Another game in Cleveland, another huge early game lead for the Cavaliers as they stormed out leading the Magic at one point 32-10 and ending the first quarter 35-18. It’s not the 1st quarter that has givenÂ the Cavs problems as they have have dominated all 1st quarters in the series(140-98) . However, this time the Cavaliers finished with their first double-digit win in this series (112-102).
Mo Williams must have thought his guaranteed win was for tonight as he came out on fireÂ hitting 3 triples in the first 4:38 .Â He scored 24 points nailing 6-9 from 3 and finally giving LeBron James an additional 20+ point scorer.
Then the other pattern soon followed, the blowing of the lead as the Magic outscored Cleveland 37-21 in the 2nd quarter topped off with a 3 from Rashard Lewis with 0.7 seconds left to close the half and shrink the once 22 point margin to 1 (56-55).
Bad memories of the past gamesÂ haunted my thoughtsÂ as the Magic yet again dominated the 3rd (133-103) andÂ pushed up to an 8 pointÂ lead to end the quarter 79-78. That’s when the LeBron James show begin to air. It seemed as if Mike Brown and the Cavaliers threw out any game plan and decided to put their season in the hands of the league MVP. On nearly every possession of the 4th quarter James took the ball at the top of the key and played 1 on 1.
He had his hand in on 29 of the 34 Cleveland points in the quarter 17 of his own and key assists to a cutting Varejao at the rim as well as 3’s from Daniel Gibson and Mo Williams. It was picturesque of the playoff sloganÂ “Amazing”.
He showed no fear taking the ball directly into the chest of Defensive Player of the Year award winner Dwight Howard drawing Howard’s 6th foul in an And1 situation. “You never want to disappoint the home crowd by not coming out and play as hard as you can.
It was win or go home,” said James. James put up a game for the ages ending up with his 4th career playoff triple double with 37 points 14 rebounds and 12 assists. James joined an illustrious group this being his 16th consecutive 25+ point playoff game tying him for 2nd most with Michael Jordan and only 4 behind Kareem Abdul-Jabbar who holds the record with 20.
James had previously recored 40+ in all three games that the Cavs had lost, he didn’t tonight but they won. So what’s the difference? He finally had help, as previously stated Williams dropped in 24, Delonte West had 13, and Zydrunas Ilgauskas had 16 , it was finally a team effort. In the entire history of the NBA only 8 teams have ever came back from being down 3-1 and now the Cavaliers are one step closer to making that 9.
The pressure is now on Orlando to close it out Saturday on their home court as there is no way Stan Van Gundy wants to play a game 7 in the Q, especially against the greatest player on the planet.