As I was surfing the interweb; I came across an ESPN.com poll which asked, “Which NBA player would you pay your money to see?” I was amazed to see that Lebron James had garnered 62% of the vote. Sure, I am going to say that I live in the Cleveland-area and have attended many Cavalier games. So it would not surprise you that I have already seen and gotten bored with the antics of King James.
However, the one thing that I have noticed is that Lebron is starting to receive, “The MJ treatment.” This idea was brought up by a former colleague of mine at the radio station I used to work at. The Michael Jordan treatment in the simplest of definition is that we come to expect great things from a certain player (in this case, Lebron James) that if he has a great performance, more people will notice it. If you have an average performance however, people will notice that as well and hold you to the standard of the great performance.
I usually do not buy into these arguments but to be honest this has gotten to the point where I actually believe this is the case. We all know Lebron dropped 55 points against the Bucks, the world rejoiced that the King dropped 55. Then in the next game against the Detroit Pistons, he had a pedestrian 22 points. The Cavaliers won both of the games but Lebron got more pub for the 55 point performance and some could state why did he not have a comparable performance in the Pistons game.
The treatment that Michael Jordan received is very similar; Jordan on any given night could lead the Bulls to a win with a lopsided victory but not contribute anything on the score sheet. Some would say that Jordan had an off-night. However, when he would drop 50 points in a close Bulls victory, everyone would marvel at the brilliance of Jordan.
To put it in another light, it would be comparable to having a one-night stand with a famous Hollywood actress. For this example, let us use Ginnifer Goodwin of Big Love fame and the movie, “He’s Just Not That Into You”
Let’s say you hook up with her for one night, and then you tell your boys. They want to hear about it and congratulate you on it. However, every other girl you now hook up with will pale in comparison to when you hooked up with Ginnifer Goodwin.
You have set the bar at Ginnifer Goodwin. I’m not eluding that you are not going to receive the same pleasure or stop enjoying sex. But you probably have reached the pinnacle of women that you have slept with. Your bro’s do not want to hear about that skank you hooked with at the bar but the story about the time that you hooked up with Ginnifer Goodwin. Every other woman has to be either be Ginnifer Goodwin or hotter than Ginnifer Goodwin. You see the hole you dug yourself into?
That’s the interesting fate that these stars enter themselves into from the fans and the media. Lebron is now just the latest individual to join the club and now he will face the scrutiny of fans, media, and even other players by the weird double-bias. The one positive for Lebron is that he is now a member of the club instead of not being one at all. (Wait..that might actually mean that you should hook up with Ginnifer Goodwin, after all.)