Saturday, May 23, 2009

LeBron's Last Second Heroics Even the Series

Before it started LeBron James had called Game 2 of the Conference Finals a "must win" for the Cavaliers. With time expiring James made sure Cleveland 'did win', with his game winning 3-pointer. This was an important game for the Cavs, going into Orlando down 0-2 would have pretty much made this series over. Early on it looked like Cleveland was going to run away with the game. They were up by 20 points in the second quarter and led by 12 at halftime. With LeBron James on the floor and the home crowd in the stands, that lead should have equaled a win. But the Magic battled back and tied the game in the fourth. Then in the final seconds forward Hedo Turkoglu hit a jumper to give the Magic the two point advantage with just one second remaining on the clock. That didn't matter to James as he took the inbound pass and drained the game winner from the top of the arc.

Despite tying the series, there is plenty of concern for the Cavaliers. In both games now Cleveland has come out hot and dominated early. They entered halftime in each game with a double digit lead, only to watch it slip away in the 2nd half. If not for LeBron's final shot the Cavs would have blown their home court advantage in series. Cleveland has to find a way to transition their success in the 1st half, into a victory at the end of the game.  Overall I still like the Cavs in the series. The Magic haven't shown they can slow down James, while Cleveland limited Dwight Howard to 10 points in Game 2. Also, the Cavaliers bench hasn't been much of a factor yet in this series. I think the Cavs will still come out on top, but the Magic aren't gonna go away without a fight.

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