lebron james

It Pays To Be Provocative, If You’re Talented

Floyd Mayweather, Tiger Woods, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James and Alex Rodriguez. What do they have in common?

They are all divisive personalities. In fact, if you look at that list, you could literally think it’s a list of the most hated athletes on the planet today.

Well, ironically, that isn’t where I got this list of names. It happens that these are also currently 5 of the 6 richest athletes, as compiled by SI. The ironic part is that it isn’t their salary that puts them atop this list — it’s the endorsement deals.

I’d think that endorsement deals go to the affable, likable athletes. And, for the most part, they do. There is often some connection there. However, it seems there is a give and take between likability and pure talent. Really, when it comes to compensation, talent can replace likability, based on the income of these 5 athletes. if you are talented enough, likability almost goes out the window.

Maybe the top-tier of athlete can only achieve so much likability anyway. This could potentially be related to the “killer instinct” cliche we hear.

I think about it as some version of a production possibility frontier. Example:

Work with me here. Maybe in this example the green dot on the blue line could be Kobe Bryant. His likability to talent ratio leans a bit to the talent side, for example. The green dot on the red line could be Dwight Howard. He has achieved less total likability and has less talent. However, Howard falls more towards the likability side, rather than talent.


King James’ Happy Place

LeBron James can finally breathe easy. The man has been in the spotlight since he was in middle school. He has been the chosen one since high school. While we were in the midst of watching Kobe win and win, LBJ was the one who was the next MJ.

The problem is James has never been the same players as Michael Jordan, or more recently, Kobe Bryant. And we’ve actually known that, well, forever. In fact, here are LeBron’s pre-2003 NBA Draft strengths according to NBA.com:

Strengths: Best attribute is his ability to make the correct pass with flair. Excellent strength and body control. His size and versatility allow him to play multiple positions. Coaches and teammates praise his unselfishness.

Why do we refuse to acknowledge that James is a uniquely different talent? While the conversation of Kobe being “selfish” was fleeting, the James isn’t a leader thing just wouldn’t go away.


From The Bleachers 6.22.12

As the end of the week approaches, a pair of OWS contributors banter about some of the important (and not so important) news items of the week.

…taking a week off.

So we didn’t do this last week because I was buried with a deadline for work. It was weird because nowadays, when you can’t hang out with people or dick around on blogs for a couple of weeks, you feel like you’re so behind the world when you can finally have a life again. I have no idea what 50 Shades of Gray is and I don’t know why two white-haired, glasses-wearing managers from expansion teams, who kinda look like twins, are yelling at each other. This must’ve been what those Chilean miners felt like when they came out of that hole in the ground…good god, see how old my references are???

When I didn’t get prompted for FTB, I just assumed you had gone out the night before and were still too hungover to type. It sounds like the reason was much more wholesome. I’m not too sure about 50 Shades of Grey either. If it’s not 50 Cent’s new autobiography, then I probably won’t like it.