Bob Ley has a message for LeBron James: Don't bite the hand that feeds you.
Those were the undertones of a tweet the longtime ESPN broadcaster sent to the four-time NBA MVP this week after James had some anti-ESPN advice for Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo.
James and Romo conferenced after the Heat's victory over the Mavericks in Dallas this week, and according to reports, James told Romo not to let all the doubters get to his head. Both James, as the best and most polarizing player in the NBA, and Romo, as quarterback of arguably the most popular team in the country, have been the constant subjects of sports talk shows.
"Just don't care what everybody thinks," James told Romo. "If you care about your craft and at the end of the day if you went out there and you gave it everything you had and you laid it out on the line for your teammates, you can sleep comfortably at night. Don't watch ESPN and all these so-called 'everyone knows what to do that ain't never put on a uniform, trying to tell you what to do' [shows].
Upon reading James' words, Ley was a little ticked. Ley, the longest-tenured employee at ESPN and the host of Outside the Lines, called James out on his hypocrisy.
Help me here, @KingJames. "Don't watch ESPN." - except when you're the focus of a 1 hr show annoucing your free agent destination?
— Bob Ley (@BobLeyESPN) February 19, 2014
Ouch. True, James has benefitted lots from ESPN and its constant coverage of him. That said, he's got a good point in what he tells Romo. There are so many voices inundating the ears of professional athletes these days that it's hard to know who to listen to and who to ignore.
Of course, James isn't telling Romo to never watch ESPN. But there are certain shows, and specifically certain hosts, who only serve to antagonize.