Whew...that didn't take long. Chris Ballard of cnnsi.com has officially entered himself into psychological counseling. His man-crush of LeBrick has produced an article dedicated to how great he his. Just witness some of these statements:
"I can't let everybody know everything about LeBron,"—as spoken by, yes, you guessed it, LeBrick himself. Nice use of third person...which he has been known to do from time to time.
"So James worked to develop what Jent calls a "calmer" shot. This meant better balance êwhen firing on the move, James has to contend with the considerable momentum created by his weight—and keeping his right elbow locked at his side so that, as James puts it, 'the ball will go straight instead of veering off sometimes.'"—I mentioned this before (actually twice) and I'm shocked that he's been working on it so much because his shot is still severely flawed. But this shouldn't be very surprising...he's the "king", so why mess with perfection?? When David Thorpe, Mark Kreigel, Chris Ballard, etc., etc... are singing your praises every single article, why bother adapting??
"I think before, that's what separated Kobe from him, but now LeBron has stepped it up to his level."—as spoken by an Eastern Conference scout. Gee, I wonder which team he works for?? As absurd as that statement is, the following is downright laughable.
"In essence James has become the coolest toy any defense-inclined coach could imagine. When the Cavs play the Hornets, for example, James can not only guard the 6-foot Paul, but he can also switch to 6' 9", 240-pound power forward David West on a pick-and-roll."—Uh, by guarding Chris Paul, do you mean shutting him down or just being the defensive player assigned to him??
LeBrick still has a hard time with smaller point guards (he does defend bigger power forwards a little better). He has a very difficult time with anticipation (especially out on the perimeter, which is why he gets beat to the basket so often).
The rest of the article is dedicated to LeBrick's impending greatness. Oh sure, there are a few critiques here and there. I was, however, extremely shocked not to see any mention (I may have missed it...) about LeBrick's game-winning shot against the Warriors.
Everyone was salivating over it, but few people noticed (or just ignored) the fact that LeBrick's "awesome" defense resulted in two perimeter jumpers by Stephen Jackson. That's right, the "King," who is the greatest defensive player in the history of the game, gave up two key perimeter jumpers in a one-on-one situation that could've cost his team the game. Fortunately, he was able to hit a fantastic game-winning shot that restored order in the LeBrick Kool-Aid Kingdom.
This article is really intended to illustrate that LeBrick's defense is still light-years away from what boneheads like Ballard make it out to be.