For weeks now we all have heard the speculation regarding where LeBron James will play next season. We have heard those say he is definitely staying home, some say that he would play in Chicago, while others saying he will play for the New Jersey Nets. Everyone has had an opinion and every "expert" knows where LeBron is going to play.
However, the only certainty is that later tonight we all will know where King James will play this season. With all the rumors leaking from various sources regarding Lebron's future since the Cavaliers second round playoff exit at the hand of the Boston Celtics, I have paid close to attention to exactly when and what is being leaked.
So with reports coming out today that LeBron is "leaning towards" joining Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh on the Miami Heat; I am not buying it one bit. Logically everything that has been said about LeBron going to South Beach just doesn't make sense to me at all.
Consider that league sources have told Yahoo Sports " LeBron James inner circle told multiple NBA officials and players Wednesday night that the two-time MVP is leaning towards joining Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh with the Miami Heat." Then ask yourself why would LeBron (who is concerned about his brand and keeping his decision suspenseful) have his camp leak out where he is going less that 24 hours before he announces his decision.
Because King James wants his announcement to be an event (which it has turned into with all the speculation prior to his hour long special tonight on ESPN) it would not shock me if his camp has been leaking the wrong information to the media all along. The media's coverage of the "King James Free Agency Soap Opera" has been rather interesting to say the least. After James was knocked out of the NBA Playoffs almost every "expert" preached how it made sense for James to play for the Bulls and many predicted he would go to Chicago.
Now less than 24 hours before his announcement and with the Bulls recently adding power forward Carlos Boozer, Chicago is rarely mentioned at all. In fact, what is more interesting is the team who is clearly a major player to sign the top free agent and has met with Lebron's camp twice, the New York Knicks are not shown much respect at all. Very few in the media have given the Knicks much of a chance at all.
The lack of attention on the Knicks as well as to some degree James returning to Cleveland is not coincidental. James camp wants it that way so that everyone is focused on the wrong destination and his decision comes off as much more shocking.
It is also hard for me to ignore the location of tonight's announcement. Greenwich, CT is only 13 miles from the Knicks training facility in Westchester, NY and I find it hard to believe that he would choose a New York area suburb to announce that he is going to Miami. But then again maybe LeBron really just loves the drama and wants toy with both the heart strings of fans in New York and Cleveland.
I am aware that many will counter that James is in the New York area for Carmelo Anthony's wedding this weekend and he is just making his announcement there out of convenience. Again, I am not buying that as I think if LeBron is indeed announcing that he is going to Miami then I think he would be a bit more tasteful and announce his decision near South Beach.
Speaking of going to South Beach, consider Lebron's ego.
It was reported that James was actively trying to pursue Bosh to join him to play in Cleveland but Bosh didn't want to play in Ohio. Wade also was trying to recruit Bosh to come to Miami in which he was successful. Considering James' ego and desire to build his brand I have a hard time believing that he lost the Bosh recruiting war to Wade and now will join Wade's team in Miami.
James wants to build his brand as I have stated before and desperately wants to mark his own legacy on the game. He can do that either remaining in Cleveland or playing under the bright lights of Madison Square Garden where a talented sidekick in Amar'e Stoudemire is waiting in the wings.
Surely as we get closer to "The Decision" at 9 PM EST tonight more sources will leak information regarding where the King will hold court. However, the truth will be revealed when LeBron finally speaks. Some will be shocked if his answer goes against everything they have been told to be true, while other will not be stunned at all if is answer differs from what he reportedly is "leaning towards."
Until then follow the wise old words of Benjamin Franklin, Believe none of what you hear and half of what you see."