When I saw LeBron James take off his dishtowel, or whatever type of headband he had on, I knew that we all had crossed a threshold. As this article so eloquently put it, it’s all about basketball now. No more ringless King comments, the clutch gene has been removed from our sports biology books. Even hairline jokes now become a little hollow. All of commentary about LeBron that had now become noise during a playoff run where he averaged 30.3 pts, 9.7 reb, and 5.6 ast, could now be sopped up by that headband, tossed aside, and be replaced with the 2012 NBA Crown. Even as a LeBron hater, especially last year, I found myself wishing he could just win the title (or at least hit a game winning shot) just to end the boring insults that James constantly gets despite superhuman performances night in and night out. For LeBron, you can see that what people say won’t matter too much anymore; you have receding hairline, so what? You are the greatest basketball player on the planet and now an NBA champion.
It’s back to basketball now. We can talk about Miami’s great defense against an offensive juggernaut in the Thunder. We can talk about how reports of Dwyane Wade’s demise were greatly exaggerated. We can talk about the Thunder showing their youth in this entire series, looking a lot like what the Heat did last year against the Mavericks. We can talk about the defiant stare Kevin Durant gave the camera after he wept on his mother’s shoulder. We can talk about Russell Westbrook, and how he is the Fire to Durant’s Ice, a man who when the chips are down, will still compete with a will to win like none other.
Let’s talk about Pat Riley (“the greatest leader of Black Men” – Chris Rock) and his vision for this day 2 years ago. How he trusted Erik Spoelstra and the Heat even though everyone else said that Spoelstra would be gone and the team broken up while they were still playing playoff games! Let’s talk about the role players who finally came through, making Game 5 look like a cakewalk. Mike Miller has been saving those shots since he was a Wizard!
Finally, we can talk about LeBron James. Not about sports psychologists or his mom or whatever else used to be cool to talk about. Let’s talk about how he may have been the most underappreciated athlete of all time, in an era when we have the most access to athletes. But for the majority of us now, that changes. Because everything else doesn’t matter anymore. It’s just basketball from here on out; and it’s about damn time.
Actually, I have to say one thing. Chris Bosh what are you doing here? What a minute, you know what? You just won the NBA Title. Just be yourself and don’t let anybody tell you otherwise lol.