Greatness (noun)- the quality of being great.
As sports fans, we have witnessed a ton of greatness over the last couple of decades. We’ve seen countless records change hands and at times change hands again. We’ve seen dynasties in multiple leagues and we’ve seen legends rise and fall.
Yet it seems that most only want to focus on the falls.
Folks run to Twitter and Facebook at the first sign of a great athletes demise, or worse, to obsessively tear down the greatness that we’re all witnessing.
I’m sure I’ll be told, “it’s always been this way,” but I don’t accept that. Not as being true, or as being acceptable.
Call me crazy, but I like to enjoy sports. I’d rather be happy after experiencing historic events and blatant examples of greatness. Especially when I have no actual loyalties involved.
When it comes to the now all-but-over NBA Finals, that’s exactly what I’m doing and you should too.
I have no loyalty to the Warriors or the Cavs.
I am a fan of LeBron James (admittedly) and would have loved to see him shut up the naysayers once again, but honestly I don’t care who wins. James really doesn’t have to do anything to retain my admiration, but he is.
Even in defeat, the greatness of LeBron James has been on display for the last three games and that tells you just how great this Warriors team is.
I feel pretty confident in my opinion that LeBron James has nothing to do with the fact that the Cavs are about to get swept. The reason?
The Bayless’s of the world are going to spend today and (likely) Saturday breaking down why James is to blame for the Cavs being down 0-3. This, to me, is a double dose of tearing down greatness.
Not only are Bayless and all who agree with him going way out of their way to tear down how amazing James is, but they’re also basically telling you that the greatness of the 2017 Golden State Warriors isn’t all that great.
After all, it’s LeBron that choked and blew it to these types, not that Kevin Durant, Steph Curry and the gang have simply dominated a champion.
This Warriors squad has dominated all offseason, but what they’re doing to the Cavaliers is something completely different and far greater.
They’ve taken the defending champs, a “big 3” and solid supporting cast, and rendered them every bit as ineffective as the team that James had in 2007.
Now don’t take that as me saying that this Cavs team is as bad as the 2007 team was…that’s not at all the case, nor what I’m saying. This Cleveland team is stellar. 12-1 in the Eastern Conference Playoffs stellar.
Yet for 3-games now, they’ve been abysmal overall.
Even when they finally looked like they came to play, they were lulled into a false sense of confidence and then had their hearts ripped out by KD. The most telling stat of Game 3, to me, is proof that you cannot logically blame James for this. In his 46-minutes on the floor the Cavs were plus-7, in the 2-minutes he sat…minus-12.
James and Irving were nearly unstoppable last night and the Warriors still secured the road victory and put a stranglehold on the series. What’s even more impressive is that they did it so nonchalantly. Like they were never worried at all.
KD has without a doubt been the biggest difference maker this year, but he is only a fraction of the greatness that we are witnessing.
Team sports require a team.
Sometimes we see individuals elevate a team to another level, but most of the time it’s the more complete team that gets the job done.
The Warriors were a complete team already. Then they added another former league MVP to the mix and became one of the most complete and most talented teams in NBA history.
If you open the scope a little and see the entire spectrum of greatness that we are witnessing, you’ll realize that what we’re seeing from James and last night from Irving go hand-in-hand with what we are seeing from the Warriors…
Embrace it. All of it.
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