After a hard-fought and grueling 7 game series, the Cleveland Cavaliers finally brought greatness back to a place that had all but forgotten what winning felt like. Led by the boy from Akron, the Cavaliers made history today by becoming the first team in NBA history to come back from a 3-1 deficit.
Though he has won rings with fellow stars Chris Bosh and Dwayne Wade (present in the stands last night) in Miami, this particular win no doubt was close to “The King’s” heart. After a four-year stint with the Heat, LeBron returned to his hometown in search of the ring to end the town’s championship draught. Last night all of the hard work he put in was validated as the Cavaliers completed the upset to defeat the Golden State Warriors 4-3 in a series that honestly should have been put to rest several games ago.
Sunday night fellow teammate Kyrie Irving called LeBron “the best player on the planet”, saying that the title they earned was rightfully deserved. However, analysts and fans alike agreed that in order for Cleveland to win the title, all of the players would need to show up. After clutches performances from Kyrie, Kevin Love, and Iman Shumpert among others, the Cavaliers won the hearts of the NBA community. After the game, veteran player, Richard Jefferson immediately retired.
On the other hand, the Golden State Warriors played their absolute best last night, the polar opposite of how they played the previous three games and still unable to edge out their opponents. Draymond Green showed up in a big way for his team, hitting a barrage of threes, he inspired amazing performances from Curry, Klay, and big man Festus Ezeli. After the game Coach Steve Kerr was quoted as saying the loss “left the team stunned.” Regular season MVP, Stephen Curry said that this loss “will haunt me for a long time.”
The continuous losses came as a major shock for the team that one upped the famed Bulls team of the Jordan era. Amounting to a staggering 73 wins, the Warriors were fully expected to oust the Cavs. Instead, the losses and off court drama surrounding Ayesha Curry dominated much of the media’s attention. Fans will wonder if LeBron truly deserved the MVP award since it was actually Kyrie that exploded in the later part of the series. Last year Andre Iguodala earned himself the finals MVP honors due to his clutch play in the finals. He was given the award despite averaging under 18 points. So this year could a case be made for Kyrie? The answer, most fans would say is no. Though he played a pivotal role in a few games during the series, most notably his 40-point outburst the previous game, and clutch three pointer last night, the team was still down 1-3. If Kyrie had played at the level expected of him the entire series, then perhaps he would have been a viable candidate to win the Finals MVP award.
All we understand is that the NBA Finals are over and that amidst the sorrowful GSW fans, a king finally made good to his homeland. Cleveland, which had not won a major sports event since 1964, became the NBA Champions.