Kobe Bryant and NBA Fans, There’s a Reason LeBron James Laid It Up

During the Clipper game on Sunday, LeBron James had a fast break opportunity coming in from the wing. He received the pass and with nobody in the area to defend, LeBron gently laid the ball in off the glass for two points. Two quiet points.

Those fast breaks points, especially when the Miami Heat were playing on their home floor, are meant for dazzling dunks and highlight hoops. But all there was to see was a classic layup, the kind so fundamental a coach would model it when teaching a group of youngsters.

What does this mean?

Your first thought might be skepticism, I understand. You might be cringing at me with a raised brow wondering, “Why is this an issue?”

Here’s why: LeBron’s layup represented, pictured, and embodied what I have been thinking for a while now.

LeBron James meant it when he said he went to Miami to win championships. He even used words like “business” and “multiple” in a serious manner in the same breath. For example: “I’m about business. And we believe we can win multiple championships."

That seems to be what the layup entails to me. This man, right now, is like Ice Man in the famously time-honored man movie, Top Gun. LeBron is staring a set of rings in the face, donning a cold hard stare, willing to tactically pick every team apart, wearing them down in the process. Cold as ice, never veering, just like Val Kilmer’s character.

This is an opinion piece, so I realize many may say, “It’s obvious what he wants: championships—duh.”

But that’s not merely what the layup portrays. What it does is create a metaphor. It’s not just that he’s going for the trophy, or seven of them. It’s how he is doing it.

Not flashy. Not showy. Just with efficiency.

The layup means he is not going to expend any undue energy. Remembe...

About the Author