LeBron James should let Zydrunas Ilgauskas have his night

David Richard-USA TODAY Sports
David Richard-USA TODAY Sports /
David Richard-USA TODAY Sports
David Richard-USA TODAY Sports /

The Cleveland Cavaliers will retire former center Zydrunas Ilgauskas’ No. 11 in a ceremony on March 8 at Quicken Loans Arena. It’s going to be an emotional night for the Cavs’ long-time big man, and for everyone involved.

And LeBron James wants to play a part in it.

All due respect to King James, but hang back bro…let Big Z have his night.

It’s not LeBron’s fault, it’s just the way things are. Where LeBron goes, the cameras go…the microphones go…and all the attention goes. This is supposed to be Ilgauskas’ night, and LeBron could essentially kill that.

Already things are beginning to turn that way, with LeBron even mentioning that he wants to attend the ceremony (which his schedule is opened up enough to do), and will be flying his private jet to Cleveland so that he can be there for his friend.

So now all eyes on LeBron, his mask, his 61-point game, his muscling into the MVP discussion (again).

Don’t do it LeBron. Let Z have his night.

“I want to be there, but we’ll see. I’m not sure just yet,” James said. “I think it’s going to be a great day for my friend, a dear friend of mine. I’m excited for him.”

We get it. Ilgauskas, now special assistant to the GM in Cleveland, was a longtime teammate and friend, and LeBron wants to be there to celebrate his special night with his buddy. That’s just normal. But where LeBron James is concerned, things are never normal.

Let’s not forget the sour taste that obviously still lies in the collective mouths of the Cleveland faithful. Right or wrong, business decision or not, Cavs fans may never come to terms with their hero taking his talents to South Beach and leaving them twisting in the wind.

Don’t bring the circus LeBron, don’t bring the controversy and extracurricular chitter-chatter. Just send your pal a nice gift with a heartfelt note. My guess, he’ll understand.

[Source: ESPN]