I don’t think there has ever been a more dramatic NBA Finals ever.
Let’s see. The Celtics dynasty of the 50’s and 60’s. The classic 80’s where the 76ers finally got it done. Followed by the Celtics and Lakers. Then, after the Bad Boys of Detroit, the Phil Jackson run of titles. First with Michael Jordan’s Bulls, then with Kobe, Shaq and the Lakers. The consistent, steady greatness of the Spurs, spread out for almost two decades.
And of course, the tale of Lebron.
Cleveland Part One. Not quite good enough to bring a title to a city that was a punch line when it came to championship success in sports.
Then, James’ jump to Miami and two crowns. Hooray for the Heat, a dagger for the Cavs.
What? Lebron is going back to Cleveland? A dagger for Miami, Hooray for Cleveland.
But only if it brought a title.
You all know the rest of the story.
Playing in the weaker Eastern Conference, and trailing 3 games to 1 against the team that broke the all-time regular season record, the Golden State Warriors 73-9 during the regular year, the Lebron-led Cavs stunned the Warriors, winning two of the last three in Oakland.
There have been great games in the history of the NBA Finals. And brilliantly played series.
But never, in my opinion, has there been a more dramatic, thrilling finish to a series with the kind of backdrop this one had.
A city’s damaged sports pride was on the line. And the man from Akron who came back to restore that pride, led the way in a most improbable manner.
Hail to the champions. Fifty-two years later, you cannot say Cleveland is the mistake on the Lake ANYMORE.