Letter still an issue for LeBron
One reason, if not the major reason, that LeBron James has taken so long to decide whether to play in Miami or Cleveland
next season is the infamous letter Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert wrote
about James after the superstar left Cleveland in 2010, sources said.
In the letter, typed in Comic Sans font, Gilbert called James a
"coward" and mocked the many nicknames and catchphrases attached to
James, such as "King James," "The Chosen One" and "Witness."
The letter remained on the Cavs' website for the past four years until the team removed it earlier this week.
Although James recognizes that informing Cavs fans and Gilbert, who
was told of James' decision to leave Cleveland in a telephone call five
minutes before it was announced, on national television was a mistake,
he is still wrestling with whether to return to play for Gilbert's team.
"If it wasn't for that letter, this would've been done a while ago," one source said.
A Cavs source downplayed the letter to ESPN's Josina Anderson on
Friday morning, saying that there was "no indication from them to us at
this point either way" on the letter playing a part in holding up
Although there have been rumblings about Gilbert and James clearing
up their differences in the past, no such discussion or meeting has been
confirmed. What is known is that Gilbert has never issued a public
apology to James.
Sources close to James said Thursday that the four-time MVP wanted to
speak with his family before making his decision. Many around the NBA
have wondered what there was left to talk about, but James' concerns
about the Gilbert letter is a plausible explanation.
While league executives wait for James to make his announcement, many
refuse to believe that he'll return to Cleveland to play for Gilbert.
Some even believe it would be hypocritical after how powerfully James
spoke out against Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling after racist comments by Sterling were made public in May.
James was the first player to speak out against Sterling, saying he had no place in the NBA.