The Zone

Blog: It’s Validation not Coronation
Blog: It’s Validation not Coronation

val·i·date (vl-dt)          vali·dation n.
tr.v. val·i·dat·ed, val·i·dat·ing, val·i·dates
1. To declare or make legally valid. 2. To mark with an indication of official sanction.3. To establish the soundness of; corroborate.

Yep, I’m starting this off with a definition from the online Free Dictionary. Stick with me, this is not an English class assignment or the start of a far too easy spelling bee. Nope, just my take on perception and reality with a hardwood backdrop.

Last week, LeBron James won the 2013 NBA Champonship. Oh sure the Miami Heat actually won the title by beating the Spurs, but you wouldn’t know that by the reaction throughout the media and Twitter universe. The talking heads and tweeps would have you believe LeBron did it all himself.

This 2nd ring for LeBron apparently was so impressive many would have you believe the self proclaimed King James has now secured a spot next to Michael Jordan on basketball’s Mt.Olympus. Nothing could be farther from the truth.

Before the haters starting texting me, let me say…LeBron James is amazing! He is the best player in the NBA today. He very well could join MJ at the basketball summit one day. Given his youth, he may, dare I say it, surpass Michael. Let’s be clear though, we sure aren’t there yet and there are miles to go.

Here come the numbers and accolades. Michael Jordan’s career NBA marks below are unbelievable. This isn’t all of them, just a top-10 list. let’s not forget the NCAA title, Naismith and Wooden awards and those 4 gold medals and perfect record in international play. Who didn’t want to “be like Mike”?

The one number not listed for Michael is 0. It should be, twice. For the number of NBA Championship series he lost and the number of titles he counted before actually winning any.

Coronation: LeBron James was crowned a champion by fans and we in the media before he fought the fight. He furthered the coronation with the shameless count off of titles the Big-3 were bringing to South Beach before logging even one practice. The man/child who would be king seemed to have forgotten a few steps before slipping on his crown

Validation: This second title for LBJ and the role he played in wining it legitimizes his bid to make a run at “His Airness”. There are lots of guys with one ring, but a second opens the MJ conversation. I repeat…opens the conversation.

LeBron was fantastic. he learned from his NBA finals failure vs. San Antonio in 2007. He worked on his mid range and 3-point shot after falling to Dallas in 2011. It all paid off. He was simply the best and got deserved validation from current and past NBA stars who now dared to mention his name along with Michael’s. The keyword is mention!

The validation is legit, the coronation is not. Don’t fret Bron-Bron…it’s not all your fault. We have ourselves to blame.

The old saying is “(insert name here) is great, just ask him”.  Yet if you constantly tell me how great you are (especially before there is tangible evidence) I stop caring about finding out. But in today’s Twitter feed, Facebook, American Idol, read my blog (I do see the irony in this) world everyone is a star before they do anything. Too busy waiting to be famous.

Hard work has been replaced with much loftier pursuits, like giving yourself narcissistic nicknames like “Peoples Champ” or any name followed by the words “Playa” “Wow” or “Killa”. And don’t forget the requisite voyeuristic hashtags like #Baller or #ThatsHowWeRoll on Twitter or Instagram. Usually these gems are coming from the person sitting at home in their underwear watching the tube wondering why they don’t have their own reality show. Really? Do ya not know?

So here’s where perception isn’t reality. You can believe your dog is a bird all day long, but until he grows wings, leaves some droppings on your shirt and flies away, he aint. LeBron James isn’t Michael Jordan, but unlike the aforementioned and labored dog-bird analogy, he could be. Maybe more. He’s now legit, in the club, a made man.  The second championship got him access to the secret handshake. That only comes with validation before coronation and that only comes courtesy of hard work. Isn’t that really what we all want and should expect in our endeavors?

Even though I was rooting for the Spurs, I’m happy for Lebron. He truly seems to have learned from his impetuous past. He has become a symbol of what hard work, desire and commitment can bring. It’s nice to have an example to live up to…no matter how hard it is chasing after Air.

Podcasts

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The Zone 7/31/2015 – Part 1

Hawks quarterback Russell Wilson signed today! WOOOOO! Russell becomes the 2nd-highest paid player in the NFL and we’re happy to hear it! But what are the implications? How does this affect Bobby Wagner? Russell Wilson signed his extension earlier this morning at we wanted to hear from you, so collected your texts and took calls on whether Russell deserves the have the second most lucrative contract in the NFL. And on baseball’s trade deadline day the Mariners unloaded J.A. Happ and Mark Lowe. Doug is as down on the M’s as ever as they play out the last two months. Baseball in Seattle everyone!

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The Zone 7/30/2015 – Part 1

Before we get today’s Mariners news there is a random gourd in the studio. Weird. The M’s have announced they have traded Dustin Ackley to the New York Yankees for a pair of minor leaguers. Zach Rymer from BleacherReport.com joins to talk about the Ackley trade, what other Mariners could be traded and other potential trades around the MLB. Greg Bishop from Sports Illustrated wrote this week’s cover story about coach Pete Carroll and the Seahawks bouncing back from the Super Bowl 49 loss. The boys and Greg also discuss Russell Wilson’s contract situation, is Pete really genuine and omelets… yes, omelets. The Big, Old, Dumb Game of the Day.

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The Zone 7/28/2015 – Part 1

Doug is sick today so Mark is solo. Plenty of NFL headlines today with Tom Brady’s suspension being upheld, Le’Veon Bell’s suspension being reduced and Russell Wilson contract negotiations have been on-going. We hear from a few ESPN analysts on the implications from all of today’s news. Gregg Bell from the News Tribune of Tacoma joins us and he has some optimistic words for Seahawk fans regarding Russell Wilson and his contract situation. Mark & Gregg also discuss the beginning of training camp, which begins Friday. The Big Old Dumb Game of the Day.

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The Zone 7/28/2015 – Part 2

Former Vancouver Canuck Garth Butcher wants fans to know about a fundraiser for a good cause and he tells us all about it. The Canucks themselves are also a topic, does Garth have faith in the front office? Is Willie Desjardins the right guy for the job? It’s another Trivia Tuesday with prizes on the line from Westside Pizza. The KPUG staff gathers again for another round of Good Question. Questions include farm animals, movies and the KPUG staff’s future.

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The Zone 7/28/2015 – Part 3

Sporting News ‘O’ the Day.