We are going to do some time traveling, so hang on and enjoy the ride.
It's a few months into the future and the NBA season has started. LeBron has just fallen asleep on the Cavaliers jet, fresh off a win, feeling good and satisfied, knowing his team is rolling along for another successful year.
You could see his face smiling, except for the darkened jet interior. He's quietly snoring with only young guys in the back of the plane heard laughing, as they share game stories over poker.
He is deep asleep, deep, deep into dreaming... (cue dreamy music)
As he is browsing through a Goodwill store for some new threads, LeBron hears a faint voice coming from a brass bottle.
"Let me out!"
Staring at the bottle, he says, "What the hey! Are you talking to me?!"
"What do you think, your highness? Yeah, get me out of this thing, and PLEASE! Do it now! It's hot in here! I just came from Phoenix, and this damn thing ain't got no air conditioning!!"
"How do I get you out?"
Sarcastically the voice from the bottle yells back, "Just pick up the bottle and read the instructions. Oh, please, not someone who can't read?!"
"I can read, let's see, it says: Easy to follow instructions in English, Spanish instructions on reverse side: Rub bottle, release Genie, and get three wishes, guaranteed or your money back, less shipping and handling."
LeBron now quickly starts to rub the bottle.
The voice from the bottle moans with pleasure, "Ah, that feels good! A little lower please, that's it, a little to the right, you got it!"
As greenhouse friendly smoke begins to leave the bottle, a genie appears before LeBron James.
Now this Genie is HUGE, more than seven feet tall and weighing maybe 350 pounds! LeBron notices he is wearing a rather dapper genie silk suit, adorned in red, yellow and white colors, and wearing some funky Chinese sneakers. And like typical genies, he has one bright shiny bald head.
The genie is now grinning from ear to ear and says, "Hi, I'm the 'Big Genie' of the bottle. Your wish is my command!"
LeBron, not even hesitating, knows what he wants. He pulls out his wallet, takes out a card, and starts to read from it his three wishes. "Been saving this card for one of those 'sell your soul to Devil thingys' but I guess it will work with you. Here's my contract demands, I mean my wishes. Now you can fulfill these right?"
The "Big Genie" laughs hardily, "Don't doubt me and make me mad. I can do anything!"
"Okay then, here's my first wish. Make me the strongest, the fastest, the quickest, most talented player, the NBA has ever seen."
The "Big Genie" is again laughing and saying, "That's it? No problem. Done!"
"Good. Now for my second wish. I want to be the first NBA player to make one billion dollars."
The "Big Genie" rolls his eyes and shakes his head thinking what a waste of a wish. But he gives LeBron a nod confirming "Your wish is my command!"
"And for my third wish, I want an NBA Championship!"
The "Big Genie" suddenly looks confused and distraught. He starts to mumble and stutter, "I'm...I'm...not so sure...I.....I...can do that one, that's a pretty tall order."
"But you promised!"
"Yeah I sort of did, hey look! It's Kobe!" as the "Big Genie" points away. Then he quickly returns to the bottle.
LeBron is now grabbing the bottle and rubbing it as hard as he can, yelling, "But you promised! You promised!"
A voice is now heard loudly. "Why in the heck are you rubbing my head, LeBron?!" A startled Shaq, sitting next to him on the plane is yelling.
"Sorry Shaq, I was just having a bad dream."
And the moral of this story.....
Be careful what you wish for with the "Big Genie," it might, just might, not come out as expected.
Authors note: All in Phoenix had a similar wish when Shaq came to town. Shaq didn't play bad, in fact, he surprised many by his good play. But it didn't happen like expected. And now the "Big Genie," with his $20 million contract is headed to Cleveland. Hopefully, he will not prove to be the "Evil Genie" ruining Cleveland's chances at a Finals.
Spending $20 million on an older part-time center is one great risk. I know everyone is wishing, and hoping, some even praying for their dreams to come true. I don't want to shatter your dreams, but look what happened to the Phoenix Suns before you start celebrating prematurely. They had a great team when he arrived, and became a Lottery team, when he left.
Even if it turns out less than you like, I hope you enjoy Shaq as much as we did in Arizona. He's funny even when you are losing.
Best wishes Cavaliers Fans!