Pardon the eternal optimism, but LeBron James’ commenting on the Clippers in a positive manner on national television can only be considered a good thing. Maybe it’s a case of hearing what you want to hear, but LeBron’s saying the Clippers have some “really good players” and some “nice solid pieces” is a great endorsement from the most influential free agent the NBA has ever seen.
LeBron could have left it at the obvious; that Los Angeles was a nice city with even nicer weather. Maybe he could have gently mentioned shaky ownership, or that the Clippers losing tradition has equated to just two winning seasons in 26 years in Los Angeles. Frankly, he could have laughed at the question and no one would have thought him worse for it. No one really expects LeBron to give the Clippers a whole lot of thought come July 1.
But instead of doing that, LeBron made sure to mention Blake Griffin, Chris Kaman and Baron Davis by name. LeBron is held in such high esteem that even the mention of the Clippers’ core group makes them seem more appealing. Let’s face it, most media conversations about Los Angeles’ other team begin and end with the old familiar line, “It’s the Clippers.” LeBron’s remarks didn’t, and even that alone means something.
When LeBron declares that it’s about winning later on in the interview, you have to wonder if he really means that. If it’s just about the other four guys on the court with him, and if it’s just about the best chance at a ring, it’s hard not to consider the Clippers’ core one of the most appealing out of all the suitors this summer. Most likely LeBron still isn’t coming to L.A., but by holding up the illusion that he just might be considering it, the Clippers come out of LeBron’s interview with a little more shine than they did going in.