Just take a look at that photo on the left. Look at the expression on his face. That’s not an expression of pain, it’s clearly one of fear and disbelief. LeCharles Bentknee clearly thought that he was better than the Cleveland Curse. He obviously thought that he had already established himself as a force in the league, and that some silly jinx couldn’t stop a guy like him. Looking at that photo, it’s like 40+ years of the cleveland jimx is whispering in his ear “you had no idea what you got your self into, did you?” Frankly, he looks like he already wants out.
LeCharles got here and said he wanted to be “that guy” in Cleveland. He can now check off that box. He has officially accomplished everything that “that guy” typically accomplishes in Cleveland. Would it be any surprise if he never donned the grey facemask again? Would we at all be surprised if Kamerion Wimbley went down on a freakish play this year? After all, you’re clearly not allowed to see the playing field in Cleveland if you’re a big money free agent, or a first round draft pick.
So is there a curse? A jinx? A, might I suggest, Burning River? I’m not a curse/jinx believing guy, but I have to argue that nothing like this has ever happened to another sports city in the history of sport. It’s almost like it’s being done by design–everytime we are shown a glimmer of optimism and get our hopes up a little, they are crushed like so many Patellar Tendons. I won’t outline them here, we all know what I’m talking about. Sure, Boston had the Red Sox for 90 years, but they also had the Celtics win it all like 16 times, plus the Patriots and Bruins. Chicago has the Cubs, but they’ve also recently had the greatest basketball player of all time, the Bears, and the White Sox win a championship. That’s enough to tide one city over for a lifetime.
Also, it is worth mentioning that our little jinx has a particular fondness for Pro Bowl selections. The last guy to bring a Pro-Bowl appearance to his resume (Jamir Miller), why he never played a down of football after appearing in Hawaii. You may think it stops there, but go back to the 90’s, and to arguably our best defensive player in Eric Turner. He made the Pro Bowl the last year the old Browns were here…and then he died 5 years later at the age of 31.
So what’s behind all of this? Is Cleveland really built on an ancient Indian buyial ground? Is it the curse of Rocky Colavito? Is it God? Art Modell? The actual Burning River? Want my best guess? I think it’s Jim Brown. Yeah that’s right, why not? Ever since he announced his retirement we haven’t won anything. I mean, it’s as good of a guess as any. Maybe the source of the curse that is speaking to Bentknee in that picture is the same spirit that talked Jim Brown into retiring at the age of 29 to make bad movies, and the same force that cause Art Modell to make bad business move after move, before eventually moving to Baltimore where he went broke in 5 years.
Pretty sad state of affairs when I’m blaming Jim Brown. It’s clearly gotten a little ridiculous around here. Guess that what happens to you when your teams constantly get beaten down in the most incredible ways. The sad part is, i’ve already said to myself “well, he’ll be back next year, and by then we should have a real shot at contention.”