… Was more impressive and noteworthy than watching him put up 61 points on a Monday night in the NBA’s regular season against the Charlotte Bobcats, going 8 for 10 from 3-point land.
As a Celtics fan, I respect the hell out of LeBron James for that, but that performance really gutted me.
Remember it? The Celtics were up 3-2 in the series with a win away from punching a ticket to the NBA Finals which would have been their third trip in five years (2008, 2010 and 2012).
I’ll never forget that game for as long as I live. I don’t forget much anyhow, but some things stick with you more vividly and even immersively in your mind, when you think about them. In that game, LeBron put up 45 points, brought down 15 boards and dished out 5 assists. Again, remember, the Heat’s backs were against the wall and were on the brink of elimination. I was ready to celebrate. And then LeBron took over and exemplified why he’s the best in the world.
I’ll never get over that, just like how I’ll never get over many things, much like how that NBA Finals/game six from last year still bothers me with Ray Allen saving the Heat from being the Spurs’ fifth NBA Finals victim since 1999.
Who gives a damn if LeBron does it in the regular season against a subpar Bobcats team? (Yeah, I know the 27-31 Bobcats or whatever they are, are going to make the playoffs in all likelihood in an awful Eastern conference.) I wouldn’t even put that in the top 10 games of LeBron James’ all-time career. I don’t want LeBron shooting a horde of 3s if I’m Erik Spoelstra — he’s more like Magic Johnson than he is like Michael Jordan. Turn those five assists into nine! LeBron never has been a great shooter, but he caught himself on a hot streak, and that was that. I just hope he doesn’t start chucking basketballs up all the time rather than playing like a smooth, finely tuned and refined freight train pacing to the basket and dishing it out.
By the way, just imagine if Kevin Durant wins the MVP, which I think he will. I can’t imagine the fire that will set off in LeBron. There’s nothing more fun and compelling to watch in the NBA than a pissed off LeBron James.
Remember when Derrick Rose won the MVP in 2011, and when the Bulls and Heat matched up in the Eastern Conference Finals, LeBron was pissed off enough to say to his teammates, “Hey, let me guard D-Rose!” and he did, and Rose only shot 8% from the field in the fourth quarters of that series — his (Rose’s) damn Allen Iverson-esque game became truly anemic as the Heat won that series in five.
By the way, TSTOS is officially 7 years old. Hard to believe it’s been that long since I started this thing up.