Anger towards LeBron James’ departure from Cleveland has slowly died down since the summer of 2010.
Maybe the excessive coverage last season of LeBron’s failures drove fans crazy enough to gravitate toward LeBron, instead of further away. (At this time a year ago, television outlets still dissected why LeBron passed the ball in the final seconds of an ALL STAR GAME.)
Maybe it died down when LeBron won his first championship only nine months ago.
Maybe it died down last summer when LeBron, despite so much dislike towards him in the summer of 2010, suited up for the Olympics to help lead USA to a gold medal.
It’s tough to tell.
Whatever the reason, it’s hard to believe this would’ve happened in LeBron’s first game in Cleveland since “The Decision”.
It’s not just one overexcited fan that wants LeBron to return, either.
According to a poll from the Cleveland Plain Dealer, 52 percent of voters said they want LeBron to return to Cleveland. 35 percent still do not want him to return and, as polarizing as LeBron has become, 13 percent are still undecided.
Over 3,000 votes have already been submitted.
The excitement comes from LeBron’s looming free agency, which could start 17 months from now if he opts out of his current contract. If that happens, the Cavaliers can make a run for the three-time MVP who spent his first seven seasons in Cleveland.
There’s a lot to look at already on why or why not LeBron should stay in Miami, but a lot of it isn’t worth it (yet).
17 months ago, the NBA was in the middle of a lockout that could’ve wiped out the 2012 season, Derrick Rose was the reigning MVP the season before, and a few all stars (Steve Nash, Dwight Howard, Chris Paul) were not in Los Angeles yet.
The same can be said for Cleveland which, 17 months ago, would not have wanted LeBron to return to a place he once left in flames.
Coming to a conclusion right now about where LeBron will or should go is foolish, but it’s still fun to think and talk about.
(Or act on if you’re a Cavalier fan plotting to run onto the court. Don’t be that guy.)