Before I launch into my post-NBA Finals rant, let me first say the following:
“My bad, LeBron.”
My bad for questioning your legacy on social media. My bad for exploiting the hashtag #LeBronAintNoKing – and using that as my Twitter name. My bad for posting meme, after meme, AFTER MEME that clowned your desire to step up and win more rings.
And most of all, my bad for doubting your Cavaliers when y’all were down 3-1.
After all, no other team in NBA history has come from 3-1 down to win an NBA Finals series, much less win Game 7 on the road. And the Cavs were thoroughly dominated by the Golden State Warriors by the conclusion of Game 4.
However, the Cavs showed a toughness that hadn’t been seen in the NBA Finals in recent memory. LeBron (and coach Tyrone Lue) led the resurgence, and the likes of Kyrie Irving and Tristan Thompson followed his lead.
Look at what happened after Game 4. The Cavs won Game 5 in convincing fashion on the road (yeah, I know famed nut-crusher Draymond Green was suspended, but a beat-down is a beat-down), blew the Warriors out in Game 6, and beat them AGAIN on their home floor in Game 7. If those were not the ultimate displays of toughness, then I don’t know what is.
And LeBron led the way.
His leadership has grown in spades over the years since winning his first title in Miami. LeBron has proven that he can take almost any team and make them instant title contenders through his sheer will.
He helped lead the Heat to four straight NBA Finals appearances, winning two of them. Before LeBron’s arrival, the Heat were good, but not great.
Before LeBron joined the Cavs, they were a consistent lottery team AT BEST. As a result, other cats around the league are looking to join this dude to chase rings.
Yup, you heard that right: Cleveland now is a desired destination for free agents and the league’s superstars.
And sure, Irving, Thompson, Kevin Love and Co. helped LeBron win the Finals last night. But I’ll tell ya this: there is no way in hell that Cleveland would have beaten the Warriors WITHOUT LeBron.
The city of Cleveland celebrated its first pro sports championship in 52 years – 52 years! – throughout the night, and the city has one person to thank for that.
LeBron James, the kid from nearby Akron.
If LeBron retired today, he would do so without anything to prove (not that he had much more to prove in the first place). He would also be a god in Cleveland for what he had done for the city.
We are all witnesses, King James…