Literally no one thought LeBron James was retiring, which is why Dan Patrick is confused by ESPN treating LeBron not retiring as breaking news.
LeBron was at the ESPYS Wednesday night to accept the award for Best Record-Breaking Performance after he surpassed Kareem Abdul-Jabbar on the NBA’s all-time scoring list last season. During his acceptance speech, LeBron “announced” what we already knew, that he is not retired.
“Lucky for you guys, that day is not today.”
Go off, Bron 😂 pic.twitter.com/4X1Fqs0PqX
— ESPN (@espn) July 13, 2023
“I don’t care how many more points I can score or what I can or can’t do on the floor,” James said. “The real question for me is, can I play without cheating this game? The day I can’t play without giving everything on the floor is the day I’ll be done. Lucky for you guys, that day is not today.”
The announcement gave ESPN the opportunity to create headlines and put LeBron on the chyron during First Take’s A-Block. It also left former ESPN talent and current Fox Sports Radio host Dan Patrick shaking his head.
“I wasn’t waiting for an announcement,” Patrick said in response to Danette Patrick “Seton” O’Connor broaching the topic. “I got one, and then ESPN’s treating it like it’s breaking news. You know what’s breaking news? If he retired! Not that he’s coming back. Who thought he might retire? NOBODY.”
LeBron stood there and basked in his glory as the crowd responded to his announcement with a rousing applause, even though everyone already knew he was not retiring. The Denver Nuggets’ championship winning squad, meanwhile, sat there wondering why, once again, they were being overshadowed by LeBron.
After the Nuggets swept the Los Angeles Lakers out of the playoffs en route to their first title in franchise history, LeBron sat in front of reporters and hinted at the possibility of retiring. But it has now been months since anyone talked about LeBron’s future retirement. Any doubt about whether LeBron would be in uniform for the Lakers next season was self-created.
“It’s just needy,” Patrick added of LeBron’s announcement at the ESPYS. “And you don’t need it. ‘I want publicity, don’t forget about me, I don’t want to cheat the game.’ Play! Just play. You’re one of the greatest of all time.”
[The Dan Patrick Show]