Prior to the Cavaliers’ Opening Night tip-off on Tuesday night, team majority owner Dan Gilbert addressed the media to discuss the upcoming season. Given Gilbert’s notoriety, however, not every question revolved around the future as the fiery business man was asked to address the letter he penned following “The Decision,” wherein he guaranteed that his Cavaliers would win a championship before LeBron James.
“Looking back now, ” said Gilbert, “that probably was not the most brilliant thing I’ve ever done in my life. If you’re going to predict something that doesn’t happen and you’re going to do it publicly, you’d for sure take it back.”
Following James’ nationally televised announcement surrounding his decision to leave in free agency and join the Miami Heat, Gilbert released a letter in which – not aided by his font choice of Comic Sans – he stated that he ”personally guaranteed” that the Cavaliers would win an NBA championship before the “self-titled former ‘king.” The Heat, along with James, won the 2011-12 NBA Championship in five games, topping the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Alas, Gilbert was wrong. He and the Cavaliers, in the meantime, can now focus solely on themselves, ignoring the (admittedly self-induced) noise which accompanied them every step of the way following the mid-June ESPN telecast.
“We want to win as much as the fans do,” Gilbert said. “No matter how long it takes, and no matter what it takes, we’re just going to keep going until we get there.”
[Related: As the curtains are raised, the new-look Cavaliers win one for Cleveland]