Back in 2010, LeBron James left the Cleveland Cavaliers and announced it through an hour long ESPN special titled “The Decision”. This decision brought into existence “The Letter”, the infamous volatile verbal assault issued by Cavs owner Dan Gilbert basically defaming the name, character, and actions of James who he thought had betrayed the franchise and the city of Cleveland.


This letter was posted online and for a brief moment, the city followed behind it, and Gilbert, as the wound of their chosen one leaving was still very fresh.


(Business Insider)

But as time went on and James won two championships in Miami, another decision would have to be made: Stay in Miami or return to Cleveland?


Although we know that the decision was made for him to return “home”, it was clear that with Gilbert still at the helm, it was much of a “home”.


Recently, a video surfaced of James talking about the move to go back to Cleveland and how his mom was totally against it because of why Gilbert had said just four years prior. However, James realizing that this was about his city, and not just one person, decided to return regardless knowing that he once again had to deal with Gilbert and figure out a way to make it work for the “bigger picture”.


As it turned out, James would deliver on the promise of a championship in year 2 of his return and the city of Cleveland was once again able to rejoice about a sports team.


It had a clear impact on a city that had gone through over 50 years of heartbreak and turmoil and all was thought to be mended between James, Gilbert and the city as a whole.


This past season, rumors resurfaced that there was some turmoil within the Cavs organization, whether through locker room troubles or front office miscommunications. For many, Cavs GM David Griffin deserved a lot of credit for constructing the team and product that was on the floor. That many included James who had made it publicly clear that Griffin deserved an extension, something a GM has never gotten under the reign of Gilbert.


Naturally, these types of things tend to seep through organizational walls and spill out into the media who will make it a headline as to why a team may or may not be performing at their best.


(AP Photo/Mark Duncan)

This is exactly what happened with the Cavaliers this season, especially down the stretch. Although they made it to the Finals, they needed up losing to the Warriors in five games and talks began as to how this team could possibly reload to match up with the Warriors.


Again, James made it clear that the first order of business should be the resigning of Griffin to the GM role, but in typical Dan Gilbert fashion, Griffin was denied an extension and effectively relieved of his position.


This move sparked rumors that, with James becoming a free agent again next season, that he would seriously consider changing teams again due to the inconvenience of having Gilbert as the owner.


From this, it was also reported that Kyrie Irving would then seek a trade if James decided to make this move, essentially breaking up the core of a team that could still be a dynasty.


What is odd about all of this is Gilbert’s penchant for making the wrong decisions at the wrong times.


Example 1: LeBron James entered his first potential free agency in 2008 after leading the Cavs to the Finals a year prior. James signs a 2 year extension with the option to opt-out after the third year. Instead of going out and trying to get a big name free agent in their prime, like most other teams would, they get Shaquille O’Neal, who was at the end of his wits by this time and really unable to make a major difference.


This resulted in three years of not making it back into the Finals and “The Decision” to be made.


Example 2: Gilbert decides to not extend the contract of Griffin who was in the middle of possibly making a deal for Paul George, a very possible answer to matching the firepower of the Warriors. This decision ended negotiations between the Cavs and Pacers for s potential trade for George and put the Cavs behind the 8 ball in this upcoming free agency.


What’s consistent here is the fact that Gilbert tends to be stuck in his own stubbornness and this usually results in bad things for his organization, as it would for most.


What’s perplexing is that he continues to do this at a time where his franchise is in the best shape it has ever been and is possibly on the verge of bringing multiple titles to a city that lacked one for so long.


If this keeps up, 2016 may have only have witnessed the only title in Cleveland for a while.


Do you think the team will stay together with the firing of David Griffin? Let’s talk about it here or find me on Twitter @Phenombc3.