Art Modell may deny this now but he once told me this story and I don't believe he was joking.
He talked about a bad dream he once had where everywhere he went -- the kitchen, the office, the bathroom -- there were Cleveland Browns fans scolding him for moving the Browns to Baltimore.
He laughed after telling me this story but it didn't sound like he was kidding.
Modell became one of the most hated -- if not the most hated -- man in that city's history. Modell had the right to move his team. It was his team, after all. He could do what he wanted but Modell knew he'd also have to live with the consequences of such a dire action.
Now, LeBron James is considering leaving Cleveland. In a way, James is his own franchise. He is the Cleveland Cavaliers. So ostensibly if he bolted it'd be like Cleveland losing another team.
And who'd be more despised, Modell or James? It's a good question.
It seems like Modell, easily, and maybe that's correct. I've never seen a sports figure more hated by an entire city than Modell except for possibly Steve Bartman by Chicago.
Yet the hatred of Modell has slightly ebbed. Emphasis on slightly. Cleveland lost a team but it has one now.
James leaving would be an open wound. It would be viewed as a second betrayal and because it'd be so recent the sting might hurt even more.
If he leaves James had better be prepared for some heavy, unmitigated scorn. It'll be something like he's never seen or experienced in his life.
There may also be a few bad dreams, too.