This week, the rumor that's been swirling on the fringes of mainstream media since Spring finally confronted one of its alleged subjects. Delonte West was asked whether he slept with Gloria James and issued a grade-A non-denial denial:
"I'm gonna keep everything focused on basketball. But, you know, I come from an era where, you don't need to say nothing bad about no one's parents...so, not at all."
What does it mean? Now internet pundits are positing that if he did have sex with Gloria James-- well, wouldn't talking about it be saying something bad about somebody's parents? Eh? Eh?We're unsatisfied, and so is the world-- just start typing "Gloria James" or "Delonte West" into Google and see what it suggests.
For the blissfully unacquainted, the rumor is that, well, you probably picked up on the basic gist by now. The details and tentacles of the rumor are as varied and wild-- LeBron walked in on them together in his Boston hotel room during last year's playoffs; it's the reason he left Cleveland-- as the internet's imagination.
Nobody's publicly asked LeBron about it-- although the author of GQ's August cover story on him says he considered it. But we are entering a long, media-crazy season, with LeBron forced to stand in front of a cavalcade of reporters almost every other day. Some reporter-- ballsy, drunk, or having just accepted a buy-out-- is going to pop the question. Lets hedge the bets as to where this valiant newsperson is going to come from.
ESPN: Ha! The World Wide Leader in LeBron Ego Massage reportedly even has an in-house rule against mentioning the rumor.
The Miami Herald: Again, too lily-livered.
Us: Not likely, unless we get together the cash to sky-write "Did Delonte Boink Your Mom?" above his Coral Gables mansion. The Heat long ago stopped letting us get anywhere near American Airlines Arena-- or its resident Banana Men.
Some crazy radio jock: This is who finally got through to Delonte West-- but now Heat's media shields are going to be on high-alert for anybody named something like Muff or Sal the Kraut who usually makes their living farting on-air.Nick Broomfield: He's the guy who filmed documentaries aiming to ask Suge Knight if he arranged Tupac Shakur's killing, and ask Courtney Love if she killed Kurt Cobain. He is, theoretically, the world's foremost fearless question-popper. But if you've seen his films you'll know something always happens-- he suddenly loses his nerve, he runs out of videotape-- right before the big planned question. He'd probably trip on Zydrunas Ilgauskas' spindly legs and smash his microphone as he approaches LeBron in the locker room.
Geraldo Rivera: He's the dark horse in this one. Never count him out.
A correspondent from a foreign variety show: This feels the most likely. They don't need repeat credentials, they'll do anything to shock their viewers, and they peddle to the lowest common denominator. Have you ever watched Mexican TV?
Of course, somebody could just ask LeBron's mom.