Why Fans Hate Winners....
First, allow me to quantify this statement with a bit of reasoning. When Lebron was drafted into the league, I along with EVERY possible basketball fan on EARTH, wanted to see if this kid could live up to the hype surrounding him. Without ANY DOUBT, Lebron James did that during his first few years in Cleveland. The basketball world LOVED him! We wanted to see him SUCCEED and win a championship for “down-trodden”, “never-wins-anything” Cleveland. Then it happens, Lebron “Takes His Talents To South Beach”. The HATE occurs, people that once wanted to see him SUCCEED, now want to see him FAIL. Why? Because of the now perceived inevitably of him...WINNING.
Some said, it was a smart business and career move. It effectively placed more power into the players' hands and not the owners' or the front-offices of NBA franchises. Besides, “no franchise is loyal to the player, so why should the player be loyal to a franchise”? But, the MAJORITY of basketball fans HATED the move and saw it as, “the best player in the league taking the easy way out to WIN”. Point was though, regardless of how you felt about him doing it...HE WON and the HATRED began.
Now fast forward to Kevin Durant(KD) - almost the same type of scenario, except KD was seen as already having all he needed to win a championship with Oklahoma and Westbrook, by many NBA fans. Everybody held that opinion...except the one who was actually PLAYING with Westbrook...Kevin Durant. In KD's obvious opinion, he would not and could not win with Westbrook.
That's what also GALL'S us as FANS. KD didn't agree with our assessment. But, what people don't realize and HATE it when someone puts it in our faces, is that EVERYONE else's opinion doesn't matter. Because when it really comes down to it, only ONE person's opinion matters...the one who's actually going through the experience. So, from KD's point of view, if he wanted to WIN, he had to leave WESTBROOK. (Not Oklahoma...but, that's another article entirely)
Now, some fans kind of rolled with it at first. KD was a FAN FAVORITE. So, if he doesn't believe he can win with Westbrook, OK. We get it. After all KD's basketball IQ is accepted as higher than the rest of us, so we can understand. But, when he CHOSE the Warriors, the TEAM that was already considered the best TEAM on the planet. The TEAM that had just beat you in an HISTORIC come back fashion – THEN - just like in the LeBron situation, the HATRED began.
Why...because KD's basketball IQ directed him to join a TEAM instead of becoming just another NBA star WITHOUT a RING? His basketball IQ just GUARANTEED him a CHAMPIONSHIP by going to the best TEAM! Which means (to most fans) KD didn't EARN it...in EVERYONE else's opinion. Even though WE (those same people) LAUD the game as a TEAM sport and loft CHAMPIONSHIPS because they require a TEAM effort. Is the hypocrisy coming through? But, remember...when it comes down to it, only ONE opinion matters...HIS, Kevin Durant's.
This is why I can't listen to commentators like Nick Wright. On the show, FOX's “First Things First” which aired Nov. 24, 2017, reporting on GSW's loss to Oklahoma the night before. He opens his monologue by mentioning a quote from KD's mom. He goes so far as to ask his counterpart, Cris Carter, if his mother ever commented on his career. First off, Cris Carter is almost 50. When he played, NO ONE CARED what his mother thought!! But now, with the advent of “social media” every aspect has the potential to become a story. However, any RATIONAL thinking individual would then ask this question to Nick, "WHAT does KD's mom, ANSWERING a question that was ASKED of her (she didn't just run after a reporter and say I have a statement to make about my son) have to do with KD??? Answer – ABSOLUTELY nothing. It's only more proof of my point...WE HATE WINNERS BECAUSE THERE CAN ONLY BE ONE.
Look, let's not act like Westbrook is just some All-American NBA player that the NATION loves....NO. He's not. Fact is, Westbrook is NOT A WINNER! He's about WESTBROOK. If KD wants to get through this and continue to make HISTORY with the TEAM he chose, then he's going to need to GROW the HELL UP, SHUT UP and simply PLAY BASKETBALL! That will SQUASH ALL of this petty talk that HE to a LARGE degree has BROUGHT ONTO HIMSELF, with his words and actions...or lack thereof, depending on your point of view.
But like I said, regardless of if he does this or not, people will still be people and the majority of people HATE WINNERS. They side with the LOSER because that's what most relate to simply because physics only allows us to have ONE WINNER...and because MOST PEOPLE are use to LOSING, they side or relate with the...LOSER!
Here's my point, just think about it for a second...if WESTBROOK was the NBA champion, we'd be talking about how CLASSLESS he is. But, because KD is now the champion (and will continue to be because he chose a TEAM over an NBA star) people are talking about how SOFT he is and how they feel he didn't EARN his ring, even though he had to beat who they most consider the GREATEST basketball player today (Lebron) to do it, along with his cast of NBA stars (Kyrie, Love, etc).
But, this is ULTIMATELY why we LOVE SPORTS....because when it comes down to it, what matters is what happens during the GAME. Bottom line, WESTBROOK is up on KD right now. So, KD needs to (and I'll say it again) MAN UP, SHUT UP, and PLAY BASKETBALL! If he does that, some HATERS will continue to hate. But some (a la Nick Wright, etc.) will become (what we like to call) bandwagon RIDERS, and he'll go down as one of the greatest CHAMPIONS of all time and Russ will be left as just another NBA star WITHOUT a RING!
Just think about that...then answer this question...
Which would you choose?
The 2017 NBA FINALS have been a "hot-bed" of endless debate and conversation from topics of, "Who's the GOAT"? to "Are We witnessing the Best Team in History in the Golden State Warriors"? These debates are on-going and will really never actually reach any plausible conlusion except for the "factual opinions" we ALL harbor, to some degree.
But, recently I read something interesting in the "YouTube" comment section, under a FOX Sports broadcast for "UNDISPUTED", with Shannon Sharpe and Skip Bayless. The comment stated, that Stephen Curry was the "BIGGEST FRONT RUNNER" he's ever seen.
For those that are confused by the term, "FRONT-RUNNER", allow me to briefly define it for you. "FRONT-RUNNER"; An individual who only excels when they have an obvious or obligatory advantage over their opponent.
So, it therefore AMAZES me how LBJ fans try to call any other player or team a "front-runner"...LOL, STOP!
"LBJ fans" are the "fans" of the BIGGEST FRONT-RUNNER of ALL-TIME!! That's the only thing he deserves the GOAT for! EVERY scouting report shows, during the PLAYOFFS, if you can jump on a LBJ team with ANY lead at halftime at the start of the 3rd quarter and make that run last for the majority of that quarter, any LBJ led team WILL FOLD because HE FOLDS without a LEAD or a CHEERING CROWD!!! Period.
The ONLY time I've seen different, was this LAST playoff game (GSW vs CAVS, game 3)...LBJ ACTUALLY attempted to play through a losing 3rd quarter. I was indeed impressed at this 1st SHOW of potential HEART.
We also ALL know (outside of LeBron fans) the ring last year was GIVEN to him BY THE LEAGUE! Case and point; Not ONLY was Draymond suspended for a game (for NO REASON) but they also EJECTED the league's 2-TIME MVP!! WHEN HAVE YOU EVER SEEEN THAT HAPPEN IN THE NBA FINALS or ANY OTHER SPORT'S CHAMPIONSHIP game or series?!?! PLUS, Steph is PROVING (notice, he NEVER says it) he was hurt and playing on ONE LEG last year in the FINALS! So, if ANY championship is TAINTED, it was Lebron's, last year!
It was a BRILLIANT MARKETING move for the league. They effectively boost their MARKET value by ensuring their LARGEST investment at the time, (LBJ) is in the media SPOTLIGHT as a champion, while at the same time, severing ANY OBLIGATION to do it AGAIN for him. Effectively freeing them to now DIVERT their MARKETING investments away from ONE MAN and back into the IDEA and IMAGE of basketball being a TEAM-DRIVEN SPORT!! GSW has BUILT the PERFECT IMAGE for the FUTURE of the league! BRILLIANT!!
Given all of this, its easy to understand LeBron's penchant for "FRONT-RUNNING. See, LBJ was ANOINTED the king of the NBA, BEFORE he ever bounced an NBA ball. LEGACY'S aren't GIVEN. You CANNOT just be GRANTED the title of Greatest Of All Time. You MUST EARN this and it can ONLY be EARNED through the BLOOD, SWEAT and TEARS of HARD WORK, WILL and the PASSION to be the BEST no matter what!
LBJ, has NEVER had to go through the FIRES of LOSING, NOT BEING THE BEST, WORKING on FREE THROWS, MID-RANGE SHOOTING, FOOT WORK, just to get better because he was always just GIFTED with GOD-GIVEN size and ability to play ANY SPORT he chose.
Greatness IS NOT something you are simpy BORN WITH. GREATNESS must be EARNED and PROVEN. LBJ has never had to WORK to prove who everyone told him he was...now Steph Curry and the GSWs have changed that.