“Are you the one?”
That seems to be the question LeBron James has been asking ever since he left Miami’s sun-filled beaches, championship strolls, and Dwyane Wade for a return back to Cleveland and a chance at putting himself back in Ohio’s good graces.
But last night, LeBron’s cries for help may have been finally answered – and no, Wade did not suit up for the Cavs.
Let’s pause for a brief moment.
In case you missed it, MTV’s hit show “Are You The One?” made its return to television last night. The show features 20 singles dropped in a tropical dreamland, all looking to find their perfect match – and a shot at $1 million. If the 20 contestants can match-up each other, that’s good news for their love lives and bank accounts.
So just consider this “Are You The One?” NBA Finals Edition – in Cleveland. Honestly, it could be a little more dramatic, right?
Back to LeBron.
Since the days of the “Big 3” in Miami, LeBron has long looked for the Robin to his Batman. He kept Kyrie Irving on board and made Andrew Wiggins’ Cavaliers career shorter than his mention on Drake’s “Draft Day,” dealing him for Kevin Love. Yet while the Cavs’ “Big 3” has been successful – they’ve played in two straight finals – it’s always seemed as if something was missing. The chemistry seemed off, there was a coaching change in the middle of the season, and LeBron was spending waaaaay too much time with Wade on his off-days.
Seems Kyrie Irving had enough of that.
Last night, the duo of James and Irving did something no pair of NBA Finals teammates – not Jordan, not Pippen – ever did: They combined for 82 points, becoming the first duo to score 40+ points in a Finals game.
LeBron played like a man possessed – 41 points, 16 rebounds, and 7 assists – reminding everyone that he’s still the King. He played with a ferociousness that we hadn’t seen since Game 6 of the 2012 Eastern Conference Finals against the Boston Celtics, when he silenced the TD Garden. In all honesty, it might’ve been his greatest performance ever.
But back to Irving.
Seems like LeBron’s calling of “are you the one?” was answered by Irving. His line – 41 points, 6 assists, 3 rebounds (71% shooting, by the way) – is a testament of his Finals performance to date: Irving now has three straight NBA Finals games (Games 3, 4, & 5) where has scored at least 30 points. We’ve been waiting for a rematch of these Finals for this very reason – to see how the other Cavs would perform at full-strength – and we’re getting what we asked for.
And Kevin Love, you might ask? He was quiet last night – 2 points, 3 rebounds, 1 assist – but he was +18, so that’s something… right?
With Love seemingly the odd man out, LeBron has found his perfect match in Irving – and maybe that’s the way it’s always supposed to have been.
So now we head back to Cleveland for Game 6. Can the Cavaliers win at home and force a return trip to Oakland, or will the Warriors look for a repeat celebration at the Quicken Loans Arena? It’s up the in air, but with the duo of James-Irving playing at the level they have, anything is certainly possible, as the great Kevin Garnett once said.
Looks like LeBron James found his perfect match after all in Kyrie Irving, but we think he’d trade MTV’s $1 million prize for a championship parade in Northeast Ohio.