Consider this video by 2011 US Open Champion, Rory McIlroy, after he lost his 54 hole lead at the Masters a few months ago.
Now, consider this video by Lebron James after his Miami Heat team lost the NBA Finals against the Dallas Mavericks.
When I first watched the Lebron James video, it angered me for all of 5 minutes. But, after that I realized something about that video that subsided my anger towards James completely.
Lebron James is a loser.
Ironically, when I saw the video I thought about Rory’s interview after blowing a giant lead at the Masters. How Rory handled the meltdown at Augusta with class and how that was a far cry from the way Lebron handled the loss against Dallas.
You see, both Lebron and Rory have a big facet of their lives in common. Both are supposed to be the ‘next big thing.’ Lebron is supposed to be the heir apparent to Michael Jordan. Rory is supposed to be the heir apparent to Tiger.
But, it’s apparent that is where the similarities stop.
It’s really discouraging to see an athlete like Lebron take defeat in such an immature fashion. Jordan was known as the guy who couldn’t win it all. Many said that Kobe Bryant couldn’t win without Shaquille O’Neal. Other sports had these types of players like Peyton Manning and Steve Walsh in the NFL and Mike Schmidt and Albert Pujols in baseball.
But, there was a discernable difference between those players and Lebron. When they were criticized for not being able to ‘win the big one’, their replies were either along the lines of ‘I will keep working at it and grow from this’ or ‘How dare you judge my greatness and I will prove to you just how great I am when I do win the big one in the future.’
You see, that’s how winners think. And that’s how Rory thought after his meltdown at Augusta this year. Instead, Lebron thinks that he can win a consolation prize by having what he perceives as a better life than the very people who pay his salary. There was no ‘hopefully this will build some character’ and ‘I will learn from this.’ More or less it was a ‘I make more money than you do so I must have a better life.’
Thankfully, Rory reaffirmed my thoughts about him and his attitude. And now he has a US Open title to his credit…and the same amount of NBA Championship rings as Lebron does.