by Holly MacKenzie / @stackmack
Well, well well. Cleveland gets nine days off and they come out flat. Nah, not a chance. Not on MVP night for LeBron James.
I got chills, tingles and I couldn’t stop smiling as they showed the entire Cavs team standing pregame watching LeBron get his award.
I also thought it was funny to think of the morning shootaround where Bron didn’t return his trophy for the night ceremony because he forgot.
The Cavaliers easily took Game 1, winning 99-72 as the 2008-2009 MVP scored 34 points to go with 10 rebounds. While the game was competitive to start, the Hawks died in the second half and the Cavs pulled away without looking back. How appropriate it was that Bron’s first points of the game came on a dunk to punctuate his (near) perfect season at home. I’m such a damn sucker for trophy presentations. I loved seeing the fans in their WIT-MVP-NESS shirts. I also loved seeing Delonte West dish 9 assists to go with his 13 points and Mo Williams score 21. I didn’t think LeBron would come out flat, but I did think some of his teammates might. They proved me wrong.
Onto the Denver/Dallas game. The Nuggets closed out the third quarter strong thanks to a steal from Chauncey Billups, opened the fourth quarter on a 16-2 run and went on to run away with the victory from there. The final score was 117-105, but it felt as though the Nuggets had the game under control for all of the fourth.
They are just solid. I thought the series against the Hornets was more of a case of the Hornets playing horribly and not showing up (and I still think that occured), but in these two games against Dallas, I can’t help but be very impressed with the way the entire team has come out to play. Billups has everyone thinking hustle and everyone playing with heart. It’s a beautiful thing to see in Denver.
Now to see how they handle Dallas at home. I think the Mavs will get a game and I’m interested to see how the Nuggets respond.
Only bad thing here is the ankle of Josh Howard. The numerous replays of the actual ankle flip-flopping from Game 1 that they insisted on showing last night made me feel slightly ill. Hate to see Josh down and the absence of him really hurts the Mavericks. Here’s hoping he’s going to have one quick turnaround with that ankle and can be on the court again soon.
On a personal note, it’s early Wednesday morning and I’m flying home to Nova Scotia tomorrow. Mother’s Day weekend and rather than send a card I figured I’d come home for a visit. Cannot wait! So, all of you readers, do not forget: Sunday, May 10th = Mother’s Day.
Lakers/Houston, Orlando/Boston tonight. Who do you have winning?
I’m saying Lakers and I’m saying Boston. Gotta tie these things up!
Can’t wait to see more of Ron Artest. I’m just loving him in the playoffs. I’m really loving the chemistry between Yao and Aaron Brooks, too. Has anyone seen Yao laugh as hard as he did with Ron in that hilarious press conference last week? Then the press conference last night where he was all jokes with our guy, Vince Thomas, Yao’s been killing it. It’s so much fun to see him enjoying his team. So great to hear he’s healthy and his knee is good to go.
Who has been your favorite player to watch in the playoffs so far?
I’ve been enjoying Ron, but I’ve gotta go with C. Billz. Russ makes me laugh every single time he refers to Mr. Big Shot as such. It’s been great getting to watch the entire Nuggets team, but to see Chauncey shine has just been so nice.
Also, thoughts are with Leon Powe who underwent surgery on his knee yesterday. Get well soon, Mr. Powe. Keep your spirits up.