67RIEFNS No. 49: LeBron James back in Cleveland

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The NBA is full of talent, personality and suspense. During the offseason, It’s easy to forget how wonderful the league can be. So, I’ve assembled 67 Reasons I’m Excited For Next Season (67RIEFNS). They’ll be presented in no particular order.

In reality, LeBron James’ free agent decisions in 2010 and 2014 were fairly similar. Both times, he left a very good team for one with even better championship odds while relinquishing a little money to do so.

The biggest difference? PR.

In 2010, LeBron went on national television to leave the Cavaliers and then participated in a gaudy pep rally where he predicted “not two, not three…” titles. He pulled no punches, announcing to the world he planned to team with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh and dominate.

LeBron might have the exact same intent in 2014. I suspect he does. But he’s presented himself as humbler, a noble servant of Northeast Ohio coming home to help the community. The letter in Sports Illustrated was a nice touch, a chance for a professional writer to communicate the message in the most eloquent terms.

So, I see through the optics.

I just don’t care.

LeBron returning to Cleveland is cool. Even if his motives are less than fully altruistic, I still believe hometown pride influenced his decision. The Cavaliers – nay, all of Cleveland is starved for a championship. It would be such an incredible story if LeBron delivers one.