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It's not the "what" or "why" of LeBron-to-Cleveland that's most interesting, it's the "how"


LeBron James is once again a Cleveland Cavalier. Perhaps you've heard by now.

For the "what" and the "why" of this discussion, you can head to ESPN, Grantland, Yahoo, and every other sports website on the planet. I'm most interested in the "how."

After the unmigitated public-relations disaster that was "The Decision", it was beyond a given that LeBron would go a different route this time around. Most assumed it would be on his own website, or if not, it'd be broken by Adrian Wojnarowski at Yahoo, Marc Stein or Chris Broussard at ESPN, or Sam Amick at USA Today. No one predicted this.

In the end, LeBron informed the world he was going home through a letter as told to Lee Jenkins of Sports Illustrated. Clearly this was a calculated decision - every decision LeBron has made since age 15 has been calculated - and, this time around, it was the right one.

After referring to his four years in Miami as his "college years" LeBron clearly learned from the way his entrance to Miami was presented. No television special, no pep rally. LeBron made the announcement in his own words, and that's it.

LeBron letter

As for another tentacle of this far-reaching story, what a win for Sports Illustrated. It beat Yahoo, it beat the Worldwide Leader and, following Michael Sam's announcement back February, SI has now positioned itself as the place for news-making athletes to speak in their own words. 

LeBron has the power to turn the Eastern Conference completely on its head.

He could do the same to the shoe market if he switched from Nike to Adidas. And his power stretches to the people who cover him, as well. Who else could make a magazine this relevant in 2014?

LeBron is undisputably the most powerful athlete of his generation. It's nice to see he's learned how to use it.