As Tiger Woods goes, so goes Lebron James
A short while back, Lebron James found himself in a mini-controversy when it was learned that he had asked Nike to disappear a video tape of James being dunked on. While the incident certainly isn’t world-shaking by any means, it was a chance to see inside the massive ego of one of this era’s great athletes.
Of course, it’s not like James was the first superstar athlete to hide his flaws. About 100 years ago, Babe Ruth would eat 20 hot dogs, drink 30 beers, sleep with 28 prostitutes and then go 2-for-4 with a dinger. And the press would dutifully report on the dinger and little else.
Using a more recent example, it’s easy to see that James could be following in the same footsteps as Tiger Woods when it comes to image control.
Long-time Southern California sportswriter Paul Oberjuerge brings up a story about Woods from ESPN’s Rick Reilly. Because it seems that Woods - who has a minor reputation as a hothead on course, is likely even more of a hothead than we know.
At least, that is what Rick Reilly of espn.com claims in a recent column. And he is a big golf guy … who says he has been there when Tiger has thrown clubs or detonated F bombs after a bad shot … and that this bad behavior happens all the time. Reilly suggests it’s time for Tiger to control himself.
Oberjuerge goes on to say that he was never aware of who bad Woods can get on the course, but that he believes he knows why that is:
Tiger throws clubs and screams obscenities — sometimes directed at fans — yet a lot of us had never heard about it until Reilly wrote it?
How is that possible? …
… There has been a sort of media conspiracy — self-imposed, by the media — to Just Not Mention the bad behavior by golf’s golden boy.
That sounds about right. Much like how our national job rarely challenges top politicians for fear of never getting access to said politician, the same goes for Tiger. And the same will go for James, who ironically shares the same birthday as Woods.
As we are still learning to crawl through this new century, Woods and James are the shining examples of the new American Sports Superstar. Because while both are fine athletes and maintain great Q ratings with their fans, neither are by any means perfect. Just don’t expect the national media to tell you that.
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