Reynolds Rap

We're All Witnesses

5/23/2009 7:24 AM

How many of us, Nielsen will soon reveal. But if LeBron didn’t become Big Game James Friday night, there wouldn’t be any witnesses to The King performing in the 2009 NBA Finals.

After blowing a 23-point lead… After again falling prey to Orlando’s penetration-and-kick to-three game…After The Chosen One was whistled for walking with 30 seconds left…After Sasha Pavlovic (remember him?) foolishly fouled Hedo Turkoglu with 15 seconds to all but give Orlando the last shot…After Turkoglo went left and pulled up for what appeared to be the game-winner from around the foul line with one second remaining…

It was time for LeBron to save the Cavaliers from falling behind 2-0…Time to give TNT strong ratings for the remainder of its exclusive coverage of the Eastern Conference finals…Time for NBA fans and ABC to still dream of a Los Angeles-Cleveland NBA Finals, even if commissioner David Stern, as he said before the draft lottery on Tuesday, doesn’t necessarily think that having LeBron in the championship is the only thing for his league, also known as the NBS, where there’s “nothing but stars”…

Maybe, it’s all the media stories…Maybe, it’s all the wishful and Hollywood thinking… Maybe, it’s because Cleveland has to stare down the Sports Illustrated jinx…Maybe, it’s because in Stern’s universe all stars, at least those named Dwight Howard, Carmelo Anthony or Kobe Bryant, shine equally…Maybe, it’s just the bad karma emanating from the annoyingly awful Nike puppet ad (hey, the Big Broadcaster had more than something to do with the mannequin being able to locate his three championship rings in the first place)…

Whatever the reason(s), with one second left, Cleveland was staring at an 0-2 deficit as it prepared for a road trip to Mickey town…

But it was left to this generation’s No. 23…Trailing by a deuce, it was left to James to push off from Turkoglu, after the Magic forward didn’t bite on his backdoor cut for the lob…With TNT analyst Doug Collins stating that Orlando needed to make the Cavs catch the ball going away from the basket, that’s just what happened…

Except that LeBron levitated beyond the top of the key to the nail the three and erase the ghost of Craig Ehlo past. As James said afterward, he pulled one out of his Michael Jordan bag of tricks.

Now if Cleveland can just get it together, take one in Orlando and regain home court advantage… Same thing in Denver for Kobe and the Lakers, which could easily be down a pair, as they migrate from Staples to meet Melo and Mr. Big Shot in Vince McMahon’s favorite arena…

Otherwise, we all may be witnesses to Stern’s NBS.

September