If you are a basketball fan, you cannot fail to appreciate the significance of this Sunday's NBA finals between the Golden State Warriors and the Cleveland Cavaliers.
“Dey give him the crown but I have the throne.” At the end of last year’s NBA final, I used that line from a classic Sparrow calypso named ROBBERY WITH V, to draw attention to what I and many others considered unfair.
If the MVP must go to the most impactful player on the championship team, then I suppose it was fair that Andre Iguodala did deserve the title. But who was the more impactful and deserving player overall, than LeBron James? He virtually led a shell of his Cleveland Cavaliers team to an almost upset of the Golden State Warriors. LeBron did what we knew he could do, but doing so all by himself without the support of Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love, both sidelined from injury, made that solo feat even more incredible.
So the Cavaliers lost and the Warriors were crowned champions, but we knew very well who occupied the throne.
This Sunday night on ABC we will find out if the crown and the throne will both be at one place.
This year’s record-setting Warriors broke the Michael Jordan Bulls record of 72 regular season victories. So despite the strange position in which they found themselves, some still expected them to extricate themselves from the 3-1 deficit to win the Western Conference 4-3 over the Thunder. They were that good and quite rightfully we stood in awe as they came back to emerge victoriously in grand style.
In a strange twist of fate, the Warriors placed the Cavaliers in the exact position as they themselves were placed in by the Thunder. The Warriors defeated the Cavs on the Cavs own court 108-97 to take a commanding lead 3-1. So all they needed was to win only one more of the remaining 3, to clinch a repeat title. No team in a similar position had ever emerged victorious. To make things even more dire, the first of the three was to be played in Oracle arena, the home court of Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, the deadly and amazingly accurate combo 3-point shooters.
That was the setting when the king with the help of Kyrie Irving rose up to say “not so fast.” LeBron proved once again to the basketball world that he really is no ordinary player and that the throne belonged to no one else but him. After all he was dubbed “King James!” Before the eyes of basketball lovers, King James and his sidekick, Kyrie Irving put on a show that will live in the annals of basketball history. They each scored 41 points right there on the court of a hostile territory in Oracle arena. The Warriors saw their first hope of victory eliminated as James and company soundly defeated them 112-97.
Humiliated, the Warriors took solace in the fact that there were still 2 more games to play. The series moved back to Quicken Loans arena where Curry and his Warriors felt they had to redeem themselves on the Cavs court like they did in last year’s final. The king knew he could not be humiliated on his court once again. So he arose again. LeBron scored another 41 points with 23 from Kyrie to defeat the Warriors 115-101 and tied the series 3-3.
Tune in to Sunday’s game on ABC to see if the king will reclaim his crown and place it firmly beside him on his throne, or whether another Golden State Warrior will walk off with it. Whoever wins this championship will be placing themselves squarely alongside the legends of the game.