If you've ever seen the movie You've Got Mail, you'll understand the concept I'm trying to convey here.
In the film, Meg Ryan owns a small book store that goes out of business due to a large discount book chain managed by Tom Hanks that moves in across the street. While Ryan is hurt and confused by his blatant squashing of her store, he continually repeats the mantra "it's not personal, it's business."
So how does this chick flick relate to the NBA? Well, it's more the underlying message than the vessel you have to focus on, because in a recent interview with Sports Illustrated, Miami Heat center Chris Bosh echoed the a similar message as Hanks' character in the movie, "it's not personal, it's business."
Though not quite on the same level as his counterpart, LeBron James, Bosh received a fair amount of criticism for choosing to fly south for the winter. His departure from Toronto to Miami was compared to that of LeBron in Cleveland, as he was also accused of mailing it in midway through the 2009-10 season.
When asked by Sports Illustrated's Paul Forrester where loyalty to your former team ranks when you're a free agent, Bosh put it bluntly … it doesn't rank at all.
"It should have none," Bosh replied when asked what place loyalty has in free agency. "Loyalty is an added bonus. It's great that some guys want to be loyal, but you can be unhappy trying to be loyal, and there's no reason to bring loyalty into the business room."
He went on to talk about the fans attachment to certain players, and how they shouldn't look at his departure as him abandoning them but as a smart business decision on his part.
"People have to look at it as a business," Bosh said. "Fans get very wrapped around it because it's a sport. And sports are a little different but they're businesses first and that's how we have to choose sometimes. Sometimes people understand, sometimes people don't."
I, for one, understand what Bosh is saying here, just as I understood Hanks' motives in You've Got Mail. What always gets me is the fact that it feels so cold-hearted. The way Bosh — like James — went about the departure was all wrong.
Bosh packed it in when the Raptors could have made a legitimate run toward a playoff spot letting down the organization and the fans alike. He faked an injury in April, a key contending time for Toronto. He tweeted pictures of dinner dates with Dwyane Wade. He made a spectacle of himself during his free agency, and during that WWE-inspired introduction to Miami fans. And now he's pulling out the stone face and saying "it was a business decision."
I don't buy it.