The Miami Heat have taken considerable, uh, heat for LeBron James' July comment that he sees his team winning ("not one, not two ...") seven or more NBA championships. Confidence is triumphed until it's not, and the tipping point usually has to do with a certain level of boldness or disbelief. No core since the '60s Celtics has won more than six titles; as such, LeBron's prediction came off gauche and unrealistic (at best).
"If you don't see something special in Derrick Rose, then you're blind," Reinsdorf said. "We have an outstanding coach, an outstanding bunch of players, the team is deep, and if we stay healthy, we have an awfully good chance of winning at least four championships."
A bold prediction of my own: Reinsdorf and the Bulls won't receive a fraction of the howls LeBron received, and should Chicago have a bad run this season and fall short, few will revisit Jerry's statement. There's something about star athletes in general and LeBron specifically that invites the outrage, as if James hasn't earned the right to talk about leading a dynasty when he hasn't even won a title yet. Reinsdorf has six championships, several of which he paid a lot of money for. (Michael Jordan was making $30 million a year at the end of his career, and this was a decade ago.)
That said, what a statement. The Spurs have won four championship in the last 11 seasons, and the Lakers have five since 2000. Reinsdorf is saying that his front office has built the Spurs or Lakers, and that Rose is the new Duncan or Kobe. What a hell of a lot of pressure to put on a 22-year-old.