Forget coming at the King. For HE does not miss!
The day before yesterday we were about to write an article about how a superstar-less Boston beating ‘Bron may have just birth begun the next chapter of the great Celtics/Lakers rivalry in storied NBA history. One that would follow Wilt and Russell, Magic and Bird and Kobe and Kevin and center around a renewed friend or foe battle between the King and Kyrie. But then LeBron James went and scored 35 points to go with recording 15 rebounds, 9 assists and all 48 minutes and lead his Cavaliers to a 87-79 and 4-3 series win truly crowning himself as Mr. Game 7 for the ages.
As my old American friend who sends me envelopes of USA Today sports pages (thank you!) says, “I wouldn’t bet against LeBron”!
Now whether number 23 heads to Hollywood and the Lonzo Angeles Lakers for a La La LeBronland, or processes his decision and all that’s at stake in Philly this summer doesn’t matter right now. Even if it’s all we’ve been talking about all year long.
Right now its Ali/Fraizer, Cavs/Warriors IV and chance for LeBron to tie up the dynasty battle between superteam and superstar. It’s not about a Gordon Hayward and Kyrie Irving less, rookie and sophomore sensation Celtics continuing their legendary history with their hardest worked, most impressive streak (yet!). It’s not about MVP sure thing Harden showing he’s the new King James. It’s about L.B.J. showing the NBA and even M.J. that he’s the real G.O.A.T. The only one that could beat a big four of Kevin Durant, Steph Curry, Draymond Green and Klay Thompson? A true Warrior.
No Irving. No Isaiah. No Love for the make or break. No problem!
Sure the Cavs have Kevin, J.R. Smith, Jeff Green, George Hill, Rodney Hood, Kyle Korver, Tristan Thompson, Larry Nance Jr. and Jordan Clarkson. But lets face it, this Cavalier put them, the city and the whole Ohio land on his whole back and those broad shoulders. We are all witnesses to this. But how does he do it? Is it the putting down of trivial things like social media? Zero Dark Thirty. Or the books he repeatedly reads like ‘The Godfather’? An offer you couldn’t refuse. The only thing that can touch him is more ice packs than a summer in the corner store. Like Canada’s own Tristan Thompson puts it the bruising ‘Bron is a “machine” that only needs “a change of oil”. If Mike is the Babe Ruth of this sport, then the King is Ali. And even if this is the last game James wins for Cleveland and his last year as a Cavalier, they won’t be throwing rocks at the throne or burning his robes anymore, but kneeling down in front of his banner billboard in saluting respect and throwing thanks.
At a Kareem jersey age of 33, he’s chasing all sorts of history rewriting, father-time erasing records and iconic infamy like Gillette razors wish they only could him and the best a Rick Ross can get. And at the same age this writer can’t even get a text back. You’ve seen the memes and gifs. My Vine like favourite has to be the “LeBron every year in the Finals” video to the teacher chino walking into class the same way everyday, save a changing colour in shirt.
With his eight straight NBA Finals is it any wonder we wonder if postseason King LeBron James is human? The last time he didn’t make it Kobe had just won a championship, Curry was a rookie and 78% of todays players hadn’t even suited up for their first game. Not to mention only 3 of the 19 Marvel movies in the cinematic universe had been released. And if you want to keep looking at Twitter the last time LeBron didn’t make the last dance was the last time @SirDil23 couldn’t make eye contact with women. “Here’s looking at you kid”! That’s a line from an old Humphrey Bogart movie called ‘Casablanca’ from 1942. Coincidentally also the last time LeBron James didn’t make the NBA Finals.
Now that’s beyond being a superstar. That’s some superhuman, superhero stuff to marvel at. This Black Panther king is a real NBA Iron Man, Captain America hero with Hulk weight room (don’t forget the lip sync battle) smashing strength and a stormbreaking hammer of Thor dunk. Ready to snap his fingers like Thanos and you know the rest. Ashes to dust. You don’t feel so good. It’s this Avengers universe now and even if new Rookie of the Year Jayson Tatum knockout dunked hard on James…well…all that for a drop of blood. He’s ready for war with the Warriors now. And it’s going to be a gauntlet for all the stones.
You should have gone for the head. It’s the King and he’s going to sit on his throne ’till Infinity.
The Warriors Came Out To Play This Series
Even without the fantasy Basketball of Kevin Durant in this series, the Golden State Warriors still brought out the brooms like ‘Fantasia’.
And swept out of Game 4 like Thanos click finger dust, the Portland Trailblazers may have only lost by a bucket (119-117)…and in overtime at that. But with all the Splash they had to contend with this series from brothers Steph Curry and Klay Thompson, they were left dealing with more leaks and holes in all of their own ones like Mickey Mouse in said Disney epic.
This was meant to be the showdown between Dell Curry’s boys Steph and Seth which divided a household. And although the youngest gun stepped up to the plate, swung big in this carnival and knocked them down, big brother was always watching.
Steph Curry averaged over 36 points a game this series. Just read that again. 36 points. Right now we don’t need to talk about Kevin.
The Warriors are a dynasty for the ages even without their best player (although this writer thinks he wasn’t missing this entire series). The first team to make it to five straight finals since the Boston Celtics. The 1960’s Bill Russell Celtics. That’s King James crowning legendary. And Steph Curry with the shot and that facet of the game is just as iconic and dominant as a Bill block.
Give some credit to a blazing Portland side who never gave up despite the box score. They can hold their heads in the PDX. Even in their Moda Center home-stand City Of Roses end in RIP City. Their season eulogy should read as a celebration and commiseration, not a trolling condescension from critically entitled fans who have done nothing to determine the outcome of these games and could never make it this far in their wildest memes. They call themselves “influencers”? Well no one’s going to remember them in 50 years.
The NBA will remember one of their Top 100 greatest of all-time in a half century though. As after hitting the biggest buzzer beater in playoff history against Paul George and the Oklahoma City Thunder in the first round, Damian Lillard played through the pain of separated ribs this series and still made the Basketball God’s look down from the hoop heavens with praise. Like New York singer St. Vincent tweeted, “Damian Lillard is my hero”. Even his backcourt brother of splash CJ McCollum in the only small man set up to rival Curry and Klay came out to play against the Warriors after midrange mining the Nuggets into submission in Denver just over a week ago.
But Curry’s red hot triple double, starter, mains and dessert dish of 37, 13 and 11, to go along with a playing not crying, Draymond Green’s day of 18, 14 and 11 assists also was just too much in the clutch. As Stephen and Dray became the first teammates in NBA history to have a triple double in the same playoff game. Forget how much this team can unbelievably keep winning, how does this ball manage to get shared this much?
Well that just may be the secret of success?
The real test is dubbed next however in the Warriors last season in Golden State before they move across that Golden bridge to the Silicon Valley of a digital age in San Francisco. They will play the winner of the Milwaukee Bucks (probably…Giannis…MVP. Sorry Toronto but come on!) and Raptors series. But by then they should have some guy called Kevin back.
I mean come on. This has been getting crazy. This is just out of hand like said ball in Splash City.
Now Bill Russell and the Boston Celtics’ record of eight straight finals and wins doesn’t look far out of reach for Steph Curry and the player and team with the biggest range in the association over the gate of the Pacific.
Welcome to the Toronto Raptors’ Jurassic Park
“In Jurassic Park, Raptor fans wait until after dark. Even if the cold might eat them!”
Fans find a way.
An ace serve or two away from being as legendary as Wimbledon’s ‘Murray Mound’ or ‘Henman Hill’ outside the Scotiabank Arena, the Toronto Raptors Maple Leaf Square’s “Jurassic Park” may just be the ticket for this sold out crowd.
Raptor Klaw, Kawhi Leonard ruled the earth last night. He and the T-Dot at the final tick beat the Sixers in The Six, as his shot bobbled like a beach ball on the surface of a swimming pool before making the biggest splash of these postseason playoffs. Taking longer to fall than Leonardo DiCaprio’s spinning top in ‘Inception’. But this was no dream.
And if you thought the Scotiabank Arena in downtown Toronto erupted last night, then outside in Maple Leaf Square it was like the volcanoes that killed the dinosaurs after that big ball dropped. An Armageddon even Bruce Willis couldn’t save like he wish he could his career.
Welcome to Jurassic World.
With all due respect to the Linsanity of Jeremy Lin, or pick your poison whoever is your flash card pick of the bench mob pack, but the Jurassic Park crowd fenced in outside of Scotia is the
Forget rain or shine. You see the slickers. These faithful fans will pitch a spot waiting for game time like the ball to drop in Times Square for New Year in New York, sleeping bag lining up all day in their hordes huddled for warmth. These beautiful fans will brave the harshest, most frigid temperatures to be the coldest fans in the game in more ways than one. Part of the ‘We The North’ community in the 6 that the Basketball God’s look down on with pride, whilst other armchair fans watch this game for the throne from home. Or leave early like those suit and tie corporate seats trying to catch that last red eye Matt Bonner home.
Can you imagine of they called game early before Kawhi last night?
I could imagine Drake taking in the CN Tower looking up views of the Jurassic
Well those in the park for recreation stayed until the beautiful end to a game Butler almost delivered bitter. And you could could phantom cam see every emotion in slow motion last night as Leonard’s buzzer beating ball toyed with the rim like three dots on messenger, or Damien Lillard even further downtown in Oklahoma City.
This is the spirit of the stadium and the soul of the squad, expanding the capacity arena and the Canadian ballclubs worldwide fanbase watching on their own Jumbotrons.
And the Toronto Raptors are going to need all the north they can get if they’re going to stop the Bucks in Milwaukee.
But this club has the claws to do it. And if you don’t think they can win in Wisconsin on their own road to being the first franchise outside of the United States to be NBA finalists and who knows what next against the Warriors(?), then just watch this Canadian cornerstone from the Jurassic era.
Extinct in six? Nah! Get ready to hear the North roar.