The 2014-2015 Cavs came into the play offs with the underdog label, as key players were out injured. When they lost the NBA Finals 4-2 after taking a 2-1 lead, the world pitied them. The “better” 2015-2016 team are on the verge of being beaten in Five Games. Why is that?
It’s not Kyrie Irving’s fault: The 5th year guard out of Duke was absent from all but half of one game in the Finals last season, and he has been outstanding this year. He has showed up and taken the burden off LeBron James when called upon and would be in the conversation for MVP of the Finals if the Cavaliers were winning. Unfortunately, he’s heading for heartbreak.
LeBron? The argument will rage for years whether LeBron James played up to his true potential, and the convo will get real ugly should he take another “decision” at the end of the Series. LeBron was massive for Cavaliers last season, until he got tired. He’s played like a superstar in these Series, but has he played at elite level? Would Michael Jordan or Kobe Bryant have gotten more out of this 2016 Cavaliers? The discussion will open after the Finals.
Channing Frye and Cavaliers bench: A-ha! The members of the sitting Cavs fraternity, led by ‘the shooting messiah’ Channing Frye, must take a huge chunk of the blame for the implosion we are witnessing. They have failed to deliver when called upon, leaving the Starting Five cruelly exposed to playing murderous minutes in a gruelling Series. Frye was handed a massive contract to help spread the floor with his shooting, so far he hasn’t delivered.
The Weakness of the East may be a major factor. The Cavaliers strolled through the Eastern Conference; they didn’t drop a game until they met Raptors in the Conference Finals, and never dropped a game at home until now. That stroll gave the Cavs and their fans a false sense of “keeping a date with history”. They did, but it is the Warriors winning a historic 88th game in a season on their floor!
Blame the Dubs: The Warriors are definitely better than they were last season, and would probably still have won the Championship in 7 Games if the Cavaliers played well!
Picture Courtesy Sportsunbiased.com