LeBron James is one of the most recognizable and talented professional athletes in the whole world. Yet, that does not mean that people like him. In fact, I would go as far to say as he is one of the most disliked professional athletes of all time. Why is this? In this article, I am going to take you through the top six reasons people hate LeBron James.
1. He's Really Good
Let's start with the obvious. No one likes a talented player that poses a threat to their favorite team. LeBron James is without question one of the best players to ever play the game, and that means a lot of headaches for his opposition. Whether in his Cleveland or Miami days, there is no doubt he has done his damage to every single team in the NBA at one point or another. That's a lot of fan bases and therefore, a lot of people he has pissed off.
2. He's a Cleveland Cavalier that Ended the Cleveland Drought
The city of Cleveland had not won a professional sports championship since 1964 when the Cleveland Browns won it in the NFL. It seems the whole sports world was rooting to see Cleveland extend this streak as long as possible. Everyone took joy in seeing the City of Cleveland down for as long as it was. Who threatened and put an end to that? LeBron James. Who is the loser capital of the world now? Philly, perhaps?
3. The Decision
When LeBron James decided to take his talents to South Beach it was without question one of the biggest ego moves of all-time. Sure, one can say that many of the proceeds went to charity and that ESPN pressured him into it at a young age. But, let's be honest about two things. First off, LeBron James can make big boy decisions and secondly, does he really need his own show to raise a lot of money for charity? His autograph on anything alone raises its worth dramatically. Having your own show just to tell the world you are dumping your hometown is pretty crappy. It might be the only time the sports world actually felt bad for Cleveland. Oh, and the over dramatic party when he got to South Beach? That was just the ego cherry on top.
4. Hypocrite With Officiating
One thing LeBron always complains about is how his opposition doesn't get called for fouls on him because of his size. While this is probably true, is LeBron really going to act like he doesn't get a ton of officiating benefits? First off, he gets away with the most travels in the league. Secondly, his flop game is off the charts. Thirdly, he is always whining to the officials after every play at an above average rate. Do you really think Draymond Green would have been suspended for Game 5 of the NBA Finals if he hit Tristian Thompson in the groin after Thompson stepped over him? Not. At. All.
5. The Floppiest Flops
We expect players that aren't that good like Anderson Varejao to flop all day long because it's the only way for them to be relevant. But, for a player as good as LeBron James, it kind of ruins his reputation for him to flop as bad as he does. It's not just the flops, either. How many times have we seen LeBron James over exaggerate on a fall or hit and lay down on the floor for several minutes like he might be coming out of the game, only to get up like a magical resurrection has taken place and go on to dominate the game. How about in Game 7 of the NBA Finals when he collided hard with Draymond Green and then fell to the floor, laid on the ground for 10 minutes holding his wrist like his career was over, then picked up the Larry O'Brien Championship trophy with that same hand like it was no big deal? Come on LeBron, you're better than that.
6. He's a Threat to the "MJ is the Best Ever" Argument
This is a branch off my first point. Since LeBron is so good (and yes, he is really good), he is probably the only player in NBA history that one can argue is just as good as Michael Jordan. Every sport has that one player from a long time ago that no one likes to think can ever be beat for the title of "best to play the game." The MLB has Babe Ruth. NASCAR has Richard Petty. The NHL has Wayne Gretzky. The NBA has Michael Jordan. Personally, I don't think LeBron is better than Jordan but I can acknowledge there is a good argument for anyone who makes the comparison. For some, that drives them absolutely crazy.
There you have it. Those are the six main reasons sport fans hate LeBron James. I think for the most part we can all agree the guy is an exceptional person off the court, but his basketball related activity in a little immature for his caliber. Sure they're are hundreds of other NBA players that are far more immature than James (Ron Artest, J.R. Smith, Rasheed Wallace), but they also were no where as talented. There is no doubt James will go down as one of the best to ever play the game, but he will also go down as one of the most disliked professional athletes of all time.