When Lebron James made the announcement that he was leaving the Miami Heat to rejoin his home state Cleveland Cavaliers, one couldn’t help but immediately make comparisons to Seth Rollins and WWE’s Shield faction.
James’ choice to leave the Miami Heat can be seen as a way of him turning his back and former teammates Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh. In the four years the trio played together, they reached the NBA Finals every year, winning the championship on two occasions. All three took pay cuts in order for the Heat to be able to sign the trio in the summer of 2010. James made his decision then on an ESPN special that made him appear to be a villain, turning his back on Cleveland.
Meanwhile in WWE, fans witnessed the end of the trio of Seth Rollins, Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose, collectively known as The Shield. At the conclusion of Raw the night after Payback, Rollins turned his back on Reigns and Ambrose, attacking them with a chair. Rollins aligned himself with Triple H and the Authority. It turned out well for Rollins as he would go on to win the Money in the Bank briefcase at the end of June.
These two scenarios in pro basketball and wrestling are not as similar as the memes and GIFs suggest. In the GIF, James’ head is on Rollins’ body as he attacks Wade (whose face is on Reigns’ body) and Bosh (whose face is on Ambrose’s body) looks on in disgust.
In reality, Wade and Bosh are much more understanding than Reigns and Ambrose. Rightfully so too. Wade and Bosh have both made statements stating that they still consider themselves brothers. Both former teammates understood why James was returning to Cleveland. Not only is that where he began his career, but James is from Ohio. Every NBA player dreams of winning a championship with their home team.
On the other hand, Rollins left The Shield to join the bad guys. He turned heel. James was already a heel. If anything, James signing with the Cavaliers was a babyface turn. He took less money to go home. However, just like how Rollins won the Money in the Bank briefcase in hopes of becoming WWE World Heavyweight Champion, James hopes his change leads to some gold as well.
So while the comparisons are fun to discuss and make memes and GIFs out of it, they were very different. James didn’t turn on Wade and Bosh. Rollins turned on Reigns and Ambrose. James, Wade and Bosh will all be happy next year. James will be starting on a team with three other former number one draft picks. Wade and Bosh will see their numbers go up with James out of the picture.
Rollins is going to go face to face against his former teammate, Ambrose, at WWE Battleground. Perhaps, we could see Heat versus Cavaliers during the NBA Playoffs in 2015. Until then, the comparisons will continue.
What are your thoughts on the comparison between Lebron James leaving the Heat and Seth Rollins turning on the Shield? Please share your comments in the section below.
Seth Guttenplan is a math and computer technology teacher for special education students in New Jersey. In his free time, Seth writes about wrestling for Camel Clutch Blog and SEScoops. Follow Seth on twitter @sethgutt