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Cavaliers Win Championship

Cavaliers Erik Drost via Flickr

NBA

After 52 years, LeBron was able to bring a Championship to Cleveland. It took a historic finals performance to supersede the team that broke Jordan’s Bulls’ regular season win record. Down 3-1, LeBron willed his team to a Game 7 where he put on the show of a lifetime.

While in a field with some of the greatest talent in the NBA, LeBron once again looked like a man amongst boys. In addition, he reminded the entire League that he is one of the greatest players of all time and no team can take that away from him.

The Cavaliers did exactly what they had to. Everyone showed up and treated this like a Finals game. Kevin Love played the boards very well, Tristan Thompson brought his defense to Oakland, and JR Smith delivered some timely threes. When the Cavs were down, they kept their composure. When the Cavs were up, they pounded away in fear of a Warriors run.

LeBron finished the game with an impeccable stat line. He had another triple double in which he tallied 27 points. While LeBron was able to put up those numbers, Kyrie Irving was once again able to play off of him. Irving was magical on the floor and put a tremendous pressure on the Warriors’ guards. He was able to finish at the rim at will which was a big part of his 26 points. Although, no part was bigger than his dagger of a three to seal the Cavaliers fate in this game.

It didn’t seem possible, but Cleveland did a good job of taking the crowd out of the equation. This effort by the Cavaliers had a noticeable impact on the game. Curry was not his usual self. Curry struggled to get his shot off, was smothered off ball, and on some instances, was taken out of the equation entirely. He finished the game with a measly 17 points.

This step by Coach Lue taken by design. Tyronn Lue was able to construct a defense, and offense, predicated on immobilizing Curry. All eyes were on him the entire series. This paved the way for Draymond Green’s 18 points from beyond the arc as he was able to slip past the defense. This is normally a problem but Steph wasn’t effective during Draymond’s run. Due to Curry’s ability to take over a game, the Cavaliers were willing to live with every single Warrior hitting 3’s so long as it wasn’t number 30.

This was a defining moment in LeBron’s career. This one series has purged all his demons. No longer is he the man who has four Finals losses. He is the man who has 3 rings and completed the greatest Finals comeback in NBA history. He is the man who is considered one of the greatest NBA players of all time. He is the man who ended the Championship drought in Cleveland.

Whatever happens next for LeBron is minuscule in comparison to this Championship. Any further shortcoming in his career is a footnote, and any other success LeBron finds is just another line on his already punched Hall of Fame ballot. Nothing he can do will eclipse this legendary Finals story. Therefore, the rest of LeBron’s career will be simply be used as a measuring stick to compare him to other all-time greats. If you are LeBron James, that is more than enough to keep chasing rings and seeking glory for Cleveland. Expect him to be back in this position next year.

 

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