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By Nick Shepkowski-
(CBS) With LeBron James finally getting the championship he’s sought for so long and plenty of people still unwilling to give him their respect, it’s a good time to look back at how he and Chris Bosh wound up joining Dwayne Wade in Miami.
It was the summer of 2010 and likely the most memorable offseason we’ll ever see in any sport. LeBron James, “The Chosen One” was the most coveted free agent in sports history, and a few other Olympic-level players were available in Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh and Amar’e Stoudemire. Despite endless loads of speculation, nobody outside of a very select few had any idea where the superstars were going to end up. Fans in different cities made their pitches, especially for James.
As quick as most here like to forget, Chicago was no different. Remember the pitch nearly every Chicago fan was making in order to try and help their team land the then two-time league MVP?
“With Rose and Noah already here, the Bulls are the easiest place LeBron can go to win a championship!”
Don’t act like that wasn’t the main selling point or why countless Bulls fans thought they should land the talents of “The King.” An endless number of fans made it a point on this radio station on a daily basis that summer to express that no other team had as much talent already in place than Chicago, and with the maturing Derrick Rose already in place, the easiest road to an NBA championship was through the Windy City.
Sure, how James went about going to Miami with “The Decision” being aired nationally on ESPN and the celebration put on by the Heat just a few days after the announcement left a bad taste in most people’s mouths and understandably so. The Heat acted as if they had just completed a historic season, not simply assembled a championship-level roster. With as ridiculous as that celebration was, it’s tough to believe it wouldn’t have been embraced by Chicago fans had it been done at United Center instead of American Airlines Arena.
The point of me looking back on this is to say that as a fan, you can’t have it both ways. Just two summers ago it was the Bulls who were supposed to land LeBron and/or Bosh because of the pieces they already had in place and how it would be easiest for him to win a title here.
Well, James found a better situation than the one Bulls fans tried to pitch, and I can’t blame him for taking it.
Nick Shepkowski is the associate producer for The McNeil and Spiegel Show. You can follow him on Twitter @Shep670