I want to apologize for posting so late. I didn't want to write anything about last night's loss. I thought that if I slept just a little longer, put it off for a few more hours, I could pretend I don't have to wait until next April to see our Horsemen riding into the playoffs again. The crushing finality of it all will set in when I hit "publish," and I didn't think I could bear it. Over the course of these playoffs, however, nothing has been more cathartic than bleeding out my emotions onto these internet pages, so I hope you'll all bear with me for a bit.
Last night, we watched our team -- the best Cavaliers team in franchise history, a team that set record after record and swaggered into the playoffs armed with the league MVP and greatest player on the planet -- get demolished by an upstart Orlando team. It doesn't make sense. Everything seemed to be going our way. Chemistry had never been better, we had seemingly found the perfect compliment to LeBron, half-court buzzer-beaters were dropping in our favor on what felt like a regular basis. This wasn't 2007, when we were just astounded and happy to be there in the Finals. This was our year, and we wouldn't settle for anything less than a title.
But some happened. We failed. We lost. The more time that passes and the more I think things over, however, one ultimate truth keeps floating to the top of my tumultuous sea of thoughts:
We got this.
And I've never been more sure of anything in my life.
Now before you all crucify me, realize I'm not being smug or ironic here. I'm not trying to rub salt in the wounds. I'm dead serious.
Take a deep breath and reflect on all that we bore witness to this year. The accomplishments are staggering. Does that make up for losing out on a chance to win a ring? Of course not. But these things are not to be discounted. Furthermore, I've always been a big believer in the notion that sports are bigger than just the games they appear to be. There are bigger issues at stake here than whether or not we won the NBA title.
I urge you all to read fwembt's open letter and take heed of his words. There is no curse, there is no world-wide conspiracy against the city or its sports teams and fans. Cleveland used to be great, a world class city. But something happened. We lost our swagger, and it all spiraled out of control. I'm imploring you all -- never lose your swagger. Never -- even in the face of taunting from opposing fans or derogatory remarks from people in other cities -- never let the hard times get you down. Just smile and laugh it off. You're Cleveland sports fans, dammit, and that makes you all some of the toughest people on the planet. If we truly want to get through the adversity and succeed, then we will need every ounce of positive emotion you can muster, every day of your life. I don't care how trite you think that sounds; the bottom line is that negativity we never get us anything. Wallowing in sorrow will never help. Ever.
Know also that I'm not a believer in sugarcoating things. I'm absolutely devastated by the events that transpired, and you all have reason to be too. It hurts like hell; my God does it hurt. So over the offeseason, everyone here at FTS is going to take a long, hard look at what needs to be done to get us back here again next year, and we're not going to spare any criticism. We are, however, going to be realists. We don't believe in curses.
So when I say "we got this," I don't necessarily mean next year, or even the year after. But by God, it will happen. And when it does, it's going to be like nothing you've ever experienced. So please, keep that hope alive, spread the optimism, and never, never lose that swagger.
We will ride on, I guarantee you that.