The Warriors just beat the Cavaliers in 5 games to win the 2017 NBA Finals. So naturally, this leads to many big picture discussions about greatest teams and greatest players.
At the center of every single water cooler discussion today is LeBron James. He’s such a polarizing figure who always causes intense dialogue between people. Heck, I’ve gotten into tons of LeBron James debates over the years. Tons.
There are two different schools. LeBron lovers and LeBron haters. I don’t think there’s much middle ground. He’s a polarizing figure who you either love or you hate. I’m in the love category. I’ve been a huge fan of his ever since he was in high school. I’ve followed his career very closely and I always want to see him win.
Here are the facts. LeBron James just lost his 5th NBA Finals. And yes, we know, Michael Jordan never lost a Finals. But LeBron James has also never been eliminated in the first round of the playoffs. Michael was twice. I digress.
Here’s another fact. Michael Jordan only faced 9 Hall of Famers in his Finals appearances, LeBron James has faced 26.
The 2017 NBA Finals loss was no fault of LeBron James. That’s not an opinion, that’s a fact.
James just became the first player in NBA history to average a triple-double in the NBA Finals after scoring 41 points with 13 rebounds and eight assists in Game 5 on Monday night. He was marvelous.
LeBron James ended the series averaging 33.6 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists but suffered the fifth Finals loss of his career as the Golden State Warriors clinched the title with a 129-120 victory.
If you want to point to game three and say he should have been more aggressive in the fourth quarter, that’s fair. That criticism is warranted and I agree with it. But he’s always been a pass-first player his whole career and dished the ball to a wide open Kyle Korver who missed a three. Oh and by the way, Korver is also one of the best three point shooters ever. But that’s a different discussion. LeBron needed to be more aggressive. However, besides that, we really can’t criticize LeBron much at all.
I would simply ask people, what more did you want him to do? What specifically could he have done to beat this Golden State Warriors team?
The Warriors are one of the best NBA teams of all time. Their star power is unreal and they are truly an unbeatable team (in a 7 game series) as of right now. Cleveland will have to add more pieces if they seriously want to challenge Golden State next season.
I was hoping for another 7 game series, but we only got five. Unfortunately, the first two games were blowouts before we finally started to see competitive basketball. LeBron James played great, and this series should not be blamed on him whatsoever.