Shook Ankles: Dwyane Wade Crosses Up Kirk Hinrich, And All We Talk About Is LeBron
Last week, a latest chapter in basketball’s least colorful narrative (that is LeBron James’ steamy relationship with the fourth quarter) was written. It was written because Udonis Haslem missed a wide open jump shot. Because Udonis Haslem missed a jump shot, millions of theories and mystical explanations were concocted, then explained all across the internet. Because millions of theories and mystical explanations were concocted, then explained all across the internet, LeBron James will react by tweaking his relationship with the fourth quarter. When LeBron James tweaks his relationship with the fourth quarter, the next chapter will be written. And on and on the cycle goes.
Questions are being asked each and every day but there’s no real furthering of worthwhile development; no answers will be made available until June. What LeBron does nine times out of 10 on a basketball court can either be described as correct, smart, or amazing. Sometimes all three words apply. It’s fine to judge him for his disappearing act in last year’s NBA Finals, but to critique each and every end-game decision with a magnifying glass reserved for the postseason is annoying and pointless.
It’s strange to say, but the move seen above, in it’s late game context, poured a thimble’s worth of gasoline on the flames. Every time Dwyane Wade sees success, the national reaction instantly becomes “Where was LeBron while Wade saved the day?” If James produces his normal brilliance for 47 minutes and then misses a shot to tie or win the game with less than a minute remaining, the game’s story revolves around that minor detail as opposed to the bigger picture. We all know James will never shake the criticism until he wins a championship, but—with so many other/better story lines playing themselves out during the league’s current era of intrigue and athletically led grandeur—in many ways, both the league and the people who enjoy covering it, will feel immense relief once he does.