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View Full Version : Should Lebron have taken the shot last night or no?



Pace Maker
03-03-2012, 06:50 PM
For those of you who don't know, Miami was in a thriller last night in Utah. Lebron James dominated the fourth quarter in which he scored 17 points on 8-9 shooting. (35/10/6 on the night). Despite all this however, Miami found themselves down 1 with 4.5 seconds left. Lebron receives the inbound pass, gets doubled, and dishes it to Udonis Haslem who misses the shot. Do you guys think Lebron made the right decision?

You can watch the play here:
http://allball.blogs.nba.com/2012/03/03/pointcounterpoint-should-lebron-have-taken-the-last-shot/

--
In my opinion, him giving the ball to Haslem was perfectly justifiable. It was the correct basketball play, and its not like MJ never gave the big shot to Kerr or Paxson.

ilive4sports
03-03-2012, 06:55 PM
I'm not a LeBron hater at all, and was the pass to Haslem a good play? Yeah I think so. BUT I think he should have kept going at the basket. Chances are you are getting a foul on that play and a decent look near the rim. LeBron is damn good at the rim, should have kept driving imo. It wasn't that great of a double team as he already got past the one guy.

If LeBron had a Robert Horry or Steve Kerr on his team, he wouldn't get near the amount of **** he does. More often than not, he is making the smart play.

righteouscool
03-03-2012, 06:58 PM
That is a good basketball play. Lebron gets far to much blame IMO. It is amazing that he has such a pass first mentality for someone that could be considered one of the most dominant players ever.

Nuntius
03-03-2012, 07:03 PM
No. He made the right decision. Haslem just missed.

naptownmenace
03-03-2012, 07:04 PM
I think passing was the right decision but considering how hot he was I was surprised his passed up the opportunity to take it to the hoop.

Also, I'm surprised no one has mentioned that if DWade had made his free throws they wouldn't have been down 1 point and in that situation in the first place.

Kstat
03-03-2012, 07:06 PM
It's sad that this is even a topic.

Udonis Haslem is a professional getting paid to make wide open mid range shots. He could not have been any more open. LeBron was getting double teamed.

Was Jordan a coward for passing to John Paxon or Stever Kerr?

How Haslem is skipping by on this is beyond me. He could not possibly have had an easier perimeter shot.

Pace Maker
03-03-2012, 07:07 PM
I think passing was the right decision but considering how hot he was I was surprised his passed up the opportunity to take it to the hoop.

Also, I'm surprised no one has mentioned that if DWade had made his free throws they wouldn't have been down 1 point and in that situation in the first place.

Wade also had a very costly foul giving Devin Harris the And 1.

Its funny how Wade gets a free pass, and yet people will go as far as to call him the "Batman" of the team.

Steagles
03-03-2012, 07:09 PM
He chokes, of course he passed. He wants to blame Haslem rather than himself.

Pacer Fan
03-03-2012, 07:09 PM
He had the options no doubt, it's his decision to make a play and Haslem didn't get it done. Is it a cop out for Lebron to pass it to him and not raise up and shoot it or drive to the basket? Maybe, guess we need to ask him and the coach. Do I give a crap? Hell no, they lost, I'm Happy!

Nuntius
03-03-2012, 07:09 PM
Also, I'm surprised no one has mentioned that if DWade had made his free throws they wouldn't have been down 1 point and in that situation in the first place.

This. I am not a fan of LeBron for various reasons but he shouldn't get hate for things like this play.

Wade (who I like more than LeBron) made a lot of mistakes to give Jazz the win. He committed a foul on a 3 point shot, he made a bad foul on Harris in Jazz's last possession, he missed a free throw and he also missed a shot. Basically, Wade did all he could for Heat to lose the match.

xIndyFan
03-03-2012, 07:10 PM
No. He made the right decision. Haslem just missed.

this. there are lots of reasons to hate on LBJ, but this is not one of them.

from a purely selfish pacer motive, this could get james to pass less and shoot more. it would make him easier to defend.

Anthem
03-03-2012, 07:14 PM
If LeBron was a Pacer, I'd have cheered that play. It's a good basketball play.

Since LeBron plays for the Heat, I'm really hoping he says "I'm never doing that again." Anything that makes the Heat play more like a team is something that's bad for us.

Kstat
03-03-2012, 07:15 PM
He chokes, of course he passed. He wants to blame Haslem rather than himself.

...an example of other great "choke" moments throughout history....

I especially like the second clip where Kerr tells Jordan he'll be ready if he's open ,and Jordan tells Kerr "**** you, I'm the star and I'm shooting that **** no matter what!"


<iframe width="420" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/Csl855Wtu_4" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

<iframe width="420" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/S2BlOTeoZVE" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

PacerGuy
03-03-2012, 07:43 PM
Kobe: "SHOOT THE BALL!!!"
The Runaway Bride strikes again...
And before I read another post downplaying this by saying it was the "right basketball play", IT WAS NOT! It can't be the "right basketball play" when he (the best active basketball player on the planet) never even coinsidered taking the shot himself!!! He is not Steve Nash, he is LeBron Frick'n James!!! Was Haslem open - yes. Do I like my chances better with LeBron taking it to the hoop - Hell Yes! Problem is, I get LeBron taking it strong at crunch time about as much as I get Hedi Klum outside of my dreams - NEVER!

Say what you want, support the "good basketball play" all you want, but fool me once, shame on You, fool me twice, shame on Me, fool me for 7+ seasons and you're not fooling, you are just a Fool.

Bottom line is LeBron he "mouses up" when the game is on the line, every time, & this gets him eatem alive (just ask the Mamba!).

Hibbert
03-03-2012, 07:52 PM
It's sad that this is even a topic.

Udonis Haslem is a professional getting paid to make wide open mid range shots. He could not have been any more open. LeBron was getting double teamed.

Was Jordan a coward for passing to John Paxon or Stever Kerr?

How Haslem is skipping by on this is beyond me. He could not possibly have had an easier perimeter shot.

It's a topic cause Lebron has been criticized the past year for choking and passing up last second shots and he continues to do so. You can point the finger at a lot of different things here but the point is he continues to show everyone that he lacks confidence taking the big shots in the end. Lebron also gets paid and gets paid a lot more than Haslem, who had four points on the night, you don't want Haslem taking the last shot of the game when you are down.

Nuntius
03-03-2012, 07:58 PM
And before I read another post downplaying this by saying it was the "right basketball play", IT WAS NOT!


Look, I don't care if LeBron mouses up during crunch time and defers to someone else. I don't like LeBron as a player and I am not a supporter of the Heat. If he helps the Heat to lose then all the better for me as I don't like them as a team (well, I do like some of their role players but that's it).

However, he made the right play. I don't care that he's LeBron James. He's still a human being. He's not Superman. I'd prefer someone to take an open shoot (especially since Haslem specializes in this particular shot) than any player in the world taking a shot with 2 players in his face.

Major Cold
03-03-2012, 07:59 PM
Was Jordan a coward for passing to John Paxon or Stever Kerr?



http://i1076.photobucket.com/albums/w460/npowell4christ/larry-bird_display_image.jpg

travmil
03-03-2012, 08:03 PM
How many times is it gonna be the right play? Was it right at the end of game 6 of the finals last year when the king acted like the ball was kryptonite?

Kstat
03-03-2012, 08:05 PM
How many times is it gonna be the right play? Was it right at the end of game 6 of the finals last year when the king acted like the ball was kryptonite?

that was on him. He wasn't being trapped, though.

Last night? It was the right play.

cgg
03-03-2012, 08:08 PM
Haslem is money from there. Wade passes it to him there all the time. If he's open there, and you're in a double team, you throw it to him.

Kstat
03-03-2012, 08:14 PM
Lebron also gets paid and gets paid a lot more than Haslem, who had four points on the night, you don't want Haslem taking the last shot of the game when you are down.

Jordan made a lot more than Steve Kerr.

Jordan made a lot more than John Paxon.

If there's anything that should determine who takes what shot in an NBA game, it's who makes more money than the next guy....

skyfire
03-03-2012, 08:19 PM
I read a stat somewhere that said LeBron has made 1 of his last 9 shots in the last 24secs of games, when trying to tie or go for the lead.

He made some crazy shots to even get them close in that game. Their spacing didn't seem very good on that last play. You'd expect Haslem to make that shot fairly often tho.

Nuntius
03-03-2012, 08:19 PM
How many times is it gonna be the right play?

Yesterday's play? Every time. It is the right play. Period.

For LeBron in general? I don't know and I don't care.

PacerGuy
03-03-2012, 08:26 PM
However, he made the right play. I don't care that he's LeBron James. He's still a human being. He's not Superman. I'd prefer someone to take an open shoot (especially since Haslem specializes in this particular shot) than any player in the world taking a shot with 2 players in his face.

Ho do we know? He passed it so fast I thought I heard a sonic boom.
Sure, Haslem had a open look, but does that make it theb RIGHT basketball paly? I will admitt it was a GOOD basketball play, but no way I cave on that being the RIGHT basketball play.
You might get credit for that answer right in a Michigan or Ohio State Grad class, but in Real Life Basketball 101, you like leBron, FAIL!

BlueNGold
03-03-2012, 08:30 PM
As much as I dislike LeBron, props to him for trying to make the right play rather than do it all on his own. There's a time and place for taking that shot though. I don't think that was the time. His team mates need to convert those shots and these are basically practice games for that.

Kstat
03-03-2012, 08:31 PM
Ho do we know? He passed it so fast I thought I heard a sonic boom.

...so he should have waited for the trap to close in and make the pass more difficult?



Sure, Haslem had a open look, but does that make it theb RIGHT basketball paly? I will admitt it was a GOOD basketball play, but no way I cave on that being the RIGHT basketball play.


...that's nice, but 30 out of 30 NBA coaches being paid to draw up gameplans would disagree with you, as well as those of us with common sense.


You might get credit for that answer right in a Michigan or Ohio State Grad class, but in Real Life Basketball 101, you like leBron, FAIL!

I don't even know what this is supposed to imply. I just know it's absurd.

Kstat
03-03-2012, 08:33 PM
I wish Kobe would be more aggressive. He passed that so quickly! Why didn't he just take both mavs himself?

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/2s4DUjHUBXc" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

Hibbert
03-03-2012, 08:39 PM
Jordan made a lot more than Steve Kerr.

Jordan made a lot more than John Paxon.

If there's anything that should determine who takes what shot in an NBA game, it's who makes more money than the next guy....

You seriously like to argue for what? You brought up the fact that Haslem gets paid to make shot in the NBA in the first place so I brought up the fact that Haslem isnt even a shooter and makes much less than Lebron.

MrHale
03-03-2012, 08:43 PM
Great play, found the guy who usually can net those mid range jumpers. I dont like lebron and even i think that was the right choice

Kstat
03-03-2012, 08:43 PM
Haslem is a career %50 shooter. If he can't make those shots anymore then that's the team's fault for not finding someone who can.

You can find D-league players that can make wide open 16-footers. This is not an elite skill.

Nuntius
03-03-2012, 08:44 PM
You seriously like to argue for what? You brought up the fact that Haslem gets paid to make shot in the NBA in the first place so I brought up the fact that Haslem isnt even a shooter and makes much less than Lebron.

Haslem is a shooter. This mid range shot is how he makes his living on offense.

Hibbert
03-03-2012, 08:49 PM
Haslem is a career %50 shooter. If he can't make those shots anymore then that's the team's fault for not finding someone who can.

Career %50 shooter from mid-range? Where he was last night? It doesn't matter what his percentage is for his career on FG%. This year he is 41% on FG's.

TheDavisBrothers
03-03-2012, 08:51 PM
Haslem is a shooter. This mid range shot is how he makes his living on offense.

exactly, that's the dudes bread & butter

Kstat
03-03-2012, 08:54 PM
Wade really should have just forced that shot at the rim. Everyone knows Haslem isn't a shooter....

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/njvMyzGLdwU" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

The non-shooting Haslem with both the game tying and game winning jumpers in the last 45 seconds.

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/ypEzvt6fIck" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

danman
03-03-2012, 08:58 PM
It's not even debatable. Stats-wise, there have been several recent studies of "clutch" superstars trying to hit last second shots. They're surprisingly bad at it, as a rule. That's generally because they're being challenged and heaving low percentage shots.

Not saying LeBron doesn't have an issue with sometimes being pass-first instead of going aggressively to the hoop. But come on. He was doubled and Haslem was wide open at 14 feet. Haslem had the shot.

This would not even be a story if it weren't for the LeBron "does he have the right stuff" subplot. Somebody always gets that crown -- Peyton Manning wore it for years.

The play was basketball 101.

Hibbert
03-03-2012, 08:59 PM
Haslem is a shooter. This mid range shot is how he makes his living on offense.

That's not what I'm saying though. You have Lebron James and Dwayne Wade on the court but you would rather have Udonis Haslem taking the last shot? Haslem isn't a shooter or a scorer, he isn't a scoring threat at all. Yes, he can make those shots and he has and will but quoting an article saying thats his bread and butter and all this is just plain wrong.

Hibbert
03-03-2012, 09:02 PM
Wade really should have just forced that shot at the rim. Everyone knows Haslem isn't a shooter....

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/njvMyzGLdwU" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

The non-shooting Haslem with both the game tying and game winning jumpers in the last 45 seconds.

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/ypEzvt6fIck" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

Yes, I too googled Udonis Haslem game winning shot and saw those two videos cause I was just curious if he ever had hit a game winner.

Kstat
03-03-2012, 09:02 PM
I want the best chance to score. That should be Udonis Haslem being wide open over LeBron forcing the ball into double coverage.

I assume Jordan wanted to score too, which is why he passed up championship-winning moments to get the ball to an open john paxon or steve kerr.

People that get their basketball knowledge from watching sportscenter don't understand that. Great basketball player don't want the glory play, they just want the winning play.

Nuntius
03-03-2012, 09:19 PM
That's not what I'm saying though. You have Lebron James and Dwayne Wade on the court but you would rather have Udonis Haslem taking the last shot? Haslem isn't a shooter or a scorer, he isn't a scoring threat at all. Yes, he can make those shots and he has and will but quoting an article saying thats his bread and butter and all this is just plain wrong.

1) I'm not quoting an article and say that's his bread and butter. I'm using my eyes. It's widely known even to someone like me who rarely watched NBA regularly before this year that Haslem's bread and butter is the mid range shot.

2) I'd rather have the one who has the best shot available at the current situation. By best shot I mean the shot that is as open as it can get and said player can hit it. So, I wouldn't want Foster or Amundson to take a wide open shot. I'd rather have Udonis Haslem, Vladimir Radmanovic or David West take a wide open jumper than Wade or LeBron driving and attempting a circus shot through 2 players.

The only player in the world that I'd like to get a shot off even if two defenders are on him is Dirk Nowitzki. Wanna know why? Because he is a 7 footer that can take enough separation on his shot and line up his elbows perfectly in order to take this shot as if it was a normal one.

mb221
03-03-2012, 09:45 PM
Some things that hadn't been mentioned here yet that I think adds to the LeBron should have shot side.. He was 8/9 in the 4th at that point and had hit some ridiculous long range jumpers. I'm not denying that the pass was a solid play in general basketball sense, but when you are LeBron and you are hot in the 4th, I just can't see him not taking another dribble or two and looking for his own shot. If after that extra dribble you still think it's not there, the pass still would have been.

PacerGuy
03-03-2012, 10:01 PM
The one thing I get from thread is that there are too many feel-goog, John Wooden wannabies on this board who are more concerned about being "right" then actually being right.
I get why LeBron has his supporters, & even moreso why he has then on "this play", but IMO you all just don't get the point.

Everyone wants to compare apples to oranges & justify it by calling both fruit. Fine, but you are not getting what you are ordered. Everyone wants to point to MJ passing to Paxson as justification for LeBron passing to Haslem, but no one has mentioned MJ kill'n C.Ehloe nor making B.Russell his bytch for the rest of time on earth. No one has mentioned MJ's 6 rings and a reputation of making those around him better, vs. LeBron's who has or is known for neither. No one has mentioned MJ's rep of being the most feared finisher in history vs. LeBron being known as a "quitter".
Ask Boston or Dallas players what they think of LeBron as a "finisher", then ask Cav & Heat fans what they thought of LeBron at crunch time of the biggest games. Now go talk to Bulls fans - or hell, go talk to the Laker fans! Kobe may have 1 less ring than MJ, but has more finals appearances, & he is the only person compared to having anything close to MJ's competitiveness. MJ is a GOAT (Greatest Of All Time), Kobe is nicknamed "The Mamba" (deadliest cold-blooded killer on earth), & LeBron?... "3 Quarters"?

Listen, give me the "Basketball 101's" about that being a "good play" all day, all night long, & I will never argue with you, but ask me to believe it was the RIGHT play & you will die waiting. You need to practice being big-time before you can be big time. Kobe was taking preasure shots @ 18 yrs old. MJ took the shot from day 1, but LeBron?

Vince Lanbardi once said something to the effect:
"Winning is not a sometime-thing, it is an All-the-Time thing. You don't try to win some of the time, you try to win All of the Time. Winning is a Habbit! Unfortunately, so is losing."

MJ & Kobe made own their habbits, LeBron is making his.
Not sure how that gets drawn up in some play book, or explained by some talking head on ESPN and then regirgitated onto this forum, but it will and it has. Supporting LeBron's "good play" does not make anyone here any smarter or wiser, it only distracts of from what we all know deep down to be true:

Lebron is not who we hoped he was, & we are all letting him off the hook".

TheDavisBrothers
03-03-2012, 10:12 PM
That's not what I'm saying though. You have Lebron James and Dwayne Wade on the court but you would rather have Udonis Haslem taking the last shot? Haslem isn't a shooter or a scorer, he isn't a scoring threat at all. Yes, he can make those shots and he has and will but quoting an article saying thats his bread and butter and all this is just plain wrong.

The only person "quoting" is you, remember http://www.pacersdigest.com/showpost.php?p=1383499&postcount=98

Brad8888
03-03-2012, 10:36 PM
It doesn't matter to me. As long as the Decider or his Decidekick misses the shot, I'm good.

Hibbert
03-03-2012, 10:56 PM
The only person "quoting" is you, remember http://www.pacersdigest.com/showpost.php?p=1383499&postcount=98

I added the url beforehand so that doesn't mean anything, you were the one quoting steve kerr with the bread and butter thing.

TheDavisBrothers
03-03-2012, 11:01 PM
I added the url beforehand so that doesn't mean anything, you were the one quoting steve kerr with the bread and butter thing.

1st off no you didn't and 2nd I have no clue what Steve Kerr thing you're talking about...
Unlike some, I don't have to google my answers

Hibbert
03-03-2012, 11:29 PM
1st off no you didn't and 2nd I have no clue what Steve Kerr thing you're talking about...
Unlike some, I don't have to google my answers

You were 12-13 when Haslem came into this league. I'm sure you watched him so much and always though of his midrange shot, "man, that's that guys bread and butter". Inside defender, rebounder, sure, but in no way is he a shooter or a scorer. I'm done with this pointless argument. My answer is simply yes, Lebron should of taken that shot last night.

TheDavisBrothers
03-03-2012, 11:33 PM
You were 12-13 when Haslem came into this league. I'm sure you watched him so much and always though of his midrange shot, "man, that's that guys bread and butter". Inside defender, rebounder, sure, but in no way is he a shooter or a scorer. I'm done with this pointless argument. My answer is simply yes, Lebron should of taken that shot last night.

So teenagers don't know anything about basketball then? Wow it's almost funny if it wasn't so sad...

AesopRockOn
03-03-2012, 11:38 PM
http://i1076.photobucket.com/albums/w460/npowell4christ/larry-bird_display_image.jpg

Bird looks like he's totally bawlin'.

Nuntius
03-03-2012, 11:57 PM
Not sure how that gets drawn up in some play book, or explained by some talking head on ESPN and then regirgitated onto this forum, but it will and it has. Supporting LeBron's "good play" does not make anyone here any smarter or wiser, it only distracts of from what we all know deep down to be true:

Lebron is not who we hoped he was, & we are all letting him off the hook".

I'm quoting this part because this is the most interesting part of your post. Frankly, I should have quoted the whole quote but then it would all look too long.

Here it goes then:

A large part of your post assumes that people only talk about this play that way because it was made by LeBron.

Personally, I couldn't care less. There's no comparison between MJ and LeBron. None. MJ was from an another player. I could see a comparison between LeBron's and Kobe's greatness but that's only because I believe that Kobe is not that great either. Now, granted I've only watched post-Shaq Kobe. But what I dislike about Kobe is his bad shot selection and this was true throughout most of his career. Too much hero ball for me to bare. What I dislike about LeBron is that he is a poor FT shooter for his position. If he wants to claim that he is the most complete player at the moment he has to fix this (and also improve on the 3 point shot).

It's safe to say that I had no expectations from him to begin with (mainly because I didn't give a damn). So, the bold part of your post does not hold any truth here.

Also, ESPN has nothing to do with this. I live in Greece and I don't watch the ESPN. I only use their site to dig up game logs, splits and such info. The ESPN did not force anything into my mind. What I'm saying comes from my personal experience of playing basketball for 10 years and watching it for 15. I was never a good player to begin with. I could only defend, grab some boards and make passes. I did know which plays were the correct ones.

Of course, you're gonna respond that Junior High basketball is different from the NBA. And you're right, it is. But this difference does not have to do with what is a good shot or not. An open jumper by a player that can make it (cause Hibbert, Haslem can and will make this shot a lot more often than not) will always be the right shot. There are only two shots that have a higher percentage than the top of the key jumper. The dunk and the uncontested layup. In that order.

Could the Heat get a dunk in that play? Not with the people that the Jazz had in the paint.

Could the Heat get an uncontested layup in that play? No. There was no time for a back-cut and if LeBron penetrated he would be contested by two people.

The immediate next choice was the jumper. They took it but he missed. **** happens.

spreedom
03-04-2012, 12:01 AM
Damned if you do, damned if you don't in this case.... but at the same time, he deserves every bit of nitpicking that fans and the media do over his every move, and has brought every ounce of criticism upon himself. And I'm more than happy to watch him fail.

But the Heat are still far and away the best team in the league, and he has a LOT to do with that.

RLeWorm
03-04-2012, 12:17 AM
Yes! Even if it was the right play to pass it to Haslem. He still should have pulled up. Better to miss it and learn from it. Kobe, melo, and even wade just do iso's and will take the final shot. Lebron just needs to do an iso and pull up.

Nuntius
03-04-2012, 12:24 AM
Kobe, melo, and even wade just do iso's and will take the final shot.

Which is one of the things I hate in this league. Several people plainly hate this whole iso ordeal in crunch time.

King Tuts Tomb
03-04-2012, 02:13 AM
To quote Jack from lost: "Live together, die alone."

LeBron has played this way since his rookie year. He's determined to win or lose the game together as a team. I respect it, although there are other times I do wish he'd just take a twenty foot contested jumper instead of trusting a worse teammate. But that's how he's decided to play and he's stuck with it.

King Tuts Tomb
03-04-2012, 02:16 AM
Deadspin's take on it:


Can LeBron James Do Anything Right?
Following the Miami Heat loss to the Utah Jazz, a loss in which LeBron scored 17 in the fourth quarter but passed on the final possession, the argument goes like this: "It was the right 'basketball' play, but I would like to see LeBron take that shot." Or, as ESPN's resident basketball-as-played in-a-vacuum analyst Jon Barry put it: "Great basketball play? Yes. Bad timing? Absolutely." This, in a nutshell, is the story of LeBron's career as told by talking heads. And this, in a nutshell, is total ********.
Putting aside the very legitimate argument that the Heat would not have been in a position to win the game without LeBron making two huge three-point shots in the final minute (or the equally legitimate argument that they may not have been in a position to lose the game without Dwyane Wade forgetting he played basketball and not hockey), do you want to have your cake, or eat it? To criticize a player for doing the right thing but, by definition, wishing he did the wrong thing is about the most disingenuous thing a fan or pundit can do. Aside from claiming the play was correct but for when it occurred, that is.

The respect of sports fans—and those who are paid to tell sports fans what to think—is gained in one of two ways: being so awe-inspiringly good one can only shake his head in disbelief or playing the game the "right way." We love superstars and we love team players. LeBron James by most accounts is both and can't seem to win either way.

LeBron is a physical specimen capable of doing just about anything on the court himself yet he also understands how to play basketball within a team structure. He is praised for his "court vision" and can pass and find the open man. What's more, he is willing to give it up to the open man when he finds him. Udonis Haslem was wide open and LeBron James was double covered. That is why it was the "right basketball play." That is why he passed the ball. Players are routinely praised for unselfish, team-oriented play yet whenever a superstar does it, he gets labelled "soft," "unclutch" or lacking in that "killer instinct."

The superstar is thus put in the most untenable of situations. He must be successful at all times, by himself. If Lebron took the shot and made it, LeBron and the Heat would have done exactly what is expected: beat the Jazz in March. If he took the shot and missed, the story would be LeBron forcing a shot because of the All-Star Game debacle. And when he passed it up, he's weak but with the all but irrelevant caveat that he made the right decision. This kind of framework makes it impossible to appreciate the very greatness that created it.

It's fun to hate on LeBron because of his poor Decision-making and the ridiculous introduction ceremony performance, but let's be honest about it. Let's kill LeBron when he actually screws up. If he has an atrocious performance in a playoff game, let him have it. Just remember that somehow it has become impossible to be both great and play with all the other qualities we respect, admire and often wish our superstars exhibited.