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Friday, July 9, 2010
Dan Gilbert's disastrous letter

By Henry Abbott

As someone who spent a fair chunk of time in Daily Dime Live and on Twitter since LeBron James' decision became public, I can tell you that James has been the target of a lot of vitriol.

Dan Gilbert to the rescue.

With one stroke of the pen, the jilted Cavaliers' owner has done James the most extraordinary public relations favor imaginable, by ripping the "villain of the night" trophy right out of James' hands.

I don't know the specifics of Gilbert and James' behind-the-scenes history, and I'm in no position to tell you that James is perfect. But I do know that the owner's open letter to Cavaliers fans blatantly lacks class, and will earn far more support for James than for Gilbert.

You know that TV show with Cesar Millan, the dog trainer? I heard him say once that humans are the only animal that will follow an unstable leader. He says this when talking to humans, training them how to act as leaders to dogs. Basically, he's saying to take a deep breath, to be cool, to act with poise if you expect dogs to respect you.

I think the same goes with most people. You want your leader to make sense, and offer comfort and inspiration. Nothing much was called for here. Gilbert could have been silent. Could have wished James well. Could have said he's heartbroken. Instead, he went on the attack, talked some trash, called James names.

This is a terrible night for Cleveland fans. Not only did they lose the best player in the NBA, but they also are now attempting to rebuild with a green GM and an owner who just served notice that if push comes to shove, he'll bail publicly, and profoundly, on his players, no matter how well they've performed.