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Believe me I'm quite comfortable in my basketball knowledge. I'm talking about stuff you can't compile and rank in an excel spreadsheet.
This post was edited by CFAbuckeye 18 months ago
He didn't really want to go to LA. Brooklyn is where he wants to go. He wanted to get out of Orlando more than not wanted to be in LA. He figured at least in LA he would make a run at the championship. ROFL
This is a dumb question, I'm sorry but it just is. Its not even close
Fair challenge. Thank you. I'm using Siri, so excuse the typos.
Immediately after watching the series, or any single quarter of a game in this series, the only thing I knew for sure is that he played an entirely different "game" than I had ever seen him play before, and that he did things in this series that are otherwise unexplainable.
Find me the recordings and,I will convince you. (I will compensate anyone who can email me recordings.) If you're a rational and objective man, I will change your mind. I erased the DVRs a week after the series. I so wish I hadn't.
I said in previous posts that I've only been referring to the tip of the iceberg. Here's another anecdote that I find unbelievably telling. Help me understand it .... Preface: Lbj, imo, is the best fastbreaker to ever play the game based on combined skills as both a scorer and facilitator. He's so good that he has "numbers" if he's running it by himself against 2 defenders. With this in mind, getting to the anecdote, during any typical game as a Cavalier, he would take the outlet pass no less than, what, 9 or 10 times and push the break.
Well, for this series, I REMEMBER THE MAN LEADING ONE - 1 - UNO - fastbreaks FOR THE ENTIRE SERIES, AS IN THE ENTIRE SIX-GAME SPAN - Not just for 1 quarter, not just for 1 game, but for the entire series. And I think I'm being generous. I think it happened in either game five or six when he pushed the ball to half-court only to put on the brakes.
Could I have missed one or two or four or six? Maybe one, or possibly two. But not 4 or 10 and certainly not the 25 or more fastbreaks or pushes he would have normally attempted.
And just when you think it can't get stranger, read on .... Not only wasn't he pushing the ball up court after defensive boards BUT HE WASN'T EVEN LOOKING FOR THE OUTLET PASS!!! I'll never forget the dumbfounded expressions on Z'a and V's faces when they turned to look for him off of defensive rebounds Where was he? Oh, he's strolling up court with his back to the ball. Never ever did he do this before this series. It was very unusual for LeBron James to not flat out demand the outlet pass in any meaningful situation during his days as a cavalier. It was assumed.
Nevertheless, in this series, he was entirely disinterested in starting a fastbreak.
. Do you remember Mo Williams' incredible performance in game 2? 20+ and his first dunk. Mo Williams had a great game because he became the outlet pass for the fast break. He took the reigns and spilled his blood guts on the court that day.
So, by the way, was is it any mystery that this team went from riches to rags when the league's most talented quarterback on a 5 man unit decided to no longer play his normal game? Is it any mystery that this finely tuned engine that won all these games over 2 seasons - many more, on average per season, than Miami has won during the 2.5 regular seasons since lbj went south. - all of a sudden looked like a five-man unit that couldn't do anything right? What would the Lakers of the 1980s have looked like if Magic Johnson had decided to no longer look for outlet passes or push the pace?
In a matter of six short games, lbj made the entire basketball world forget about the roughly 200 games that had preceded this series. This team went from being regarded as so good that they had an almost equal pay off of winning it all with eight teams remaining to instead being one that "didn't have the talent to win a championship" - to one that didn't even have talent. This says a lot about what LeBron James did in this series and it also says a lot about the power of the press and/or the gullibility or ignorance of its audience.
Before this series, someone would've thought you were a fool to think that the cavs didn't have the best shot of winning the championship. Some people still thought the Lakers had a better chance despite the fact that the cavs had swept them during the regular season but the fact is, the odds in Vegas where the smart money is laid, it was made clear where the money was being laid. And then - PUFF - six games later, and now, a few years later, the 200 games of dominance that preceded this series was all forgotten. Mr, Consensus is of the opinion that this team didn't even come close to having the talent that is required to win championships for LeBron James.
Back to the anecdote - Fatigue or personal issues? Really? I just can't imagine that such things could explain what he did. It's possible, I suppose, but if I had to bet my life on whether or not he tanked this series, I say he did, without hesitation. Lbj knew before this series started that this was his last series as a cavalier.
... Switching gears just a bit - I think LeBron James, deep down, has an enormous heart. I've listened to his interviews from ages 18 through 24, and it's clear to me that this is true. And I think his dispassionate and despondent facial expressions throughout this series, in which his intensity levels should have only been elevated, is entirely because he knew exactly what he was doing. Quite simply, I think I think the man simply felt guilty.
Another anecdote that I could show anyone who has tape of game six. With roughly 5 minutes to go and the cavs down roughly 14 points, LeBron James hit his first 2 3-point attempts of the game, and both of them were off the dribble - in other words, they were three point attempts that he could've gotten whenever he wanted to take them.
Boston called a timeout and the camera was focusing in on LeBron as he was heading to the bench right before the commercial break. No chest thumping. Zero intensity. What I saw in his expression was pretty much what I noticed for most of the series. I went back to look at it in slow-motion on my DVR. I just couldn't figure out how a man who had just canned 2 3-point attempts in such a big game to cut the lead in half could have such a drab look on his face. I just wanted to make sure or confirm that my eyes weren't deceiving me.
If I could paste his expression on this post without prefacing to you when or where he was when this photo was taken, you would've thought he was either headed to bed or about to cry or some combination of both.
The other reason, the bigger reason, why I replayed in slow-motion this moment was to take a closer look at his face because I wondered if his shoulder was bothering him.
I would looking for any grimace at all.
But there was no look of physical pain whatsoever. Not to mention, if the man's shoulder was truly still hurting, how do you explain the fact that he just canned 2 3-point attempts off the dribble? You can't. You just don't make 2 straight shots from that distance with a round ball that big through a rim that small if your shoulder is hurting.
So what did he do on the court after the time our? Answer, he did nothing. He took a nap. Series over. No going back to Cleveland for game 7 go tank it in front of the home fans. No way.
I have seen so very little of this man since he made this huge mistake, but I did see roughly 10 seconds of highlights from his game against Boston last weekend. For me, it was sickening to see how jacked up he was for this regular-season game after what I saw of him in his last six games as a cav.
For what little it's worth, It is no mystery to anyone that he works hard but I disagree a bit with, "Nobody gets to be as good as Lebron without being the hardest worker". LeBron James is so athletically gifted and has such terrific court vision and awareness that he really doesn't have to be the hardest worker in order to be considered the best player. He is arguably the most athletic man on the planet. Even if he didn't work the hardest, he would be hands down the best player in the game based on how he played most of the time as a cav.
You say, "Nobody who works that hard to achieve greatness tanks a playoff series." My response is that no one who works hard, nor doesn't work hard would, would we ever expect to tank series, but he did. This is what makes it so amazing.
This post has been edited 3 times, most recently by dave f 18 months ago
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