No matter what side you are on, whether you love LeBron James, hate LeBron James, are indifferent or just love the drama and sideshow that comes with the territory, each and everyone of you are all witness right now to one of the more amazing individual playoff runs in recent memory.
No, I am not having a kneejerk reaction to last night’s performance nor am I defending one of my favorite players who happens to play on my favorite team.
What LeBron James has done from the end of April up to this point has been nothing short of legen……..WAIT FOR IT……..dary.
Ok I really didn’t need to go Barney Stinson from ‘How I Met Your Mother’ on here but lets get one thing straight right now, LeBron James is the undisputed best player in the league. I mean think about this….there have been 3 instances in this year’s playoffs where the Miami Heat have trailed in a series at some point. And how has the King responded……..
Game 4 vs. Indiana Pacers: With the Miami Heat down 2-1 and sinking faster than the titanic, LeBron James responds with a stat line of 40 pts, 18 rebs and 9 assist and revigorating a previously struggling Dwayne Wade to close out the Pacers in the 2nd half which tilted the series and ultimately became Indiana’s undoing.
Game 6 vs. Boston Celtics: With the Heat down 3-2 and facing elimination and possible nationwide dissection, redicule and speculation, LeBron single handily saved this team with a 45 point 15 rebs and 5 assist performance that some people would say was beyond Jordanesque.
And of course last night Game 2 vs. Oklahoma City Thunder with the Miami Heat backs against the wall and facing a 2-0 deficit going back to Miami, LeBron while getting help from his co-stars Dwayne Wade and a healthier Chris Bosh contributed 32 points and scored 6 late points to seal a key win and withstand a late OKC charge.
What are we to make of all this?
My theory is that LeBron James has grown up before our very eyes. With The NBA Finals officially a best of 5 and alot of basketball to be played, I don’t want to start shooting out predictions nor bring out the cocky Heat fan in me. But beyond all the Heat fandom and everything what we are witnessing is a player doing something that should be appreciated beyond comprehension.
In the 23 years of watching NBA basketball I have never seen a superstar have to carry as much responsibility on both sides of the ball like LeBron James has been asked to do his entire 9 year career. Is it an excuse? Of course not. He has a job to do. But it’s just ashame people will continue the same narrative with LeBron James and will not tilt their opinions on him until he collects 3 more wins this series.
Then again, who’s to say the critics won’t still be in droves after he’s finally won a title.