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."

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

    When is he going to have his press conference announcing his thoughts on losing?

    June 13, 2011 at 10:17 am | Report abuse |
    • Rob

      right after cleveland has their press conference announcing their thoughts on being losers

      June 13, 2011 at 10:19 am | Report abuse |
    • mattnaustin

      Sounds like Rob didn't enjoy his beating that he took last night...lol. Thats what you get for thinking you can buy a championship!

      June 13, 2011 at 10:45 am | Report abuse |
  2. Bigge

    This is crazy, Cleveland fans are laughing at Labron for making it to the finals his first year...We all are going to be laughing when the draft happens, this class is one of the weaker classes I have seen in years. No Labron James for you Cleveland....The Bulls will be beating up on you for years to come....

    June 13, 2011 at 10:18 am | Report abuse |
  3. rudy

    One never becomes a man unless he is first humbled. So life in manhood may be in the horizon for the Heat darlings. One should remind Heat that blessed are the weak for they shall inherit the earth.

    June 13, 2011 at 10:19 am | Report abuse |
    • Rob

      go re-read your bible....try getting it right next time...

      June 13, 2011 at 10:20 am | Report abuse |
  4. james Griffin

    Question: Why didn't LeBron go to college:

    Answer: BECAUSE HE'D NEVER SHOW UP FOR THE FINALS!!!!

    June 13, 2011 at 10:20 am | Report abuse |
    • Rob

      because he was given more money right out of high school than you will make in your entire life

      June 13, 2011 at 10:21 am | Report abuse |
    • ROFLMAO

      Guessing Rob is a disgruntled Heat fan

      June 13, 2011 at 10:26 am | Report abuse |
    • Rob

      not even a basketball fan...just a realistic perspective....losing in the finals of any sport isn't a bad thing...people from cleveland need to get a life....and grow up....their childish reaction makes LeBron's childishness seem insignificant.

      June 13, 2011 at 10:32 am | Report abuse |
    • MikeyD74

      its ok rob, no need to feel butthurt over losing. theres always next year... at least thats what the cubs and any cleveland team keep telling themselves

      June 13, 2011 at 10:39 am | Report abuse |
    • Dtown

      bahahaha somebody must be a LeBron fan... cough* Rob *cough

      June 13, 2011 at 10:39 am | Report abuse |
  5. Big Papa

    Cleveland fans should laugh only when they can GET to the championship series – let alone win one! Haven't seem them even COME CLOSE to getting there. Love how those Clevelanders celebrate their inferiority and mediocrity! They lost the REAL Cleveland Browns to us (Baltimore! HAH!); they lost their supposed prodigal son AFTER 7 years in which they did nothing to improve the quality and level of player around him – so WHO WOULDN'T WANT TO LEAVE? Cleveland should accomplish something – ANYTHING – before they deem themselves worthy of degrading someone other than themselves.

    June 13, 2011 at 10:21 am | Report abuse |
  6. Terri

    Why is this a story?

    June 13, 2011 at 10:21 am | Report abuse |
    • Jojo

      Why is this a post?

      June 13, 2011 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
  7. Mike

    A king without a crown is no king at all.

    June 13, 2011 at 10:21 am | Report abuse |
  8. chris d

    I can sum this up in a few words: The Better Team Won. Thats all there is to say in this situation. Dirk, J-Kidd, JJ And The Jet played with their hearts last night. D-Wade, LeBron(what kind of name is that BTW??) and Bosh acted like fools last night and lost..

    June 13, 2011 at 10:22 am | Report abuse |
  9. Mike

    btw...heard on the radio this morning that during last summer, James texted a fellow NBA-er and wrote, "yo, this is King James." Just goes to show how highly he thinks of himself.

    June 13, 2011 at 10:23 am | Report abuse |
  10. Dave

    Lebron was right about one thing. After Cleveland and others that were hoping for his failure finish laughing, go to sleep, and wake up the next morning, Cleveland will still be Cleveland and Lebron will probably still be happy he doesn't have to live in that miserable city any more.

    June 13, 2011 at 10:23 am | Report abuse |
    • nmc913

      youre kidding, right? He still does live there during off-season. He has a house in Akron and his kids still attend school there.

      June 13, 2011 at 10:26 am | Report abuse |
    • Shoedog

      and he still won't have a ring

      June 13, 2011 at 10:28 am | Report abuse |
  11. Mike

    Enjoyed seeing Bosh cry last night after the game since he felt like he had wag his tongue out and show boat after each made basket. The only guy worth anything on that team is Wade.

    June 13, 2011 at 10:25 am | Report abuse |
  12. goobernutt

    L.J. just got a massive slice of humble pie, the arrogance of assumption came crashing down with the realization that the Western conference is still the dominant conference. You don't just mail it in and get your ring. Secondly you gotta be a man and congratulate the other players face to face, Dwayne Wade was man enough to do that inspite of a difficult lose he still shook hands and congratulated the Dallas players. L.J. time to grow up! You made a spectacle of yourself and humiliated a whole city in the process. Time to man-up, or you'll be given a new nickname...Big Baby!

    June 13, 2011 at 10:25 am | Report abuse |
  13. Notsomuch

    Laughing for what? The owner of the Cavaliers and their beloved fans were at home watching while during his first try with a brand new team he made it to the finals. Not a bad start at all...Laughing or not he is gone Cleveland...He left, Get over it...The owner, and the fans should channel their hatred and irrelevant emotion to recruit a better team to beat LeBron and the Heat next year, make it to the FINALS and WIN if they really want to laugh...otherwise they need to have a seat!

    June 13, 2011 at 10:28 am | Report abuse |
  14. yotube

    People need to get over the Lebron hate already. Stop acting like girls. If you think about it, Lebron is just doing it the American way, which isn't a very noble way. But it doesn't make you any better to hate on it. FYI, I am from San Antonio. Not many people in Texas actually like the Mavs at all either. But we think Cuban is much worse for the league than Lebron could ever be. At the end of the day, Lebron is just playing basketball.

    June 13, 2011 at 10:28 am | Report abuse |
    • Observer

      wrong. If LeBron was just playing basketball at the end of the day, then nobody would have beef with him. But he's making childish videos at the end of the day. He's spewing ignorance at press conferences at the end of the day. And he's making a self-promoting spectacle out of his move to the Heat, at the end of several days. So he's really not just playing basketball, that's actually what people WISH he would do, because on the court he's got a lot of improving to do.

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

    So riddle me this, Batman:

    LeBron's reaction to his critics boiled down to: "I'm rich, you're not, so there."

    Exactly what is it we're supposed to like about this arrogant, spoiled man-child? Can someone please explain it to me?

    As far as I can tell, his only redeeming quality right now is that he hasn't killed any dogs.

    June 13, 2011 at 10:28 am | Report abuse |
    • Liberals Suc

      +1, the guy is King Jerk.

      June 13, 2011 at 10:33 am | Report abuse |
    • Nomad

      Yeah. Not much to like with this piece of work other than he lost again. Poetic justice and a better TEAM has proven that no one player is bigger than the game.

      June 13, 2011 at 10:38 am | Report abuse |
    • Dude2000

      It's funny because I never had any feelings towards LaBron one way or the other until I heard the bull that was flying out of his mouth towards the "haters" yesterday. I now officially a hater as well. This guy is a total d0uche bag and I hope he never wins a championship.

      June 13, 2011 at 10:44 am | Report abuse |
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