Name That Straggling Polymer
I may have to back up off of this "worst line-up in the league" thing. For one, it only really makes sense when you factor in how much the Cavs are paying their others. And tonight, they were actually pretty good. It looked like the Pistons repeatedly had bad luck on the boards, and missed all the shots they generally make. But after about three quarters of this, I was forced to give in: indeed, the Cavs were apparently thwarting the Detroit offense, and repeatedly coming up with the rebounds (more so on defense).
The Gibson thing? Well, there's that open jump shot-maker Bron has desperately needed. The rest of the team shoots like they're seeing a different basket, and their free throw woes border on exotic. But they did make the Finals, and beat a contender along the way. At some point, all my analysis has to defer to basic truths.
James didn't replicate Thursday, but that's what makes him LeBron James. He played a part in nearly every bit of offensive production, looking every bit the triple-double machine one game after unleashing the scoring beast within. In a way, this performance makes him even scarier. On his off nights, all he does is animate his teammates and push them to the victory. Or can we even call it an off night, seeing as his unselfishness and all-around sound play more than made up for a lack of buckets? This is that other side of the prism, and who knows how many more faces he has yet to reveal?
Closing with a thought on LeBron's style: he really is the most football NBA star in existence, and that's coming from someone who has sworn off the NFL. We talk a lot about Baron Davis barreling into the lane like a running back, but that's mostly just a dandy hyperbole. Davis is still playing basketball. LeBron, on the other hand, really could insert himself into a football game and not change his movements one bit.
Watching him push the ball the length of the court, taking out two defenders on the finish, isn't intricate or cagey. I'm sure someone's said this before, but it's the most apt way of putting it: force of nature in the Jim Brown tradition. You'd never call James a power player, exactly because his mix of speed, size and strength is impossible to prioritize. So it was with Brown.
I bet you all I own that he would out-Calvin Johnson Calvin Johnson if they let him do the combine for fun.