After LeBron’s twisting lay-up rolled off the rim (like 16 of his other 18 shots), once regular commenter Rosenberg said to me “We didn’t expect to sweep them. We only need to take one in Boston.” That’s one way to look at it. If the Cavs win Game 2, Game 1 will hurt a little less. But that’s not how I can look at it. The Cavs needed, and easily could have, won this game. If the Cavs lose the series, this will be the game that haunts them.
You’re not going to have a better chance to steal a win on the road then what Cleveland had last night. “Stealing a win” is as cliché as “it is what it is” but in this case, that’s exactly what the Cavs would have done; stole a win. LeBron James was awful. Two-for-18 shooting, 10 turnovers and just 12 points. If only he could have pulled down one rebound and one more assist, he would have the rare quadruple double. He was 0-for-6 on three’s. I still don’t know why he is shooting that many three’s. Especially on a night when he can’t even make a lay-up, dribble the ball or tie his shoes.
Despite LBJ, or in spite of him, the Cavs still could have, should have won this game. You can say “look how close we played the Celtics in Boston with LeBron played so bad” but as bad as Cleveland played, Boston was just as bad. You really think Ray Allen is going to go scoreless the rest of the series? You really thing Paul Pierce is going to score just four points?
On the flip side, Kevin Garnett was amazing. He didn’t miss. He made every big shot he had to. In did was a superstar was suppose to do. Or, he did what KG usually doesn’t do. He took over. I don’t think he can play that good again. He was making bank shots that made Tim Duncan jealous.
Then there’s the alien himself, Sam Cassell. No way he makes those shots the whole series. The mother ship must have been watching this game and used some cosmic force to help Ole’ Big Nuts make a few shots. Did you see when he grabbed a loose ball in the fourth quarter, was fouled and then Z stepped over him and kneed him in the head? That must have hurt. Did you see how big his head swelled up? Ouch.
This was the Cavs chance. This was the type of game they want to play. This was the type of game they win. They win these because they have LeBron James. He makes plays down the stretch to win close games.
At the start of the fourth quarter, one of my buddies said LBJ would score 15 points and take over. Another said 14 points. It seemed logical. He’s done it all year. After three minutes, the first guy said LeBron will still take over. Same thing after six minutes. With four minutes left, he changed his attitude. It was apparent LeBron wasn’t going to take over. Even still, everyone, everywhere, even in the fake Boston Garden, thought LeBron would tie or win the game when he drove to the hoop. Instead, it was a miss and a miss opportunity for the Cavs. We didn’t expect to sweep. We wanted to win one in Boston and the Cavs can still do that. I just hope this was their only chance.