Wednesday, May 12, 2010

The Implications of Game 6 Between the Cavaliers and Celtics

At only 25 years old LeBron James is already at a critical point in his career. After the embarrassing 120-88 loss in Cleveland to the Boston Celtics the fate of LeBron's career remains at center stage. Like never before King James will be bearing the pressure. This is more than a playoff game, this is the fate of a franchise, the league and more importantly a tell-tale sign of LeBron James and who he is as a basketball player.

On one end is the city of Cleveland ready to experience the worst yet again. The last time the city of Cleveland won a sports title was in 1964 and with recent luck that does not seem to be changing. On the other end are the potential suitors for LeBron James. Does LeBron James return to Cleveland after yet another humiliating finish to the season? After seven years why should LeBron think things will ever change?

And finally there is LeBron. All the scoring titles, all the MVPs and all the amazing games LeBron James has played in his career hold little value to the importance of Game 6. This is what LeBron James was brought into the league to do.

First he was the young junior in high school who grazed the cover of Sports Illustrated. Next he was the young rookie in 2003 making a name for himself in Cleveland. Now he is the superstar who, on his best team in his career, is one loss away from elimination.

This was the season for the Cavs. The season it all came together. Not like the past ones, no this season was going to end with LeBron at the top. The Cavaliers had the best regular season records so there was reason to believe this would happen.

For the past 24 hours every media outlet has chastised (rightfully so) the performance of LeBron James and the Cavaliers in Game 5. His work ethic, his style of play and his dedication have all been scrutinized.

It's gut check time for LeBron. Now more than ever his back is against the wall. To his fans and his critics Game 6 is a testament to the player he really is. The voices of being overrated will only get louder if LeBron puts up another lackluster effort.

But if he regains his form and shows his ability on national television in the biggest game of the 2010 NBA playoffs so far than we all will believe again.

On Thursday night we will all be witnesses.

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