The Miami Heat Ban Esquire Writer Scott Raab for Calling LeBron "The Whore of Akron"

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The Miami Heat continue to take pages right out of the Hugo Chavez playbook when it comes to working with members of the press. If you write anything the organization doesn't particularly like you're pretty much banned. New Times itself has suffered such a fate, and now we welcome Esquire magazine writer Scott Raab to the fold. Silly Heat, don't they know Esquire has a proud history of covering subjects with out having official access to them? Though Raab still has some plans to sneak into American Airlines Arena before he resorts to penning "LeBron Jame Has a Cold."

Raab is a native of Cleveland and has been a writer for Esquire since 1997. He's been chronicling LeBron's free agency period and subsequent decision to take his talents to South Beach for the past few months for both Esquire and Deadspin, and as you can expect it hasn't exactly all been kind.

Apparently the final straw came when he wrote that LeBron was the "Whore of Akron" in a post for Esquire this Monday. That's when he received a short email from Tim Donovan, head of media relations for the Miami Heat:
"Scott:

You are no longer welcome at our building and will not be credentialed moving forward.

Tim"
Raab has a whole lot riding on his ability to cover The Heat, including a deal to publish a book about the matter in early 2012. So he's going to test exactly what exactly "no longer welcome at our building" means.

"The Heat play Wednesday and Friday; I plan to attend both games as a civilian with a ticket in hand -- God knows there are plenty of tickets to be had -- and it's probably too late to buy a LeBron James mask," he writes. "If I'm lucky, I might be the first fan in NBA history to be tossed out of an arena for writing."

This isn't the first time The Heat have banned journalists and media outlets from covering games. Even though we here at Riptide and New Times spill our fair share of positive ink about the team some long-ago article that rubbed the front office the wrong way has assured we're pretty much persona non grata at AAA. The Heat even barred us from interviewing a superfan known as Banana Man earlier this year.

Though, the banning of Esquire shouldn't be that much of a surprise. LeBron and The Heat have always been more GQ kind of guys anyway.

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