided what was best for him was to publicly televise his announcement of where he was going to play next. James chose the Miami Heat, a team that won the NBA championship in 2006 under star Dwayne Wade. LeBron decided that it was his best decision to team up with Wade and star power forward and former Toronto Raptor Chris Bosh. James not only publicly denounced Cleveland on national television but decided that he would rather join a group of stars instead of stars coming to Cleveland. Alas, LeBron was headed to South Beach and continued gaining attention by holding a “welcoming party” where he stated how many championships he intended on winning. He is quoted saying “We didn’t come here to win one championship, not two, not three, not four, not five, not six, not seven…”, his arrogance was just blossoming. The Miami Heat would become the most closely watched basketball team in all of the NBA. The first season for the Miami Heat was extremely unforgettable, as they would lose to the Dallas Mavericks during the 2010 NBA Finals. LeBron once again fell flat. The Heat though would rebound and would win the NBA title the next year. LeBron would finally be able to hold the championship high above his head. LeBron now is working on his second NBA championship, down 3-2 to the San Antonio Spurs, the team that beat LeBron back in 2007. LeBron heads home for games six and seven, which looks to be a thrilling finale. But how does this make him the most hated player in the NBA?

LeBron for me, makes me want to watch basketball. Not because I want to root for him, but I want to see him lose. I loathe him when he wins, and cheer when the Heat lose. What bothers me most about James is that everyone assumes that he is going to be the greatest of all time. I don’t even think he is the greatest player in the NBA right now. Kobe takes that one. LeBron ditched Ohio and their fans. James is also all over national media for his efforts. ESPN and NBAtv, can’t get enough of the LeBron James conversation and comparing him with the greats like Jordan, Magic and Kobe. Who else has gotten this much publicity in sports? Tim Tebow owns a majority of the NFL coverage, when he is relevant but unfortunately for LeBron, Tebow isn’t even a starter. Tiger Woods has rejuvenated his image from past years and Michael Vick has stayed squeaky clean as well. Another reason why LeBron James is my most hated athlete in all of sports is simply because he does still have a huge following. You’re either a huge LeBron fan or you can’t stand him. He is the NBA and the NBA needs a villain, and James was inserted beautifully. My friends call me a hater, I think i’m a realist. We have to be true sports fans and admit that we generally don’t like some of these stars.

I can’t think of anyone else that intrigues me more in the world of sports than LeBron, he brings out a hate, simply because of my love of sports.

Who do you think is the most hated athlete in the United States? Does LeBron top your list?

 

Tags:

About the author: Corey Panati

 

Corey Panati is a student at York College, and he's also the latest addition to Guys Gab. He's excited to bring his love of sports and movies to a browser near you. If you're on Twitter, you can follow his ramblings @coreypanati

 

Recent posts in Sports

 

5 Comments

  • the_Big_G

    Lebron is great. Not the greatest but great. With that being sad I hate that mother***** more than life itself. I hate the smugness in which he has and that air of greatness he doesn’t deserve. Bottom line is the Spurs are a true team. Greg Pop is a true coach. Tim Duncan has put together a 16year career in which he molded into the team. He deserves yet another ring…. Lebron, well Mr Southbeach, deserves this loss.

  • Corey Panati

    Thanks for the comment! There is no doubting his greatness, but I think you make an awesome point about the Spurs being a true team. I don’t doubt that and I appreciate Pop and Duncan and Parker, and I felt good after they won last night. However, if this was the Spurs vs. the Pacers, I don’t think I would be watching. LeBron is simply the reason why I am watching and rooting for the Spurs.

  • Brent Sterkits

    I respect your points of view and am open to anyone’s about Lebron. The main reason everyone hates on him is because of the “The Decision.” Everyone can agree it was a mistake. The media has hyped him up always comparing him to MJ and Kobe putting some unfair pressure on him that definitely is in the back of his mind. Truth is, I want Lebron to be Lebron. He is one of the best players of this generation. The dude can just flat out play and affect the game in everyday. Sometimes he isn’t fair. The hate stems from him deserting Cleveland. I’ll take that over half the guys in the NBA settling child support issues with different women. Ill also take that over guns and gambling disputes that many players partake in. Also all the steriods and PHD im professional sports. Bron is a family man, gifted athlete, and a presence. Sure there is hate but how much hate can you really have for the guy? Parts of me hate him and love him but I would not say I completely despise him and want him to lose. People love to see him lose cause he has been winning his whole life.

  • to me basketball is not relevant enough for James to be the biggest villain in sports. although it seems as though all ESPN wants to talk about is the nba I refuse to watch sportscenter. but going along with ESPN and their passion for football I feel as though bill bellichek needs to be included as a hated sports figure. although he is not a player non New Englanders can not stand him. as for athletes there is no doubt in my mind that James is the most hated nba. but I would say to me as a baseball guy Aroid whoops I mean arod would be my most hated sports figure. to me baseball is different from any other sport because players will not leave to win a championship but for the money. than again for me being from Maryland seeing mark texeria in pinstripes when he a born and bred Marylander outright said he would love to play in Baltimore but left for the money of the arch rival and most hated team in sports. good article though a lot to honk about

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

 

 

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Notify me of followup comments via e-mail.

 
 
 
 
 

Archives

 
 

Categories

 
 

Post of the Week

 
 
 

Recent Comments

  • Baxtton: Awesome car …
     
  • Phil: LOL! These are pretty funny even if I don't agree with all o…
     
  • Jason Gomez: Great movie swag, the movie looks awesome starring the late …
     
  • Aaron: It's all about the interior. You could literally live in thi…
     
  • Carlos Parga: What an awesome contest! Hope I win! …
     
 
 


Bloggers - Meet Millions of Bloggers