Ding dong, King James is dead in the playoffs once agai..."/> Ding dong, King James is dead in the playoffs once agai..."/>

Calipari needs to end the buzz about Cavaliers job once and for all


Ding dong, King James is dead in the playoffs once again. And once again, the buzz is not on the Celtics pulling off an impressive six game series win over the under performing number one seed in the playoffs. It’s about Coach Cal and LeBron …. and yes, we know that it is good to have a coach that everyone covets. For too many years, we seemingly had a coach that no one else wanted and one that to a small faction had overstayed his welcome.

We get it. Cal is great, Cal is good. Let us thank him for Brandon Knight, John Wall, Michael Gilchrist and the whole brood. Without John Calipari, UK basketball would be in shambles. And we are eternally thankful for him. But what is the point of having the savior come to resurrect the program if we live under the never ending fear that he will on a whim vanish into the night pursuing his good friend LeBron James to whatever city will open up their checkbooks for this dream team combo?

I love Calipari as much as the next guy. I have defended him against his critics without pause and if there was a sword to fall on, I would have gladly fallen on it for the guy. But enough is enough.

The Calipari to *name your NBA team* rumors have ceased to be a compliment to our coach. They have become a distraction to the program and the fans. And as for a fanbase that John Calipari seems to love and calls the best in college basketball? Well, we deserve more. We deserve to have a coach that will stand up to the microphones and say “I am not going to the NBA. I am not leaving Kentucky. I am not going to coach LeBron. I am going nowhere”.

Yet that has not happened. We get tweets saying that he LOVES Kentucky and is happy at Kentucky but no firm statement that he is not happy enough at Kentucky to stay here for the length of his contract. We get news of he and Mitch Barnhart and Calipari both talking of a “retirement contract” yet that is all it is is talk.

And that is all this whole saga is a lot of talk. No one knows what LeBron is going to do. We think we know what Calipari may do. And all the pundits have no clue what either will do yet, they tweet, blog, and opine in every type of mass media. As the great Chuck D says, it’s a lot of “talking loud but saying nothing”.

Rick Bozich stirs the flames with his article “Kentucky basketball’s Calipari and NBA’s LeBron James are a dreamers match made in Heaven”. Bozich from the Courier Journal has no new information or any insider information into the saga, yet he plays the agent provocateur and attempts to stir the masses:

But the more it appears that LeBron will be playing for a new coach next season, the more people will point to Calipari. If you tried to diagram the perfect player for Cal’s dribble-drive offense, that player would be LeBron Raymone James.

Cleveland could see Cal as the one guy who could persuade LeBron to stay home, even though the Cavs are further from an NBA title than they were in 2007.
The Bulls have Derrick Rose, the former Memphis guard who led Calipari to one of his erased Final Fours. They also have an owner (Jerry Reinsdorf) who remains close with his dollars.

Then there is the most intriguing possibility — the New Jersey Nets, a franchise bound for Brooklyn.

Cal and LeBron could run that town all night, even over the beloved Knicks, especially if the Nets win the NBA draft lottery and fall into position to draft UK point guard John Wall.

It’s all treacle however. Judging by John Calipari’s past history, he is not one to stop a massive rebuilding project nowhere near its fruition and take on an equally paramount task overnight. Yes, he did leave UMass and Memphis without a title, but that was after he got the seven year itch. And you would think that for a guy as competitive as Calipari that leaving without a NCAA ring would be akin to failure.

And in Calipari, Kentucky has a rock star coach that likes the media attention and you would think to a certain degree likes hearing his name on ESPN every five minutes bandied for a myriad of jobs.

Surely Calipari is media savvy enough to know what his appearance at the Cavaliers game with his agent and LeBron’s agent had to look like. It’s an ego boost even if Cal has no intention of leaving Kentucky. It’s better to be wanted than not at all. We get it. And don’t get me wrong. Calipari deserves to enjoy the fruition of his hard work in Kentucky. We really kind of like the fact that Calipari is “BFF’s” with LeBron. It helps to expand the UK brand.

To be honest, I think Calipari knows how good he has it in Lexington and I don’t think he is that eager to be the next coach fired when LeBron James lays an egg in the NBA playoffs. But until Calipari steps up to the mic and makes that broad denouncement on the NBA, the rumors will swirl and the BBN will be in unrest.

It’s not that Calipari has done anything wrong in all this … he just hasn’t done ENOUGH.

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