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tBBC From the Ohio Fanbase: Thanks to the Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron James

Michael Smith

From the Ohio Fanbase: Thanks to the Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron James
Michael Smith
via our good friends at Buckeye Battle Cry
Visit their fantastic blog and read the full article (and so much more) here


A couple weeks ago before the NBA Finals started, I wrote an article about the struggles of Cleveland sports and gave my prediction for the NBA Finals. I will fully admit that I predicted the Warriors would win in five games. For a while it looked like my prediction would be spot on.

However, a funny thing happened on the way to another championship for Cleveland lost.

Let me first tell you that I am a huge Cleveland sports fan. I’m just as big a Cleveland sports fan as I am an Ohio State fan. In fact, I’ve been a Cleveland sports fan longer. I have ticket stubs to all 3 Cleveland Sports teams (Cavs, Indians, and Browns) as far back as the mid 80s. I will turn 38 years old this year. I’ve lived and seen it all when it comes to Cleveland sports team.

What I haven’t seen, until this past Sunday night, is a Cleveland team win a championship.

My family is in the process of moving and I just found this today in a box of old stuff. I caught this during a Cavs game back in 1991.

Due to all the heartbreaks and all the ways Cleveland teams seem to lose games, especially championship games, made me very pessimistic over the last few years. I figured this NBA Finals would be the same.

Fellow fans that follow me on twitter (@CWGBuckeyes35) always ask me why I’m always so negative. I always ask why they can always be so positive and full of hope. Cleveland will lose, we’ve seen the movie before. Why get your hopes up when every time they will be dashed like before?

The thing is, I’m always with them.

Yes I will be pessimistic and say pessimistic things, but deep down I do hope and I do believe. I root for all the Cleveland teams, just like I do for Ohio State. I just hate the heartbreak and the feeling of loss when things go wrong.

After the Golden State Warriors went up three games to one in the NBA Finals, I thought, here we go again. Another wasted chance to end the misery of 52 years for me and fellow Cleveland fans. I even started to tell people, “I told you so, Warriors in five, don’t get your hopes up!”

Deep down however, I was feeling dread and heartbreak again.

Just one championship. It is all I was asking for.

I didn’t watch or DVR Game Five. Why would I? I don’t want to see Golden State and their fans celebrating another championship and rubbing our nose in it.

It was my father and wife who had to tell me the Cavs were not only winning, but up big. LeBron James and Kyrie Irving went off for 41 points each in an all-time performance. It was then, after they won game five that I started to think, “hey, maybe, just maybe.”

The Cavs won game five, but if they lost Game six at home, it would be Golden State celebrating again on our home court. In front of us. In our arena. Again, rubbing our nose in it.

Instead, LeBron James refused to let Cleveland lose and put up another 41 points.

Game six also showed the country what I’ve always thought of the Warriors and especially their star Stephen Curry. Now, Curry is a great player, no doubt.

He can make shots most humans can only dream of. His range exceeds the parking lot, if you know what I mean.

However, I have always thought of him as an arrogant and entitled player who, if things finally didn’t go his way, would throw a temper tantrum.

That’s exactly what happened.

Fast forward to game seven in Oakland. The Golden State Warriors had lost just 2 games all regular season at Oracle Arena.

What chances did Cleveland have?

No NBA team had ever come back from 3-1 deficit to win the title.

The sports gods already allowing the countless championship losses in Cleveland history — with the Cavs facing a team that won 73 games — the most in NBA history.

Before the game started I actually tweeted out a prayer. I told God I was sorry for my sins, I apologized for all the wrong doings in my life, and that I just wanted one championship.

Now for those who don’t know me well, I’m not a religious person. In fact, I would even call myself a boarder line atheist.

But I wanted all the help Cleveland could get.

My plans to watch the final game of the NBA season turned into a full breakdown.

I turned the game off.

My father, another life long Cleveland sports fan, that allows nothing to bother him — he’s a man of steel. He couldn’t watch, because he feared the end result.

He turned the game off, with the fear of losing forcing him to lock himself in his bedroom.

I sat on my computer, watching the WWE, trying to keep my mind off the game.

It was impossible.

My wife was keeping track of the game on her cell phone. I love my wife, but she has the worst poker face of all time. She always smiles when the team we are rooting for is winning. But she wasn’t smiling, she looked scared. I asked her how much time was left, she replied “two minutes 12 seconds.”

Little did I know it was tied at 89 and just over a minute later that Kyrie Irving would hit a to this point, career-defining three.

I told her when the game was almost over to tell me. So I waited. All I could think was come on — two minutes have had to of passed by now. I asked, “How much time left now?”

“Eleven seconds,” my wife replied.

I jumped from my computer chair and yelled, “Why didn’t you tell me!”

I ran to my phone to see the score. The Cleveland Cavaliers were up 92-89 with 10.6 seconds to go in game seven.

At that exact time, I swear the alarm you hear in the movies started going off inside me.

Yeah, like that.

I ran to my TV, turned it on, and stood there.

LeBron James, the kid from Akron, who promised to give Cleveland its championship was at the free throw line.

He misses the first — that alarm is getting louder. He makes the second and I put my hands on my head as the rest of my body goes numb.

What can I do? What should I do? Am I standing in the right spot? Should I pray?

Curry missed his final three attempt of the season from the top of the key. Marreese Speightss’ desperation shot had a less chance of sticking than my words to the sports gods above.


I started to scream like a 12 year old girl at a One Direction concert.

I screamed over and over “Oh My God they won!” My dad heard me and asked what happened. My wife had to tell him the Cavs had won.He ran out of his bedroom and back to his TV.

I collapsed to the floor of my living room and began to cry uncontrollably.

I didn’t care then, and I don’t care now what any one thinks. I cried and cried, while repeating, “They won — oh my god — they won.”

My wife had to come in and pick me up off the floor. She was crying too.

The city of Cleveland had won its first world championship in 52 years.

For those who aren’t Cleveland sports fans, you will never get it.

You’ll never understand it.

Back on May 14th ESPN showed the 30 for 30 special about Cleveland, called “Believeland”. It showed all the heartbreak and all the losses Cleveland has had had over the five-plus decades.

Well, they were in Cleveland for Game 7. They filmed what happened. They are now redoing Believeland with a new ending that will be shown on ESPN on June 30.

In closing, all I have to say is celebrate Cleveland — we deserve it.

From this lifelong Cleveland sports fan to Lebron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers — Thank you. Thank you so much.

The post From the Ohio Fanbase: Thanks to the Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron James appeared first on The Buckeye Battle Cry: Ohio State News and Commentary.

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