And so it has come to this.
Like President Barack Obama making a State of the Union Address, LeBron James will go before the world Thursday night, live in primetime on national TV, to announce his intentions to play for some lucky NBA team for some period of time for some astronomical amount of money.
The hotly-anticipated resolution to the much-scrutinized question of where King James will lay his is to be aired in the United States on ESPN television and radio, and can be seen here in Canada on TSN at 9 p.m. ET.
Yes, the whole notion is ridiculous, but don’t lie, basketball fan: You know you’ll be watching.
While I could criticize the (soon-to-be former?) Cleveland Cavs forward of being narcissistic enough to take over the airwaves for an hour (with his hand-picked host Jim Gray), I must in the same breath praise James for the arrangement that will see all proceeds from ‘The Decision’ go to the Boys and Girls Clubs of America.
I think the more interesting issue at hand here is the rapidly apparent change in the way sports is covered, particularly in the era of reality TV. Is the media making the news, or is the news making the media?
‘The Decision’ arrives as James’ fellow megastar free-agent Dwyane Wade mulls his options, all while cameras roll, gathering footage that will later be assembled into a documentary on his gut-wrenching deliberation. It now looks like Wade will stay with the Miami Heat, but not before several other teams got involved in a tension-filled plot coming soon to a DVD player near you.
And let’s not forget about TSN’s recent feature, ‘Oil Change’, which chronicled the build-up to the Edmonton Oilers picking first in the NHL draft. That hour-long “documentary” was produced by the Oilers’ director of broadcasting, and only served to ramp up the great Taylor vs. Tyler debate, which ended with Taylor Hall being selected rather than Tyler Seguin. Some speculate the Oilers were set on the Windsor Spitfires winger all along, but hey, it made for great TV, didn’t it?
As for as how the LeBron drama will likely end, that changes hourly. Scuttlbebutt says Miami now has the inside track, just as the New York Knicks did earlier Wednesday. Still yet, perhaps he is called back home to Cleveland, and Bulls fans in Chicago are clinging to hope.
Want the answer? Guess we’ll just have to tune in.