Cavs coming up small in NBA Finals

Cleveland Cavaliers guard J. R. Smith helped shut down the "Splash Brothers" during this season's NBA Finals. Photo by Dennis J. Freeman/News4usonline.com

Too slow. Not athletic enough. Players with limited abilities. Just ugly. I know. The Cleveland Cavaliers suck. LeBron James and his boys don’t look like they have any business on the court against the Golden State Warriors.

If the Toronto Raptors looked like a junior varsity team against the Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference Finals, Cleveland is looking like the JV practice squad against Warriors.

The Cavaliers don’t just look bad; they look like an NBA D-League team playing against the Warriors through the first two games of the NBA Finals. And the second game, a 110-77 beatdown of the Cavaliers at the hands of the Warriors, was a downright, turn-the-TV moment.

Who wants to continue to watch this mess? The fans don’t want to see this. The NBA don’t want to see this going on. They want a series. The only thing we’ve gotten to see is a closer examination of the fraudulent pretense of the Cavaliers as championships contenders. It also gives us a good look at the different level of talent disparity between the Western Conference and Eastern Conference teams.

Cleveland Cavaliers forward Kevin Love goes to the basket with Clippers center DeAndre Jordan blocking his path.
Cleveland Cavaliers forward Kevin Love goes to the basket with Clippers center DeAndre Jordan blocking his path. Photo by Dennis J. Freeman/News4usonline.com

From what we just seen between the Warriors and Oklahoma City Thunder in the Western Conference Finals, we might as well have witnessed the real NBA Finals. This series between the Warriors and Cavs is a joke. And the punch line is all on LeBron James.

The matchup between the Warriors and Cavaliers is night and day. The Cavs look overmatched in the first two games, kind of the way Tiger Woods’ opponents used to look when the golfer was in his prime. And that’s an understatement.

The Cavaliers are playing kiddie ball, while the Warriors are playing grown-men basketball, basically taking Cleveland’s backbone with them. Now, what are the Cavaliers prepared to do to get back in this series? Have some kind of pride for crying out loud.

Then again, when you have no answers to stop or slow down what the other guy is doing, what can you do?

Kyrie Irving looks like a glorified ball-hog who just came off playing streetball. There’s Kevin Love laid out and curled in a fetal position in Game 2. This after Love looked every bit of the slow, unathletic and plodding stiff in Game 1. The question of “Who Shot J.R.?” should be re-framed to “Where is J.R.?” in reference to Cavs’ shooting guard J.R. Smith.

LeBron James is going to have rally his team from an 0-2 deficit against the Golden State Warriors. Photo by Dennis J. Freeman/News4usonline.com
LeBron James is going to have rally his team from an 0-2 deficit against the Golden State Warriors. Photo by Dennis J. Freeman/News4usonline.com

Forward Tristan Thompson and the 5-year, $82 million extension he signed last year, looks like a waste of money. The Cavaliers are not paying Thompson the hefty salary of $16.4 million a year to grab five rebounds and eights points as he did in Game 2. I mean, to a man, do the Cavaliers have any pride?

The Cavaliers are playing garbage-ugly basketball. So far, this series smells like a large porcupine decided to stroll over and drop off a bomb of unpleasant air freshener off over on the Cavaliers’ bench. Their play stinks.

This is not what we expected from a so-called rematch of last year’s NBA Finals. That’s all basketball junkies and experts have been saying for a year. This series, after two games,  just looks like the same story is being re-told.

They’ve just added another chapter to the James’ masquerade. Instead of a rematch, this series between the Warriors and Cavaliers look more and more like the two-time disaster the Utah Jazz had going on when they went up against Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls in the 1997 and 1998 NBA Finals.

Both times, Karl Malone and John Stockton and the Jazz got outworked by Jordan and Bulls to  flame out on their title attempts. We have not head from the Jazz since then. It’s starting to look that way for James and the Cavaliers.

For a whole year now, we’ve heard that if the Cavaliers were to get Irving and Love in the lineup against the Warriors for this year’s Finals, things would be different.

That’s looking like wishful thinking. Irving looks like an erratic wreck. Love is proving to be no difference-maker. The Cavs need young, athletic bodies to keep pace with the teams in the Western Conference, let alone beat the Warriors. This is still a feasible goal.

A series is not over until it’s over. The Warriors proved that when they climbed out of a 3-1 hole against the Thunder to make it back to the NBA Finals for the second year in a row. The problem is the Cavs are still the same slow, unimaginable team they were the last time the two teams met in the NBA Finals. Different coach, same results?

We’ll see.

It’s time for Cavs coach Tyronn Lue to get on his coaching giddy-up and earn his keep. It’s also time for LeBron James to be LeBron James. If James wants to be mentioned with the elites of the game, he will figure out a way to win his third championship. If he does not, James will be remembered as a first-ballot Hall of Famer, and not as one of the greatest players of all time.

Dennis J. Freeman
About Dennis J. Freeman 1056 Articles
Dennis covers the NFL (San Diego Chargers), NBA (Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Lakers), Major League Baseball (Los Angeles Dodgers) and NCAA sports (USC, UCLA, Long Beach State). As a professional journalist, Dennis has also covered and written on topics such as civil rights, politics and social justice. Dennis is a graduate of Howard University.