Last night was a punch in the gut. In a game of inches, our Horsemen fell just short in a valiant effort, 116-114.
Under attack from an unsaustainable barrage of three-pointers by the Disney Darlings, our boys were able to outplay Orlando in nearly every statistical aspect of the game and manage to keep the final score within two points. Make no mistake -- the plan worked. The defensive rotations were good, LeBron drove the lane with force, and we finally got some contributions from The Other Cavaliers. LeBron seemed to burn out a bit at the end, committing some costly turnovers, but he also hit some clutch free throws that kept us in it and a "how'd-he-do-that" fade away three that brought us within one and set the stage for another possible buzzer-beater. It truly came down to inches, and luck just wasn't on our side (despite the navy jerseys).
if Delonte snags that rebound with six seconds left, the series is tied. If LeBron's "LeShot 2" attempt is three inches to the right, the series is tied. If Orlando doesn't get the game of a lifetime from it's replacement starting guard, the series is tied. OK that last one isn't about inches but seriously, come on.
Now, we go home. But we don't go home defeated. We may be battered, broken, bloodied, bruised and a bunch of other "b" words that connote near defeat, but we're not done yet.
We now rest and we move on. We move on not because we've been defeated and not because we're turning a blind eye to what has happened in this remarkable series so far. We move on because we must. We move on because it's what championship teams do. And this, my friends, is a championship team.
Forget the naysaying. Forget all you Negative Nancies and Debbie Downers. Forget the ghosts of Cleveland past. Take a look inside all of yourselves and reach deep. Boston once had "ghosts," too. Turns it is was just a bunch of morons wallowing in their own self pity. If they can overcome 3-0 and 3-1 deficits (different sport, blah blah), then why can't us?
A wise man once said "what doesn't kill you only makes you stronger." By that measure, I know no stronger people in my life than the good people of Cleveland and the athletes they hold dear. Cleveland dies hard. Our Cavaliers, like our city, are on the brink of a comeback for the ages.
Forget all the excuses and and reasons why this can't happen. Better yet, disregard them. Disregard the perceived pity and disrespect, the ghosts, the conspiracies, the curses -- because to even forget them is to admit they existed in the first place. All we need is to take care of business at home and steal Game 6 on the road. It won't be easy. Nothing we've ever accomplished in this city has been. But to suggest that three wins in a row is not possible for the best team in the NBA is to suggest that you don't know anything about sports.
Listen, and listen good: We got this. I've never been more sure of anything in my life.
We will ride on.