‘No I can’t say that. Look I’m not the most empathetic person in the world anyway, but look first of all it’s sports. The thing that would make me feel bad for somebody was some personal issue. I’m not going to feel bad that you are struggling on a basketball court because you only get to within two wins of a championship. Come on there was nothing to feel sorry for. I got a little tired I’ll admit of the whole everybody hates us routine. I thought first of all it’s not true. Okay it’s the same as the Yankees type of thing. There’s just a lot of people interested, so there may be more people who dislike you. There are also more people that like you. There’s a great deal of interest. Second of all they brought it on…LeBron more than anybody. They brought all that scrutiny and attention on yourself. You went out seeking it then don’t cry in the face of it. That to me got to be a very tiresome story line.’”
HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Part of this is about LeBron James. Most of this is about Pat Riley.
Remember, Orlando Magic coach Stan Van Gundy was once gainfully employed as head coach of the Miami Heat. Riley was his boss, mentor, and friend.
Riley then fired Stan Van Gundy, so he could take over behind the bench. The Heat won the 2006 championship. Stan and brother Jeff Van Gundy, a former head coach turned broadcaster, have been warring with Riley ever since.
In fact, the Van Gundys never pass on a chance to slam the Hall of Fame sideline boss.
Stan Van Gundy is right: the Heat, especially James, brought this on themselves. They hosted a celebration after signing the Three Kings. And James boldly predicted that the Heat would win multiple championships.
So James and the Heatles can’t complain. They set the bar exceptionally high. They failed to reach those expectations. Now fans, as Stan Van Gundy mentioned, are holding them accountable.
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