LeBron James has been the greatest player on the planet for quite some time now. Everybody knows the time will come when he can no longer single-handedly lift 14 players, a coaching staff, and a city onto his shoulders and bring home a championship. This may be his last hurrah.
In addition, a Championship to Cleveland has one major effect — it makes LeBron exiting Cleveland all the more difficult. I may be wrong, but other than a marquee player retiring after winning an NBA Championship (a la David Robinson), I cannot think of a single superstar who has left his team after winning a title to start fresh the following season elsewhere.
Sure, lots of role players and bench guys will be pilfered after the rings have been handed out, but to watch the Finals MVP (and we all know if the Cavs win the Finals who that MVP will be) pack up and head out . . . no way.
A Cavs championship blocks the first domino in what could be a summer free agency trade war from falling. If LeBron wins, he stays. If he loses and decides to leave, then teams start dumping high salaried players in hopes of nailing down James. Players get traded, teams get dismantled, coaching staffs get dumped all in hopes of capturing the goose that lays the golden eggs.
It sends a ripple through the NBA the likes of which have massive consequences for like 27 teams.
THE VERY FABRIC OF THE SPORT OF BASKETBALL FACES UNPRECEDENTED PERIL!
James knows how to beat the Warriors. And that’s what they need, a good beating. It’s an even numbered year, so it looks about right for the timing.
Alas, LeBron James staying in place offers the entire league a do-over for the 2018-19 season. We can see what the outcome of this season would be if guys like Gordon Hayward, Paul Milsap, and Kawhi Leonard had all been healthy. What would the fate of the Western Conference have been if Boogie Cousins, Mike Conley, and Danilo Gallinari had full, healthy seasons.
Where might Isaiah Thomas be right now?
I say GO CAVS! Win another title. Make LeBron cry that Miss America pageant way that only LeBron can:
I want to see Tyronn Lue, alone, sobbing on the bench just one last time:
And then we can start 2018-19 fresh. A 100% Kawhi in a Spurs jersey and show the world how this season truly should have looked.
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