Tonight can only go one of two ways for the Cleveland Cavaliers in their quest to pull an '04 Red Sox on the San Antonio Spurs in tonight's edition of the NBA Finals. The first is, judging by the first three games of the series, a bit out of the realm of the possibility. A win tonight propels the Cavs into a fifth game where anything could happen. And there is some good reasoning behind this.
As you read here on TSE, King James just had another Prince (that was TERRIBLE). Now, I've never had any children (that I know of...COUNT IT) but I'm guessing one of the reasons that LeBron has been playing so tentatively in this series has a lot to do with the fact that his girlfriend was about to give birth. You know, that and Bruce Bowen. But having this seemingly incredible burden off of his shoulders can only stand to help the Cavs. With any luck, the birth of the child might just be the shot in the arm the Cavs so desperately need.
Throughout this utterly boring series, we've seen absolutely nothing but stoic, and desperately sober action from both sides. There has been no flash, no glitz, no excitement. Part of this is due to the fact that the Spurs won the first two games in the first half. But even game 3 in Cleveland lacked any excitement on the court. Actually, that's one of the reasons I was rooting for, deep in the sub-cockles of my mind, the Pistons to make it to the Finals. All we would have seen was outlandish, NBA Jam TE-inspired passing and NBA Street-style double-dunks and taunts...and all by Rasheed Wallace. But we've had none of that.
Tonight, however, we may be in for a treat. All of the sudden, LeBron has the chip off his shoulder and might actually be able to get emotionally into the game tonight, which might just light the fire under the rest of the Cavs. The Cavs demolish the Spurs tonight and in game 5 and, all of the sudden (because the 2-3-2 format is bullshit) the Spurs need to win at home one-out-of-two. Because who knows what happens in a game 7????
Not likely, and hardly even worth thinking about yet, but I'm putting it out there. The second option, of course, is rather academic: Spurs do what they've been doing and put the Cavs away good and early. I almost think that would be better for the NBA and for the viewing public for this thing to just up and die and give way to the draft (man, do I hate those) and a new season.
I would love to see LeBron play with complete reckless abandon, but after the last game and the ultimate non-call, all LeBron did was ask, politely it seemed, if it was a foul or not. Ref says no, LeBron heads to showers. Very professional and maybe a forecaster of things to happen tonight.
Spurs - 89
Cavs - 85
James goes for 32 pts - 11 rebs - 6 asst but it isn't enough. The Spurs are today's dynasty and that's the unfortunate truth for fans of any other team in the NBA.
But, like Tits McLefty 8 years ago at Pinehurst, LeBron's going to be a Dad. Some things, I guess, are more important than an ugly trophy, a ring and a championship.