Talk about a stressful series. Detroit was supposed to win in four, five games at most. Instead, Cleveland launched a great comeback in game two that started just a little too late for them to catch up. They carried that through to a game three blowout, which was followed up by two two point losses for Detroit before the Pistons won a two point game for game six. This game was rather close at halftime, 40-38 Detroit, before Detroit pulled away in the second half to win comfortably and take the series. Great focus by Detroit when it counted, but still more lapses in concentration made this much more difficult than it should have been.
One has to hand it to Cleveland, though. LeBron James played phenomenally, and his teammates played well also. They frustrated Detroit and played much better than people presumed they could. In the end their inexperience and the fact that they relied primarily on a 21 year old is what did them in.
Rest easy though, Cleveland fans. You took the best team in the NBA to seven games in a year where you weren't expected to last five. Provided you can keep your nucleus together and healthy, next season could be the year the Cavs make the finals. The hump for LeBron is going to be the same hump Michael had to get by - the Pistons. Detroit is kind of in a bad spot, because they are peaking right when a superstar is reaching his potential. Detroit could have dominated the early 90s, save for the Bulls and a certain number 23. It took him three tries to get by Detroit, but when he did, that was it. Now, in the mid 2000s, Detroit is again at the top of it all, but there is a new phenomenal number 23 coming of age. I don't want to sound the death knell of Detroit yet - I think the Pistons still have one or two more years of finals in them, but it's going to hinge on the Cavaliers, I think, and the rate of their maturity more so than on anything Detroit can bring.
Congrats Detroit, and congrats Cleveland.