Slamadamonth, SLAM #111: LeBron James

by October 17, 2013
lebron james

lebron james

Originally published in SLAM 111

What goes up, must come down. Blood, Sweat & Tears said it once, so it must be true. Because if Canadian jazz-pop groups are wrong, then I don’t want to be right. And the Cavs, they certainly came down.

But just look at this for a second. LeBron James, suspended in time and space, in the midst of a game-ending 29-of-30 point Game 5 Eastern Conference Finals run that would effectively end the Detroit Pistons season, sending the young Cleveland Cavaliers and their 22-year-old King to the NBA Finals.

Forget what happened in the Finals for a minute; save the “Mike Brown sucks” and “LeBron needs to work on his midrange jumper” and “Larry Hughes is getting paid how much?” for later and instead just focus on the moment.

During the Finals—I believe it was the interminable Game 2—I did some research on the history of the Cleveland Cavaliers. There was the “Miracle of Richfield” in ’76, when the Cavs made it to the postseason for the first time and beat the Bullets in the first round. And of course there was “The Shot” in ’89—Michael Jordan’s non-Finals magnum opus, where he rose up over Craig Ehlo and hit the game-winner in Cleveland to send the Cavs home and the Bulls to the second round.

Recognize that “The Dunk” should share historical space with those other moments. That the Cavs first-ever appearance in the NBA Finals was a great achievement. That the King, at least for one dramatic moment, helped Cleveland rise up.

Russ Bengtson

At 0:22 in the video below…