Clevelanders laughing as LeBron loses
LeBron James reacts during Sunday night's NBA Finals game against the Dallas Mavericks. Dallas' Dirk Nowitzki is at rear.
June 13th, 2011
08:02 AM ET

Clevelanders laughing as LeBron loses

When the Dallas Mavericks finished off the Miami Heat in Game 6 of the NBA Finals on Sunday night, the happiness in Dallas may have been eclipsed in only one place, Cleveland, the city that Heat star LeBron James left to take his talents to South Beach.

CNN affiliate WOIO-TV in Cleveland had a one-word headline on its sports page under a picture of James holding up his Heat jersey: "LOSER!"

"LeBron James still has no rings,"  the site's story began.

Cleveland.com quickly jumped on James' failure to bring a championship to Miami, something he promised would happen multiple times when he and former Toronto Raptor Chris Bosh joined Heat superstar Dwayne Wade in Miami.

The site posted a video of James, Wade and Bosh made as Miami celebrated their arrival last July.

"It looks even sillier after the Dallas Mavericks clinched the NBA title with their win at Miami tonight," the site says.  "Hear James say, 'The way we're gonna challenge each other to get better in practice, once the game starts, I mean it's gonna be easy.'

"Best of all, hear James count up of how many championships Miami will win. No limit."

Cavs fans may be chuckling over that Monday morning, but Yahoo! Sports Dan Wetzel writes they were laughing at James as they watched from a Cleveland bar during Sunday night's game.

"A crowd of Clevelanders gathered here to watch their onetime hero turned all-time traitor, and with each disinterested LeBron offensive possession, each failed LeBron chase down of Jason Terry, each embarrassing LeBron crunch-time turnover, the prevailing emotion was simple.

"Laughter.

"They weren’t hating LeBron here. They were laughing at him," Wetzel writes.

SI.com's Michael Rosenberg says James needs to take the loss the right way, with a heavy dose of humility that is needed to achieve true greatness.

"I hope he acknowledges that he brought this criticism upon himself and, I hope he admits it publicly and candidly. ... But after a year of being hated, LeBron can change and show the humility and desire we admire in all of our best athletes."

As far as becoming a true champion, James could learn a lesson from the Mavericks and their star, NBA Finals MVP Dirk Nowitzki, writes Fort Worth Star-Telegram columnist Jennifer Floyd Engel.

"On its very best day, the game is about a guy like Dirk refusing to quit, to give into the doubt, to fail. And his guys, like (Mavs' coach Rick) Carlisle and (teammate Jason) Terry, backing him up. And not about an egomaniacal athlete named LeBron."

SI.com's Chris Mannix writes that Nowitzki's Mavericks won as a team and James' Heat "abandoned any semblance of a team game in favor of selfish, one-on-one play."

SI.com's Ian Thomsen points out that in getting his first NBA title, Nowitzki took a course that James rejected.

"He had drawn strength from playing with the same teammates year after year. Altogether he and they built a championship team that James and his newly assembled Heat could not beat. As far as they had come in one season together, they hadn't had enough time to resolve issues that had taken the Mavericks' several years to overcome," Thomsen writes.

As the game finished Sunday night, Nowitzki bolted off the court in Miami's American Airlines Arena toward the visitor's locker room. He wanted to cry alone, writes ESPN.com's Marc Stein.

"I could already feel the tears coming," Stein quotes Nowtizki as saying. "I had to recover, bro."

Mavericks owner Mark Cuban said in an ESPN interview that Nowitzki "had the heart of a lion." Watch what else he had to say about his team's first NBA championship.

While Cuban was talkative Sunday night, he changed his form and stayed out of the spotlight during his team's playoff run, writes Jeff Caplan on ESPNDallas.com.

And now he has an NBA championship trophy and apparently he's not letting go of it. At least that's what it looks like on his Twitpic account.

One of those congratulating Cuban was Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert who posted on his Twitter account: "Congrats to Mark C. & entire Mavs org. Mavs NEVER stopped & now entire franchise gets rings. Old Lesson for all: There are NO SHORTCUTS. NONE."

Even a former Cavalier, Los Angeles Clippers guard Mo Williams, was happy to see his old teammate James without a championship ring.

"Dallas just healed my HEART," Williams tweeted.

Half a world away, hearts were cheered too in Wurzburg, Germany, where fans of the NBA Finals MVP and hometown hero Dirk Nowitzki partied into the night, CNN affiliate WFAA reported.

And at least Cavaliers fan had a warning for a possible finals fallout:

"Just be careful when shipping the Miami Heat champs T-shirts to the poor in Guatemala," NBA.com quoted Avon, Ohio's, Nathan Obral as saying. "They could be a choking hazard."

Post by:
Filed under: Basketball • Cleveland • LeBron James • NBA • Ohio • Sports
soundoff (1,422 Responses)
  1. ghost

    THE MAYANS were correct NBA ratings collapsed without jordan

    June 13, 2011 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
  2. wilie

    I kinda feel sorry for James. The media told him he is the best ever and he was dumb enough to believe it. How could anyone 6-8 and built like a truck with tremendous speed and strength considered to be great when he has absolutely no post up game? Karl Malone would've eaten him alive! A 38 year old point guard, Jason Kidd, was able to defend him with few difficulties. Not to mention James' confusion and inability to make a smart play down the stretch. The way he posed and cried for foul calls was downright unmanly. He has a long way to go to get to the top. Don't even mention this guy in the same sentence as Magic Johnson.

    June 13, 2011 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Nitrous

    Wow. The team with the big white dude won.

    June 13, 2011 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Slim

      True that but the rest of the team is big and black but good win for Dirk kind of looked like Lebron quit playing a few games ago Miami will have to look at that one with slashing ability you do not need a post up game Karl malone could'nt dribble that's why he posted up winning a championship in one year give L.A. took a grip of talen and lost every team tries to get the best talent hate on Miami because they got it lets get real why don't some you haters including the ones who write stories see if they can post up Lebron I rest my case

      June 13, 2011 at 1:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • wilie

      Yeah, and the 5-8 Puerto Rican was the unsung hero!

      June 13, 2011 at 1:23 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Henry Plantagenet

    Why are the Cavs fans laughing? Lebron went to the finals; the Cavs didn't. Time for Cleveland to get over it and move on.

    June 13, 2011 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chuck

      No joke, I am so sick of these Cleveland fans. People get traded...get over it. He spent 6 years there and did more for that team than anyone else could have and when he had an opportunity to go to a team where he could have a stronger supporting cast (i.e. Bosh and Wade) why shouldn't he take take it? And you are right, at least the Heat made it to the playoffs, where was Cleveland???? For all you Cleveland fans, grow up and get over it, the trade was over a year ago and you cry babies need to get over it, that is the nature of the game.

      June 13, 2011 at 1:08 pm | Report abuse |
  5. daroofa

    Lebron is lucky...he gets to leave work 12 minutes early everyday and no one says anything.

    June 13, 2011 at 12:50 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Jon

    The Mavs are a veteran team that have been playing together for years and they will be the first to admit that they failed many times in years past to get to where they are today. Congrats to them, but they are the perfect example that teams need a few years of playing together with the same core and under the same system to reach the pinnacle. I am not a heat fan, but they should keep this in perspective and realize that everyone that wants to reach the mountain top will fall a few times along the way.

    June 13, 2011 at 12:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mavsman

      Tysun Chadler for Eric Dampier. That's what made the Mavericks world champions. Chandler was the missing piece. Dampier was Dallas's first string center, now he's on the Miami bench.

      Note to Miami fans from Mavs fan that's been there – 3 superstars can give you 75 points, but that's not enough to win a championship. Find and fix your missing piece.

      June 13, 2011 at 1:00 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Fred

    An article about the Lebron haters turns into words against the President?!? Amazing!

    June 13, 2011 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rob

      can you be surprised? there is a long history of racists in this country thinking that all black men are the same....

      June 13, 2011 at 12:54 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Patrick Tull

    Hey Brad, I want you to remember your words the next time Cleveland trade away one of its players. It is a busines plain and simple. Owners trade loyal players all the time, and they have to suck it up. James gaved seven years of his life to Cleveland, without a championship. It was time for James to move on, win lose or other. In his first year with the Heat he made it to the NBA finals something he was unable to do with Cleveland. So Cleveland can hate all they want, just suck it up and move on.

    June 13, 2011 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |
  9. daniele

    Where does Cleveland get off bagging on LeBron? At least the Heat made it to the finals! It's a learning curve. Cleveland still gets no respect and seems extremely bitter.

    June 13, 2011 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Mavs fan

    For those who can't seem to understand why LeBron is disliked, let me clarify it for you. It's not about where he left or where he went or even how those teams performed with or without him. The man had every right to move from one team to another, and he could have done so with honesty and integrity.

    Instead, he chose to intentinally underperform for his old team while they were in the playoffs. He was being payed millions to perform a task to the best of his ability. He slacked; nobody likes a slacker.

    At the time, he had already chosen to move to another team, yet he repeatedly lied about his intentions. Nobody likes a liar.

    When he finally came clean about where he'd chosen ot play, he boasted about it in one of the most public ways possible, even promising an easy path to the championship. Nobody likes a braggart.

    Any questions?

    June 13, 2011 at 12:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rob

      I suppose he was intentionally underplaying for the Heat too, huh? the cavs SUCK and so he left after 7 years of cleveland failing to build a team....

      June 13, 2011 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kuniu

      Right on!

      June 13, 2011 at 1:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • biggal195

      I don't know about the intentional slacking. I don't think anyone has any proof of that. But the "Nobody likes a braggart" statement definitely fits here (to a tee). Upon making his decision to go to Miami, Le Bron appeared on video vowing to win the championship, now not later, and even saying it would be easy. Well, arrogance puts a bad taste in everyone's mouth. As another Mavs fan and Dallasite, I'd like to remind everyone that in the past, our NFL team used to be called "America's team." Some sportscasters still like to call them that. But sometime back in the past, before their performance took a nose dive, they got into a little too much bragging. Now, the fact is most of America can't stand them. It's going to be a long road back.

      June 13, 2011 at 1:24 pm | Report abuse |
  11. mofo

    Just when you think life isn't fair.....wooohooo.. .down goes the ego type players. TEAMS win championships...unless MJ is on your team...even then he needed them at times.

    June 13, 2011 at 12:52 pm | Report abuse |
  12. jimbo

    @clevelandsitplease- Whatever,..your rambling against Cleveland and their fans is almost as funny as Bron Bron's play. Nobody was hating on Bron Bron, merely laughing at him (and still laughing)!

    June 13, 2011 at 12:53 pm | Report abuse |
  13. KP

    The Heat won't win it all because, although they are talented enough, their egostical brains will not allow them to work together like true team mates do and overcome adversity. The Mav's won it on hard work as well as the team chemistry; The Heat has no chemistry...they think they are too good for it...until they get their brains straightened out, they will never be champions and/or win a Championship. Congratulations to the Mavs.

    June 13, 2011 at 12:53 pm | Report abuse |
  14. countryboy

    Wheres Jordan when you need him? http://WWW.CDBABY.COM/ALL/NUMONE buy now!

    June 13, 2011 at 12:53 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Kenneth Krieger

    Bad leadership on the court. Selfish players. Bad coaching. No team or city can go all the way with LaBron. Ken Krieger Cape Coral, Florida

    June 13, 2011 at 12:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Louis

      I think LeBron needs to be the best player on any team he plays for. He needs to step up and let Wade know that and Wade needs to realize that. LeBron is an offensive force but he seems to not want to carry that load any more.

      June 13, 2011 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44