Miami (WOIO) - LeBron James is 1-for-3 in NBA Finals. The first loss, to the Spurs in 2007, he blames on his former Cavs teammates. His second loss, to the Mavericks two years ago, he blames on the timing. You know, he and his Heat teammates hadn't been together long enough. But this next loss, if the Spurs do in fact finish the job, either in Game 6 or 7, would be a significant blow, to his reputation, and his legacy. He's still working on both, of course, but the question is, if he's 1-for-4 in NBA Finals by the end of this week, with two of those losses coming with a team he personally built, well, who does LeBron blame then?
Even his most ardent supporters are questioning his play in these finals. Sure, he puts up the numbers. By the end of the series, win or lose, LeBron's stat sheet will look somewhat impressive. But where's the intensity? Where's the clutch play? (forget the clutch shot. He still doesn't have it, at least not outside the paint). Where's the defensive urgency?
One guy can't win a series. Not even Jordan. But the all-time greats...Michael...Magic...Larry...had a way of willing their teammates to win. Of making others significantly better. And most importantly, of outworking everybody else on the court. Not whining, and flopping, and showboating when things go well, and shrinking when things don't.
Can LeBron save this series? It certainly wouldn't surprise me if he steps up with a huge game, and forces Game 7. But overall, the Spurs are simply better. If they can't wrap it up in Game 6, I believe they'll get the job done in Game 7. That's my take. The Heat haven't shown enough to make me think otherwise.
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