Thursday, May 13, 2010

LeBron vs. The World

Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Boston Celtics
Game 6, 2010 NBA Playoffs
The biggest NBA game in 20 years.

The fallout from this game will be much, much bigger than the game itself. This game could singlehandedly shape the league for the next 10 years. We will judge the game not only by who wins or loses, or the score, but by how Sir LeBron plays, and maybe more importantly, the way he carries himself.

All the talk is that The LeBron mailed it in on Tuesday for their Game 5 blowout defeat. I couldn't see the game due to a long, mysterious rampage through Lawrence, but have seen all the highlights and heard all the analysis. I don't think he Kobe'd it (def: n. Purposely playing bad, forcing your teammates to win the game on their own in an effort to upstage them and show their unworthiness, i.e. Lakers vs. Suns Game 7 in the 2007 NBA Playoffs- Kobe takes three shots and scores one point in the second half after scoring 23 in the first half. In a Game 7!) I believe DaBron to be more of the frontrunner type, without having faced much adversity in his professional life, which led to his mishandling of it.

My biggest beef with ZeBron is that he doesn't seem fully committed to winning, while he, and the media, act as if he is as accomplished as anybody in history. He prides himself on upstaging opponents while dancing on the sidelines before and during games. I see little reason why he should ever shoot jump shots, when he's nearly unstoppable when attacking the basket. His biggest comparison was Magic Johnson, because of his court vision, and ability to pass the ball, yet upon his arrival to the league, he's seemed more interested in scoring and dunking than righting the chemistry and confidence of his teammates. The worst part is that this leads to very boring play. I previously called him 'the most exciting boring superstar in sports' and did so because his teammates will just stand around and wait for him to do something. It's not good basketball. Borderline all-stars (Mo Williams, Antawn Jamison, Shaq's remaining parts) have joined him only to see their play decline. I don't fully blame him for this, but I do believe it is underdiscussed. This is what happens when unfair expectations are handed to teenagers.

If the LeBrons lose this game, I see little reason for him to return to the Cavs. The only reasoning would be his want to win a Championship for his hometown team. This game trumps all other games due to his pending free agency, and how every team is cheering for the Celtics to close the series, praying for a shot at LeBron (or the best consolation prize of all-time in D-Wade). People have been discussing what LeBron would do this offseason since he signed his last contract three years ago. It could all come down to this game. The funny part, after all of this derogatory chatter, is that he could come out and dominate tonight, win Game 7, and go on to win the NBA Championship this year. It's hard to imagine the Celtics rebounding for a Game 7 victory on the road if they lose tonight. It all comes down to this game.

So what will happen? I see LeBron coming out as aggressive as ever, taking it to the basket hard each possession, and getting the calls to encourage him to continue to do so. Everything from this game will be heavily analyzed, including the refs, the fans, Bron's supporting cast, and lets not forget that the Celtics are actually playing in this game. I smell a Cavalier 7 point halftime lead. I smell LeBron going off for 37 points, 9 rebounds, and 6 assists. I smell Bron's teammates not able to rise to the occassion. I smell the Celtics laying it all on the line in front of a crazy atmosphere. I smell a Celtics comeback victory. And I smell, no, the whole room reeks, of LeBron wearing a Knicks jersey come next year, sitting atop the throne of LeBronx, with Cavs fans relegated to the memories of how quickly he went from LeBron to LeGone.


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