LeBron James isn’t a fan of fans who burn the jerseys of their favorite NBA team’s former players.
In fact, he’s downright pissed about it.
Video surfaced on Wednesday of a Boston Celtics “fan” burning Isaiah Thomas’ No. 4 following the Kyrie Irving trade that sent him to the Cleveland Cavaliers. The footage is…as dumb and pointless as you’d expect:
Some stupid Boston fans are burning Isaiah Thomas' jersey. He played his ass off, recruited stars and GOT TRADED. He didn't choose to leave. pic.twitter.com/bwYP7EpUfU
— Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) August 23, 2017
LeBron responded to the video, and all other jersey-burnings basically, on Thursday:
— Stadium (@WatchStadium) August 24, 2017
It’s absurd that we even need to have this discussion, but yes, jersey-burning is freaking stupid. You’re probably a jackass if you do it when a player leaves in free agency, but you’re most definitely a grade-F asshat if you’re torching the uniform of a player who was traded after not asking to be dealt in the first place. And this particular situation is doubly insane, because Thomas played in a game for the Celtics just two days after his sister, Chyna, passed away. Talk about classless.
Even if this was next summer, and Thomas had just left in free agency, the jersey-burning would still be dumb. Teams seldom get chided for trading key players when they think it’ll upgrade their situation. Why should someone, like Gordon Hayward for instance, be derided for doing the same?
Not all NBA fans are idiots. Plenty of smart, down-to-earth Celtics fans exist. And, on many levels, us paying attention to the ones who aren’t only succeeds in giving the entire base a bad name, while propping up exposure for a select few shitheads.
Still, what James said needed to be said. These videos will go viral regardless. Denouncing the heaping piles of trash that do is a good substitute for ensuring they never get seen at all.