'The Decision': Ratings bonanza, PR disaster


Whether or not you follow basketball, you probably heard about the recent one-hour TV special in which NBA star and free agent LeBron James announced which team he would be moving to.

The 60-minute ego-fest, titled, The Decision, was a ratings bonanza with nearly 10 million viewers. But it also served to paint James in a rather negative light. After announcing he would be joining the Miami Heat, the interviewer asked him how he felt about sharing the spotlight with the two other stars on the Miami team.

LeBron's response: "For me, it's not about sharing, it's about everybody having their own spotlight and then doing what's best for the team."

The first six words tell the whole story. It's hard to imagine those words coming out of the mouths of athletes like Wayne Gretkzy, Michael Jordan or Steve Nash. James has taken a lot of 'heat' for the manner in which he made his announcement, including a public lambasting by the owner of his former team.

The Lesson: First, wear a suit. During the special, James looked like he was stopped on his way to a picnic. Second, rent a copy of Bull Durham. In the 1988 movie, Crash Davis (Kevin Costner) teaches Ebby 'Nuke' LaLoosh (Tim Robbins) how to survive sports media interviews by keeping it simple and cranking out clichés. It's boring, but non-controversial.