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NBA Playoffs 2016: Reflecting on the excitement and dread of being a Cavs fan before Game 5

Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

My stomach hasn't felt right since Monday night. Every hour closer to tip off tonight that feeling of unease deep down in my considerable gut gets worse and worse. It's a feeling of impending doom mixed with unparalleled excitement. It is a feeling that is not uncommon to Cleveland fans, and Cavs fans in particular. It is the same feeling that I had when Kyrie knocked knees with Klay Thompson in the finals last year. The same feeling I had when Kevin Love ran off the court in Boston. The same feeling I had when I tuned into The Decision. But it's also the same feeling I had with one second left in game two of the 2009 Eastern Conference Finals. It is the same feeling that I had heading into game five of the 2007 Eastern Conference Finals against the Pistons. It is the same feeling that I had during the summer of 2014 as I refreshed twitter like a fiend.

It is a feeling that can only exist because all of this means something and is important. It is a feeling that in the moment fans may not want as it isn't a feeling that is often aroused in a sweep, but it is a feeling that makes the wins so sweet. So many times to outsiders these things are "just a game" and perhaps in the grand scheme of things those folks are right. But today isn't the grand scheme of things. It is an apex of everything that we, as fans, have hoped and wished for all season. It is the reason we spend time talking to one another on twitter and sift through statistics like gold prospectors hoping to find that nugget that shows how our team can become THE team, the champion.

I don't know if the Cavaliers will win tonight. I don't know if the open shots the Cavs have missed in the last two games will start to drop. I don't know how to stop DeMar or Bismack given the way they are playing. What I do know is that despite the feeling in my stomach tonight is the type of game we as fans wait all year for. A game that can validate everything we've wished for. A game that my dad and I will talk about for years no matter what the result is.

And the best part is the rest of the Cavaliers playoff games will be just like tonight, no matter if there are two left or ten. So today while you try to get through work and head to your viewing place of choice remember to cherish that feeling in your stomach. There are 26 other NBA fan base's that wish they were Clevelander's tonight and that alone should make Cavs fans feel good.