2015-2016 Cleveland Cavaliers Deserve a Hollywood Movie
Yes – It’s about more than basketball
With every Hollywood movie, the focused character (or group of characters) often overcome setbacks in inspirational ways to finish with a smile. As time expired in Game 7 of the NBA Finals, the Cleveland Cavaliers had a moment of that magnitude. However, it was greater, because this was real life. As LeBron James and Kevin Love hugged, Kyrie Irving ran over, and The King collapsed to the court in tears. This real life sports fairytale is worthy of a Hollywood movie and here’s why.
ESPN released a 30 for 30 Believeland episode that focused on Cleveland’s history of sports failures but after winning Game 7, the ‘Believeland’ story will be updated and re-released with a new, happy ending this summer. If the Cavaliers can rewrite that production, surely it’s worth a bigger on-screen performance; even the NBA thinks so, as they’ve already created their own mini-movie.
The magnitude of the Cavaliers accomplishment has yet to sink in for many, but yes it’s THAT BIG. Surely a trip to the movies for a brilliant, ball-spinning movie would be worth it? With LeBron’s acting career taking off, he might want a part in the motion feature himself. Now that would be a guaranteed box-office success.
Winning the NBA Championship wipes away past pains and humiliation for the team and the town. LeBron left Cleveland in ruins when he decided to leave in 2010 to play for the Miami Heat.Thousands of fans burned his jersey and thousands more felt betrayed by their Chosen Son. Now, everyone has – and will continue to have – an LBJ jersey in their wardrobe. The King’s legacy had been restored. In 2014, he set out his intention to return and to win a title. He did just that.
Some would say there’s not enough depth to make this a movie. They’re wrong. After all, didn’t Simba run away in The Lion King, only to eventually return to his rightful place as King? Wasn’t Simba’s time away from his homeland a time where he grew physically, mentally, and emotionally, and a time where he learned about life and himself? How is that not different than LeBron’s time away in Miami, followed by his eventual return to Cleveland?
Furthermore, the Cavaliers had their own internal struggles to overcome, from player issues to the firing of coach David Blatt. All of it lit the fire that was James’ motivation for Hollywood-esque glory. Coach Blatt was doing okay. Despite having the best record in the Eastern Conference mid-season, the Cavaliers needed more. LeBron knew this, and so did the front office. They promoted Lue and fired Blatt. It was seemingly an undeserved dismissal but ultimately proved to be the correct decision. As it happens with all good movies, the series of inexcusable events always lead to something bigger when it’s all said and done.
Had the Cavaliers beaten any other team to end the city’s infamous 52-year drought, the talk of a Hollywood production would carry less weight. Their opponent, however, wasn’t a normal team. It was the Golden State Warriors, a Goliath in every way this past season. The Warriors finished the regular season 73-9 and was a team that many were calling the greatest of all time. This was the same team that beat the Cavaliers a year ago, the team that only lost once at home during the regular season and only lost two games in a row once, when it happened in the playoffs. This team had the back-to-back MVP in Stephen Curry. Everything was in the Warriors favor…or so it seemed.
When the Cavaliers fell behind 2 games to 0, all hope seemed lost – they needed to win 4 of the remaining 5 games to become NBA champions. They battled back to win Game 3 but then lost Game 4 to fall behind in the series, 3 games to 1. No team had ever overcome this deficit to win it all; in fact, only twice had it even reached a Game 7. History needed to be re-written for this to become reality.
It happened. The Cavaliers defied the odds and in doing so, they ended 52 years of hurt for an entire city. King James fulfilled the promise he made upon his return and he did it with style. Our hero sealed his Most Valuable Player award with 27-point, 11-rebound and 11-assist triple double in the ultimate Game 7. When he was asked why this championship was different than the two he earned in Miami, James replied,
“Because I’m home.” LeBron had his fairytale ending, the Cavaliers franchise had their fairytale ending, and the city of Cleveland had its fairytale ending. There may be no achievement like it in sports ever again and that is why they deserve their very own motion feature.
Contributing author: Kenny Brown