Hello, Cleveland! Soon that city will be hosting some NBA Finals games for the first time ever. That will be an amazing adventure for everyone involved. Talk about some fans who have been needing some good news for a long time. I'll be going to the Finals, and have half a mind to spend a game watching with real fans in a sports bar somewhere just to try to feel what that will be like.
Let me be the first to say "nice Boobie." (Actually, I spotted two young ladies wearing tight-fitting t-shirts that said "Detroit can't touch our Boobie.") He's clearly LeBron James' favorite target. ESPN's David Thorpe, expressing his ongoing dissatisfaction with the pre-draft camp as a talent assessment tool, points out that if Daniel "Boobie" Gibson had been at the camp, he probably would have gotten about eight touches and five shots a game, which would give you no indication he could win a huge game for his team.
That crowd did its job.
At one point the two players who are probably closest to William Wesley -- Rip Hamilton and LeBron James -- were jawing at each other fairly hard.
In the first quarter I scribbled on my notepad: "The Pistons are psycho in their focus on LeBron James tonight. The nightmare is that they get Sasha Pavlovic or Zydrunas Ilgauskas hot." Whoops, I picked the wrong players. Should have said Daniel Gibson.
Remember when the season started and Anderson Varejao had some mysterious problem with his legs? Whatever that was, it's all better now, huh?
If two players are tied up grabbing a board, and there's a jump ball, do they both get credit for zero rebounds? That happened twice in the first half.
People have beem emailing me that Mike Brown is a terrible coach. People have been emailing me that LeBron James has no decent teammates. If all those people are right, how the hell is Cleveland ahead in the fourth quarter when LeBron James gets his second basket?
Sometimes LeBron James is SO SLOW getting into the offense. Wish he'd catch and go more often in the half-court.
Was Jason Maxiell in Flip Saunders' dog house tonight?
Poor Chris Webber, takes two hard shots where it counts, then retreats to a back hallway to recover his dignity. Only, in the back hallway there's a camera to broadcast his plight on international TV.
Antonio McDyess is a role model of putting your ego aside and reinventing your career. He was once on the Dwight Howard career path, and then after the injuries he became a winner on the John Salley career path.
Rip Hamilton sure had his game face strapped on tonight, didn't he?
SEVERAL people predicted to me that the instant it looked like Detroit would lose, Rasheed Wallace would get himself tossed. Amazingly good prediction. Although, I'd add that that was a tough series of calls for Detroit that preceded 'Sheed's meltdown.
The Cavaliers looked a little too happy with their Eastern title for me. They shouldn't even have this trophy presentation. The season is not over.
Did they boo Mike Brown?
UPDATE: My mom predicted this. Cleveland in six, she said, before the series began.
UPDATE: Check out this poll: at the moment, people think San Antonio will win, but would rather build around LeBron James than Tim Duncan.