What Did the World Look Like Last Time Lebron Missed the Playoffs?

What did the world look like last time Lebron James missed the playoffs???

Lebron James has been synonymous with the NBA since the day he was drafted in 2003. Having made the playoffs for 14 straight years and the NBA finals 8 straight years, its next to impossible imagining the NBA postseason without its leading character. However, after signing out west with the Los Angeles Lakers this past off-season and all but guaranteeing an end to the franchises personal 5 year playoff drought just by his mere presence, the basketball gods decided to scoff at King James’s confusingly receding hairline by eliminating the Lakers from playoff contention a full month before the playoffs themselves. To help communicate the oddity that is Lebron James missing the playoffs more clearly, were going to show not just how the NBA looked in 2005,(the last time the playoffs took place without Lebron) but how the U.S as a whole looked almost a decade and a half ago.


Neglecting the Kardsashians???

That’s right, everyone’s favorite TV family had yet to  premiere their earth shattering reality show, “Keeping up with the Kardashians”. In 2005, the family was only known for Robert (Kim, Khloe, and Kourtney’s father) who represented O.J Simpson during his murder trial. Kim only garnered media exposure because she was close friends with Paris Hilton. It’s quite strange imagining a  world where Kylie was only 8 years old and Kendall 10.


Myspace rules the social media scape

Having been founded in 2003, Myspace was in the midst of its heyday ruling the social networking world. It’s hard to remember just how big and valuable Myspace was at the time because of the sites state nowadays but it  sold for $580 million in 2005. Only two years later in  2007, it was valued at $12 billion!  It took another year before Myspace officially fell behind Facebook for most used social network on the web, a title it never regained.


17 year old Rihanna introduces herself to the world

RiRi released her first single, “Pon de Replay”,in May of 2005 which peaked at top 5 in fifteen countries and announced Rihanna as a star. Months later in August, she dropped her debut album “Music of the Sun”  which went on to sell over 2 million copies worldwide. Rihanna has gone on to establish herself as a global superstar since and envisioning her even before she had umbrellas for us to stand under is bizarre.


Patriots win the Superbowl, some things never change

In February of 2005, Tom Brady led the New England Patriots to their third Super Bowl victory in four seasons, leading some to label the Patriots a football dynasty. Analysts were still years away from referring to the combo of Brady and Head Coach Bill Belichek as the best ever, reportedly only calling them “really, really, really good”. Having only won three Super Bowls since 2005, the Patriots are really in “freefall mode” (just joking, I don’t know if the patriots know how to lose anymore).


“Star Wars” finally concludes after 30 years (or so we thought)

LucasFilms released their sixth and final Star Wars Film, “Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith” in May of 2005, concluding the trilogy of far superior sequels (only kidding). The film grossed $848.8 million at the box office and generally garnered positive reviews. Many viewed this as the end of an era as it was expected to be the final big budget “Star Wars” film created.


“Call of Duty 2” hits the ground running

Now a yearly money printing license for Activision, the “Call of Duty” video game franchise had only released its second title by the end of 2005. Coined as one of the launch titles for Microsoft’s new console the Xbox 360, “Call of Duty 2”  was praised for its graphics, sound and regenerative health system, which by now is a staple in every “Call of Duty” title.


Good ol reliable, the Motorola Razr

Eventually being released in every color imaginable, this flip phone revolutionized  the cell phone industry with its sleek and modern design while still having a slim and comfortable body. If you didn’t own one of these back in 2005, then you knew someone who did. Whether you were a newborn baby or a 95 year old in an old age home, you knew about this phone.


Mariah Carey dominates the charts

Mariah had been on a bit of a cold streak before releasing her chart topping album “The Emancipation of Mimi” in 2005. The album sold nearly 5 million copies, becoming the best-selling album in the U.S for the year. With five separate singles being released from the album, the unquestioned most popular was “We Belong Together”. The song topped the charts in the U.S and Australia and reached the top five everywhere from Denmark to New Zealand. Billboard even awarded the song the title of “song of the decade”. I’d say that’s   a pretty successful comeback.


Steve Nash MVP

Newcomers to the Phoenix Suns, Steve Nash and  head coach Mike D’antoni, were in the midst of revolutionizing the NBA with their patented “7 seconds or less” offense in 2005. Nash, being a Canadian national, managed to apologize his way to his first of back to back MVP (Most Valuable Player) awards.


George Bush round two

George W. Bush had just entered his second term as president of the United States. His inauguration being held in January of 2005, he defeated John Kerry in the presidential election only two months prior. Public opinion of Bush at this point was generally mixed, mainly due  to issues revolving around the war in Iraq.


Instagram not even a thought

Only being founded in 2010, one of today’s most popular social media outlets, “Instagram” wasn’t even a thought. The apps founders, Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger, were still in school at Stanford University where they would eventually meet and team up to create the photo sharing interface years later. Imagine a world where you can’t see everyone’s daily outfits, seems pretty relaxing to me.


Batman hadn’t begun

Christopher Nolan’s trilogy of Batman films captivated the entire world, returning Batman to his dark and gritty ways. However, in early 2005 people viewed Batman as laughable with  the last movie starring the caped crusader being  Joel Shumacher’s ill fated 1997 film “Batman and Robin”. Let’s all just take a minute to sit back and appreciate the fact that  Christian Bale claimed the role as the billionaire crime fighter in “Batman Begins”, which was released in the summer of 2005.


The world gets introduced to “Grey’s Anatomy”

The renowned medical drama had only just entered our homes. Mcdreamy was not yet a household name and Dr. Meredith Grey a lowly intern, Grey’s Anatomy was just beginning its run in what can only be described as a cultural phenomenon. Now on it’s 15th season and with no signs of slowing down, the show has turned its leading actors into international superstars while simultaneously keeping viewers on the edge of their seats  for the better part of fifteen years.


The Chicago White Sox end a nearly century long drought

2005 was the year in which the first of Chicago’s two baseball teams ended their ridiculously long championship drought.  Winning their first World Series since 1917, the White Sox erased 88 years of sadness. Chicago Cubs fans would have to wait another eleven years before they broke their personal 108 year long championship drought in 2016. Suffice to say, it isn’t fun being a Chicago baseball fan.


Brad and Angelina’s romance blossoms

The tabloid stirring film “Mr and Mrs Smith” starring Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie premiered in the summer of 2005. While the movie itself received mixed reviews, it is now known as the factor that brought Brad and Angelina  together, in the process destroying Pitt’s marriage to Jennifer Aniston. The power couple had six kids together, three of whom were adopted, and in the process became Hollywood’s “it” couple for the better part of a decade before  separating  in 2016.


The e-mail machine, also known as the Blackberry 7100

Back in 2005, being able to send an email on the fly was considered a luxury. Hence, any and every corporate worker owned a Blackberry as it was the only device reliable and small enough(though not that small) to do the job. But what about the rest of us regular people who wanted to send emails without having to use the brick like Blackberry? Well in 2005, the Blackberry 7100 captured the intrigue of regular consumers by putting two letters on each number key, instead of the regular three, thereby creating a path for Blackberry to enter household market.


The Black Eyed Peas find success

The Black Eyed Peas released their fourth studio album “Monkey Business” on June 7, 2005. The lead single “Don’t Phunk With My Heart” was the groups first top 5 hit, reaching number 3 on the Billboard Hot 100. “Don’t Lie”, the album’s second single also received commercial success peaking at 14 on the hot 100. However, the unquestioned hit of the album was the controversial “My Humps”, reaching number 3 like the albums lead. The song was heavily criticized due to its title and lyrical content.


Youtube gets off to a “mammoth” esque start

The first Youtube video EVER was uploaded on April 23, 2005. The video titled, “Me at the zoo”  is a short 19 second clip of Youtube co-founder, Jawed Karim, explaining his profound interest in elephants as they have, and I quote “really really really long trunks”. The video was shot  with Jawed standing in front of an elephant exhibit at, yup you guessed it, the zoo. Offering a public beta test of the site in May, Youtube officially launched on December 15, 2005.


The Big Diesel’s 1st season in Miami

It may be hard to believe but businessman and current Papa John’s board member, Shaquille O’neal, actually used to be a professional basketball player back in 2005. Having spent the better part of a decade in sunny Los Angeles, Shaq was starting his first season playing in the equally sunny Miami. He had yet to lead Miami to its first championship in franchise history.


Not so Fantastic Four

Nowadays it’s impossible to walk five feet without someone mentioning one of a billion new Marvel superhero movies being released. However, back in 2005 not all superhero movies were as streamlined as they are today. With leading actors Jessica Alba and Chris Evans(who would later go on to play Captain America in subsequent films), Marvel’s first attempt at a live action Fantastic Four film seemed like a safe bet. Releasing in July of 2005, the film was met with almost entirely negative reviews, instructing Marvel on what not to do in the future.


The Pussycat Dolls announce themselves in spectacular fashion

Led by vocal powerhouse, Nicole Scherzinger, The Pussycat Dolls released their debut album, titled “PCD”.  Of the many hits on the album, lead single “Don’t Cha” received the most commercial success, making its way all the way to number two on the Billboard Hot 100. The following year, “The Pussycat Dolls” become some of the top selling artists of 2006, starting their trajectory into establishing themselves as one of the most successful girl groups of all time.


We don’t know how to meet mothers!!!

After the “Friends” series finale in 2004, people were searching for a new group of pals to hang out with while sitting in  their living rooms. Luckily they didn’t have to wait long, as “How I Met Your Mother” (HIMYM for short) premiered in 2005, immediately sliding into the “group of friends” sitcom slot left vacant by “Friends”. The show eventually became so popular it spawned real life products such as “The Playbook” based on Barney’s so called “Bible” for hitting on women from the show.


“Facebook” is in its infancy

Having been established at the beginning of 2004, “TheFacebook” was originally launched as a networking site for college students. The social network started 2005 by dropping “The” from the websites name, becoming just “Facebook”. By  years end, the site had expanded its scope to high school and even select companies such as Apple and Microsoft. It would be another full year before the site even opened its doors to the general public and allow anyone over 13 years old to create an account.


Kelly Clarkson at the top of her game

Releasing her hit album “Breakaway” at the end of 2004, Kelly decided to completely dominate 2005 with hit after hit. Similar to Mariah, Kelly released five singles off her album,  “Since U Been Gone”, “Behind These Hazel Eyes”, “Because of You”, “Walk Away”, and “Breakaway”. Each song itself is a banger but together, they cultivated and led the way for what mid 2000’s pop would sound like. Having previously won American Idol and releasing an album before “Breakaway”, Kelly used 2005 as her personal catapult into super-stardom.


Sony breaks the cell phone market with the Ericsson

To emphasize just how special this phone was back in 2005 when it was released, we’ve decided to grab this quote from the original TechRadar review.

“This is no ordinary top-of-the-range camera phone…. It is the life and soul of the party thanks to its on-board music player, radio tuner, games and full range of GPRS download services.”

That’s right, not only could you take videos with the camera and listen to the radio , but you could also play music straight from the phone. Pretty crazy stuff.

Peyton Manning wins his second of five MVPs

Due to his enormous awards shelf and even larger forehead, Peyton Manning is considered by many to be one of the greatest QBs of all time. Back in 2005, Manning had yet to win his first Super Bowl and was only on his second of a record setting five MVP awards. On top of all this, Peyton was still two years away from screaming at children on Saturday Night Live, which we all know is his real crowning achievement


Hurricane Katrina wrecks its way through the southeast

In the summer of 2005, Hurricane Katrina devastated the southeast of the United States, causing over $100 billion in damages and killing nearly 2,000 people. Displacing approximately 1,000,000 people from their homes, the storm was the costliest natural disaster in U.S history until Hurricane Harvey reached the same monetary damage in 2017. The category 5 hurricane brought major criticism upon the government, primarily due to the lack of leadership and mismanagement in regards to the  relief efforts.


Harry’s a what???

The final book in the “Harry Potter” saga, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows”  was still two years away from being released while Warner Brothers were only half way through releasing their decades worth of “Harry Potter” flicks, with “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire” coming out in late 2005. With four movies and a book left to release, you have to feel bad for 2005 J.K Rowling. She was only extremely rich and not extraordinarily rich at this point.


Michael Scott had yet to offend anyone

Based on the British TV show of the same name, the American version of“The Office” premiered in 2005. Now a cult classic, the show was initially met with mixed reviews during its first season. Steve Carell was almost too busy to even star in the show  as he was originally cast as a replacement for a different NBC comedy by the name of “Come to Papa”. Thankfully that show got cancelled, freeing up Carell to play the role of the world’s best boss, Michael Scott.


The internet’s home page is created

Considered by many to be the so called “home page of the internet”, reddit was conceived and launched in 2005. Then just college roommates, reddit founders Steve Huffman and Alexis Ohanian originally planned to focus on a project called “My Mobile Menu” in which a person could order food through an SMS text message. After the idea failed, the pair had a brainstorming session where they birthed the idea for reddit. In June of 2005 the site went live, forever altering social news aggregation and ushering us into the modern age of the internet.


Carrie Underwood wins “American Idol”

Running from January 18 until May 25, 2005, the fourth season of “American Idol” created the second megastar winner of the series. With Paula Abdul, Simon Cowell, and Randy Jackson smiling from behind the judges desk, Carrie Underwood defeated Bo Bice in the finale while over 30 million people watched on from their televisions. Carrie would obviously go on to accomplish much more than just winning the uber-competitive singing competition, but at the time she was still just simple country girl from Oklahoma.


Jamie Foxx dominates 2005

Jamie Foxx received the Academy Award for Best actor with his portrayal of Ray Charles in “Ray”. In addition to winning the Oscar for best actor in 2005, Foxx also collaborated with Kanye West on the hit track “Gold Digger”. The single was 2005’s second longest holder of number 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 and even broke the then record of digital downloads in a week with 80,000. Nowadays that record belongs to Adele’s “Hello” with over 1,000,000 downloads. To quote a former chart topper, “The times are a-changin”.


NHL spurns fans with season long lockout

The year of 2005 represented the darkest stage in NHL history. Disputes in the collective bargaining agreement resulted in the cancellation of the entire NHL season. 1,230 games went unplayed and the Stanley cup went unawarded for the first time since 1919. The stalemate lasted a total of ten months and six days, mercifully ending on July 22, 2005.


50 Cent changes the rap game

Having the #1 track on the Billboard top 100 for 9 weeks, 50 Cent took 2005 as an opportunity to bid his case for hip-hop royalty. “Candy Shop” being 50’s main hit of the year, he also dropped “Disco Inferno” in late 2004 and featured on The Game’s track “How We Do”. At one point in 2005 all three singles were in the Billboard top five in the same week, making 50 the first solo artist to achieve the prestigious feat.


We were all still lost

Before the show got too ridiculous for its own good, “Lost” premiered its second season,  captivating audiences in ways never before seen on television. The series was at the height of its power in 2005, releasing its second season to an absurd audience of over 23 million people. By far its largest premiere, “Lost”’s numbers would slowly dwindle until its series finale in 2010.


2005 Dollar Baby

“Million Dollar Baby” won 4 Acadamy Awards at the 2005 ceremony, including Best Picture and Best Actress thanks to the performance of it’s lead, Hilary Swank. Having not seen a good, original boxing film since the Rocky movies, audiences needed a new redemptive story surrounding boxing and “Million  Dollar Baby” fit that criteria twofold.


Twitter wasn’t even twttr

In 2005, two men named  Noah Glass and Evan Williams, were working on a project called “Odea” which was designed to allow the creation, recording and sharing of  podcasts. Nearly a year later, two other entrepreneurs, Jack Dorsey and Biz Stone, approached Glass and Williams about the idea for Twitter, or what they called it at the time, twttr. Two weeks later they had a working prototype and in July of 2006, the four would launch Twitter, changing the way information is shared forever.


Destiny’s child officially announces they’re disbanding

On June 11 2005, Kelly Rowland of Destiny’s Child announced that the R&B icons would be splitting up and heading there separate ways. Having been nominated for 14 total Grammys, it was the end of an era. The group would reunite multiple times for various performances, most notably during Beyonce’s Super Bowl performance in 2013, but haven’t recorded any new songs since the announcement. On the bright side, it freed up Beyonce to become the Queen B we all know and love today.


XBOX 360 takes first step as a next gen console

With competitor Sony’s Playstation 2 dominating the console market, Microsoft had to do something special with it next generation of console to level the playing and it did just that with the XBOX 360. Releasing at the tailend of 2005 in late November, the console sold so well upon initial release that the supply wasn’t large enough to meet consumer demands. With its emphasis on digital media and the multiplayer experience, the console helped usher in the modern age of gaming.